SFGAm 7/27 - A great morning!

Associated parks:
None

Monday, July 28, 2003 6:18 AM
If I can give one piece of advice to beat the crowds at SFGAm on a weekend, it is to arrive early. Very early.

I went to the park with a friend of mine. I picked her up at 8:15am in Milwaukee and managed to pull into the lot at SFGAm at 8:50. God, I love my new car ;)

Anyways, things were done this morning like I have never seen them done before. I don't know if it was because they were expecting huge crowds or if it was just because this is their policies late in the summer. They started letting people into the gates at about 9:15, 15 minutes earlier than I have ever seen it before. We made a mad dash over to Superman and ended up about 20th in line.

Again, I was surprised to see them open the queue to Superman early. They opened it at about 9:45 am. We got in line for the front row, which would turn out that we would be on the second train of the day. Oh well, I was hoping to get my first "first train of the day" ride, but it wouldnt happen on Superman....

The next thing that shocked me was that they started dispatching trains right away! That meant that I was off of Superman in time to catch the running of the bulls over to Batman!

The chains in Orleans Place dropped at precisely 10am and a pair of employees did an awesome job of making sure the mob didnt go past them. This was actually a good thing, because we managed to weasel our way up to the front of the pack that way before even getting to Batman. Once the mob got to Batman, we were the first two people waiting in line to ride.

First in line means front car (not that I don't ride there anyways everytime I ride Batman, there just isnt a better seat on that ride) It also meant that I finally got to ride on the first train of the day!! On my second coaster of the day!!! Batman, BTW, felt really on the money that day. Every part of that ride just felt right.

Next up was V2. I wanted my friend to give it a try. The last time I was on the ride, I was turned away because of my size. I was really close, but the operators werent pushing down on restraints to help close the restraints. I told my friend that I might not get to ride, but for her to ride anyways. Well, surprise, surprise, not only did I amost do the restraint myself, but the op gave a small little push to get it to lock! I got to ride! I miss this ride so much. It is one of my favorite rides in the park because it is one of the few rides that still gives me a bit of a scare and gets my heart beating real good.

After that it was off to Eagle for a walkon ride on the backwards blue side. Eagle seemed to be running real well. We got some really good pops of air in the front (really back) car on this. Later in the day, we would come back and ride the forwards side in the back and wouldnt find the same abundance of airtime, however it was there.

Next up was Raging Bull, where we took two back seat rides. On the second ride up the lift hill I noticed Deja Vu testing so that was automatically the next stop. As for Bull, it wasnt running real good. I noticed a lot of rattling and the ride just didnt seem as intense as it usually is. When we were finished with Raging Bull it was 11am. All of that park after only an hour of operating time.

Walked over to Deja Vu to find a pretty healthy line waiting outside the gates for a chance that it might open. I had yet to ride Deja Vu, being denied because of it being closed or 5 hour waits in the past. Well the minute I entered the line, the gates opened!!! I was going to ride Deja Vu!!!

Well what turned out to be a four train wait, ended up being about a 45 minute wait as two trains got through and it broke down. They were having problems getting the train down the last spike when the ride was over. The train was coming down REALLLLLLLLLLLLLY slow. I watched in amazement at three ride mechanics climbed the ladder up the spike about 100 feet up! That blew any aspirations of ever wanting to be a ride mechanic for me right there!

Anyways, the ride did finally operate and I finally got to pop that Deja Vu cherry! The ride was so so. The initial lift had me a bit freaked but after that I found the ride to be typical Vekoma, very rough. I will probably not ride this again unless I get a similar opportunity at a short wait. Also, when I am at Magic Mountain in a few weeks, I will probably still try to ride theres.

The rest of the day was spent doing rerides and such. The park was very busy for the rest of the day. I like that they were controlling the stations for Deja Vu and Viper. Made for a less stressful station experience. This made the Viper line look artificially long, which in a way was a good thing, because it kept the line to about 20 minutes all day when it appeared to the public to be about a 60 minute wait from the outside.

All in all, this turned out to be one of my best days at the park. I got so much accomplished on a busy day that it made the day that much better. That coupled with my first Deja Vu ride and being able to ride V2 made it even better.

