Once a year I take a trip to Chicago, and no trip is complete without a visit to Six Flags Great America.
I woke up at 7:30, waited for some friends to arrive, and we were out the door by 8:15.After nearly 1½ hour drive we reached our hotel right across the street from SFGAm, normally we don’t stay over night, we drive back, and drive back up the next day, but my friends have been having car trouble lately.
After parking in the hotel parking lot, we walked right to the gate. On the way I was amazed at how any people were here, I expected there to be less considering it was a Monday, but it didn’t bother me too much. The line to get in wasn’t too long, and we were in the park within 10 minutes.
As soon as we got into the park, we headed straight for Déjà Vu. The entrance was blocked, and the line outside of it wasn’t too long, but it was growing really fast. After a couple of test runs, they let us in. By the time we stopped moving, we were already in the station. I wanted the very back, but we ended up in row 5 b.We got closer to boarding, everyone was getting REALLY nervous, except for me, since I have ridden it at SFMM before. Wile we were waiting, we heard the dreaded weather recording. Just as soon as my group was to board next, the dreaded announcement came over the speakers, and everyone was moaning. Apparently they were having trouble with the floor, and it wouldn’t come up, but after five minutes we were on the ride. The back spike is still my favorite element; it has that fear element I like. Everyone loved the ride; they couldn’t stop talking about it.
After Déjà vu, we headed over to Raging Bull. The line was short, it barely extended past the stairs, and about 10 minutes later, we were in row 4. The drop was great, and the turnaround was fun. All of a sudden you are rocketing into the third hill, and BAM! You are hit by a trim brake, after barely gliding over the top, we dive down into the next two elements which are taken slow, and aren’t very forceful, after going through the mid coarse block brake, we head into another hill which happened to be the only piece of airtime I really got, after another trim, we head into some slow turns, and we coast into the brakes. This was the worst ride I have ever gotten on Bull. It was pretty forceless, and didn’t have really any airtime, it just sucked.
After Bull, we headed over to Giant Drop. 20 min. wait, really nothing out of the ordinary except for the new seatbelts it had gotten.
We next headed over to Demon, which had a surprising 20 minute wait. I headed for the back row, and got ready to experience one of the greatest drops on a looping coaster. They were playing clips of the song in the tunnel, but for some reason the first car would practically be out of the tunnel when they started. As we made the turnaround after the lift, I got ready for the drop. As we started to drop, I was confused about why there was no airtime. My I was quickly proved wrong because I was rocketed out of my seat. The loops and tunnel were fun, but as we went into the turnaround, I was a little worried because the brakes were not on. We picked up speed in the turnaround, and we sped down the drop, and were launched through the corkscrews. I took one good bash to the neck, but that was all. If they turned up the brakes, less people would come off with headaches. Like 80% of the people were complaining about their heads when they came off.
We next went over the Great America Raceway, 5 minute wait; nothing out of the ordinary, except the train passed us by, which is always cool.
We then headed over to American Eagle to try it backwards. While waiting in line I saw waiting to ride it forward, which left the backwards line really short. Another shocker was that they were consistently racing it both days, I ended up racing 3 out of the 4 times I went on it, and the only reason we didn’t race that one time, is because they were having trouble with the lap bars. The lift backwards is really cool, and not knowing when you reach the top is also pretty cool, we even had a nice chat with people on the red train. The drop was pretty good, but I find it much better forwards. As we crested the first hill, I got very little airtime, which was quickly made up for as I was launched out of my seat on the second hill. The brakes weren’t on too hard on the helix, and we rapidly gained up speed. After waving to the red train, we exited the helix, and were thrown left right, then flew down the drop, after getting some air on the next hill; we entered a long boring piece of flat track, and into another hill, which provided air. We were in the lead, but our brakes before the final helix were on harder than the red side, so they beat us to the brake run, but we entered the station first…..so who won ?????? That part got me.
It was getting a little hot out, so we went over to go see Magic Quest, while we were waiting for them to let us in, part of our group stayed there, while we went off to go ride Shockwave. The line was REALLY short; we walked right into the station. I used to like Shockwave, but I have changed my mind. I was ready for a good ride, all I had to do is keep my head back, and I won’t bang my head. While I didn’t get any head banging, my head was tossed, and my neck was hurting because of all the force I had to use to keep my head straight.
After a painful ride on Shockwave we headed over to Magic Quest, it is basically the same show as last year, except some differences. We were amazed at the lack of people waiting for the doors to open, last year there was a huge group, and when the doors opened they would charge, and literally launch bags and objects to try to save seats, it was an experience. While we were waiting for the doors to open, we were talking to this one lady, who was freaked out ever since she rode Déjà Vu. Apparently when they were going up backwards, her restraint slipped a little, now at first I was thinking “well maybe your restraint was close to clicking another notch, and it didn’t, so when you went backwards, it moved up”, well she showed us her estimate of how much it moved up, and how much each notch click was, and I was amazed by her accuracy.
Next we headed over to Roaring Rapids; it was a 40 min. wait. We passed time by looking in the storage area for the boats, you would not believe how much crap is in there, season passes, glasses, credit cards, etc. Even though you get soaked, it is not from the rapids, it is from the employees shooting off water, and the cave waterfall, without these two things, everyone would practically be dry.
Next, part of my group went over Vertical Velocity, but I passed, and while they rode that, I rode East River Clawer, and relaxed.
We headed across the Midway to Batman; it was a 30 minute wait. It was the same as usual, nothing out of the ordinary.
We then headed over to Iron Wolf, it had around a 30 minute wait, as we passed by my favorite flat ride Fiddler’s Fling, I couldn’t help but notice about how they changed the center piece, I liked the old one much better. The front row for Iron Wolf has a very short line, so we decided to ride it in the front. While in line noticed about how the track after the turn through the loop was equipped to have trim/ block brakes on it, but it never did. The ride was great in the front, except for the turns made me hit my head a little, but nothing too bad.
We rode some more rollercoasters, nothing new, and some flat rides.
The park was closing in an hour and half of my group wanted to go to Raging Bull, and the other half wanted to go to Whizzer, so naturally I went to Whizzer. The line barely extended out of the building, and the hour ended up being an hour, and what a horrible hour it was. It was so cluttered in there. Even though I do not have claustrophobia, I felt claustrophobic. Whizzer was great. I loved my ride, it was great, I especially loved the ground hugging turn, but one thing caught me off guard, this thing is silent now, it used to roar, now not a sound is made. I took a lot of pictures of Whizzer, thinking it was still closing, but I ended up loosing the film. Oh well, at least it is staying.
The park was now closed, and on the way out, I had to stop at the candy shop, whatever they call it now, and pick up a caramel apple, and it was soooo good.
Woke up at 8:30, was out of the room by 9:30, and was at the park by 9:45, we were in the park by 10:05, because they started to let us in early.
We immediately headed over to Déjà vu, the line was too long, so we skipped it, and we ended up starting the day off with Demon. The line was shot, barely reached out of the station. The ride was better since I knew the brakes weren’t on, so I was more prepared.
We then hit Raging Bull (30 min wait) Eagle (20 min wait), Iron Wolf (30 min wait), Batman (40 min wait).
We then went to Hometown Square to go to the Scenic Railway, which we took to Fairground junction, and my shorts got a small rip in them because it got caught on one of the screws when I was getting off.
We then rode Logger’s run which was an hour wait, it was a great ride, I ended up getting very wet, because at the bottom of the drop you are launched into a bunch of water.
We then went over to Shockwave, which had a short line, so after more pain we decided to take in a show.
We decided to go to Radio Active, everyone in my group liked it, except for me, I thought it was okay, but it did get tons of songs stuck in my head.
We then decided to take in some more coasters, and have some dinner over at Farmer’s market, besides the lines, his was the only thing not great about the trip. The tables weren’t clean, and about half of the places were closed.
After dinner I decided to take in some flats, I love the flat rides here, especially East River Clawer, and Fiddler’s Fling. I noticed on Fiddler’s Fling, that the cars take longer to start to spin up to speed, but when they do, wow, it felt like the side of the car was going to fly off.
After some flats, my group wanted to hit Déjà vu, but I didn’t even though the sign said 2 ½ hours, it ended up being under an hour, wow I was shocked.
We ended up taking in some more rides, and watched a little of the parade. I never ended up riding Viper, oh well, I’ll live.
Overall it wasn’t one of my better trips because of the lines, but the employees were friendly, and quite a few were foreign. The landscaping was great; there were hundreds of Marigolds planted along the carousel pool. And the crews, while not speedy, were not slow, so that was a plus. The paths were generally clean, and the queues were to, except for the Batman one, which had some overflowing garbage cans.I always enjoy SFGAm, and I can’t wait to return next year.
Sorry for the late report, but I have been really busy lately
Welcome one and all, y'all come have a ball!
Things a bear-y fine, ridin' on the old Knott's bear-y line!
*** This post was edited by MilleniumForce6279 on 8/16/2002. ***
Wow, no Viper in 2 days.
SFGAm: 1)DV 2)V2 3)AE Blue 4)Viper 5)Bull
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