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Bob Hansen
Resident Airtime Whore

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Monday, July 28, 2003 9:13 AM
Sounds like you had a blast. By the way, what type of car did you get? ;)

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Whenever you can ride a roller coaster and experience 15 spots of intense airtime, you know you're on a good coaster. (see: Phoenix)

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Monday, July 28, 2003 11:00 AM
Hyundai Tiburon GT, fully loaded. And you will know it is mine if you see it in the Six Flags parking lot because it's license plates are: KIX D SKY (Wisconsin plates, not that anyone in any other state would have em ;) )

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Bob Hansen
Resident Airtime Whore

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Monday, July 28, 2003 11:24 AM
Nice TR, Bob. I wish my Six Flags park operated as efficiently as yours.

By the way, the singer/songwriter/guitarist of my band just got a Tiburon GT. Nice little car.

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-Mike B.
Son of Hulk
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Monday, July 28, 2003 1:50 PM
I was there as well on sunday. We were in the second train of Deja Vu when it stopped in the first spike. Now my wife never want's to ride it again. We also wathced it break down later on in the day when the 2nd hill's lift broke down and some people got stuck in the brakes on the loop. That was pretty neat to watch how they fixed it. We also got lot of pictures. I loved Raging Bull and would be very happy if PKI got a B&M hyper next year.
*** This post was edited by coastertigger 7/28/2003 5:52:58 PM ***
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Monday, July 28, 2003 2:32 PM
Bob:

Great TR. I am hoping to make it up there once the summer crowds die down.

I'm glad you went with the Tib. I love my '01. All you need now is a CoasterBuzz frame and you'll have it made?

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Monday, July 28, 2003 8:09 PM
Glad you had fun. But I must say, first a Kraken fan, and then you thought Deja Vu was so-so. Hmmm...:)

I went today, and could devote an entire TR to my experiances in the parking lot, but since this is a family site, I'll keep my thoughts to myself. The park experiance was great, as usual, aside from some rather long lines for Bull early on, and Deja Vu being closed. The highlight of the day was Batman, at dusk. What a rush.

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Never Has Gravity Been So Uplifting.

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 5:46 AM
BullGuy, it is so PLAINLY obvious that the two of us will never agree on great coasters. Why, I bet you probably think Legend is a rickedy old piece of junk ;)

I want to hear about the parking lot experiences!!!

Batman at dusk sounds awesome. I have never been in love with that ride as much as I am this season. Like I said in my TR, it was just a perfect ride on Sunday and all year I have been getting a real "kick" out of the ride. I am even starting to think that it is better than :: gasp :: Montu! I will have to see if it is just that one when I go out to SFMM in a couple weeks and see if I get the same experience on their Batman.

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Bob Hansen
Resident Airtime Whore

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 6:02 AM
Maggie and I had a real a$$-kicker of a ride on B:TR a couple weeks ago. It's still one of my favorite rides around.

I was *this close* to jumping on the train Sunday morning and heading to the park. Sounds like I missed out.

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Friday, August 1, 2003 7:15 PM
It's a stretch for me to think of SFGAm's B:TR as better than "::gasp:: Montu." But then again, when I went to BGTB, I'd become kind of sick of B:TR, having been on both GAm's and SFStL's. (St Louis' is kind of unique, being a mirror of GAm.)

Great TR. Congrats on the new car!

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"Welcome to Wisconsin... Illinois' Largest State Park."

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Monday, August 4, 2003 11:58 AM
I can see where you are coming from on your opinions of Batman and Montu. I had those same opinions last year. They started changing though this February. First of all, I had some less than stellar rides on Montu on my last trip out to BGT. Then, this season, for some unknown reason, Batman, IMHO, has been running so awesome this year. I normally don't like tight twisted layouts like Batman with quick changes of direction. I have always preferred a much better paced layout like Raptor or Montu. Maybe it is changing attitudes, maybe the two rides are performing differently this year. Who knows? It could be a combonation of the two.
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Bob Hansen
Resident Airtime Whore
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