Six Flags America will retire Skull Mountain for 2012 attraction

Posted Thursday, June 9, 2011 12:03 PM | Contributed by Jeff

[Ed. note: The following is an excerpt of a press release. -J]

Six Flags America announced today that June 11 through July 10, 2011 are the final days for guests to set sail on Skull Mountain prior to the ride’s retirement to make way for a new attraction in 2012. Guests are encouraged to bring their mateys for a final cruise of the seven seas before the ride hoists anchor to begin its journey to Davy Jones’ Locker on Sunday, July 10, 2011.

“For more than a decade, guests at Six Flags America have been thrilled and inspired by Skull Mountain, giving them the feeling of joining a one-of-a-kind pirates’ voyage in Maryland’s favorite theme park,” said John Winkler, Six Flags America park president. “It’s a piece of history for Six Flags America and we feel it’s fitting to give it one last stand.”

The Bon Voyage countdown for Skull Mountain begins the week of June 13, 2011 when a boat is placed on the theme park midway offering unique photo opportunities for guests. A Fare-thee-Well Weekend for Skull Mountain is planned for July 9 and 10, 2011 and includes a two-day Pirate Festival, featuring pirate makeovers for guests and special entertainment from the cast of The Blundering Buccaneers stunt show. In addition, Six Flags America will host a last-rider auction, with proceeds benefitting the National Roller Coaster Museum and Archive. The park will donate a boat from Skull Mountain to the National Roller Coaster Museum following the final voyage in July.

An iconic mainstay of the American Main, this half thrill coaster/ half water flume was introduced in 1997 as the Typhoon Sea Coaster, designed and manufactured by Intamin, Ltd. of Switzerland. The first of its kind, the ride made history with a seven-story descent, at the time the world’s tallest for a water-powered coaster. Redubbed Skull Mountain in 2007, the ride’s 2,200-foot track has undergone several changes during its tenure at the park, creating an entirely different experience from its first introduction.

Related parks

Thursday, June 9, 2011 12:35 PM

I seriously doubt I'll get down there before it closes. So one of my favorite water rides will bite the dust. I'm glad I got a couple rides when I was down there in April. So there will only be ONE Skull Mountain left for me to visit occasionally. I liked the MD one better as a ride, although I didn't count it as a coaster.

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 1:07 PM

Dang it. Three tries and I never got to ride it.

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 3:15 PM

I thought it was neat, but nothing more than that. I don't recall anything particularly interesting with regards to the theme while on the ride, and the ride itself was long, but mostly due to the tedious rotating platforms. The backwards drop was probably the most memorable part, and was pretty cool, as was the final drop through the skull. I think I rode it two or three times from '97-03, and I only rode it more than once because people in my party had never been on it. It's not at all upsetting to see it go.

I'm interested to hear what the new attraction will be. It's been a long time since SFA had something new that wasn't in the water park.

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 3:22 PM

New @ SFA for 2012 - Shoot the Rapids! ;)

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 3:29 PM

Vater said:
I thought it was neat, but nothing more than that. I don't recall anything particularly interesting with regards to the theme while on the ride, and the ride itself was long, but mostly due to the tedious rotating platforms. The backwards drop was probably the most memorable part, and was pretty cool, as was the final drop through the skull. I think I rode it two or three times from '97-03, and I only rode it more than once because people in my party had never been on it. It's not at all upsetting to see it go.

I've been on it about 6 times, most recently in April. I remember only one rotating platform. And there was no backwards drop. However, all of my rides were within the last 4 years or so, so the layout/elements may have been different prior to my first rides.

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 3:52 PM

Wow, I guess they stopped rotating the boats except at the top of the final drop (which is needed since the drop is at an almost 90° angle off the lift).

You can see the location of the first rotating platform at the 1:20 mark in this video. It's in the round covered structure at the top of the first lift. It would rotate the boat 180° and you'd take the subsequent drops backwards, until you reached the second rotating platform at the end of the next tunnel (formerly located at the 2:20 mark, right about where the green light is). This one would face the boat forwards again. I actually got stuck on the second platform once--as we turned, the front of our boat got caught on one of the support columns. A ride op was stationed at that point, and he had to push the boat back with his foot so it would clear the column.

It was apparent there were many technical issues with the ride based on the fact that it was closed most times I visited the park.

Last edited by Vater, Thursday, June 9, 2011 3:54 PM
+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 7:18 PM

Rode it during the Sea Coaster days. I think the biggest gimmick was the fact that it was hardly ever operating back then and I was lucky enough to ride it. Don't remember anything much about it other than the platforms.

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 7:48 PM

This ride was mention recently, and I am so happy that I was lucky enough to ride it. Sad to see it go, but if they replace the ride system with something similar, and keep the theme, I'll be super happy!

Hopefully, they'll stay away from Intamin if they decide to replace it with another water ride. ;)

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 8:01 PM

^Yeah! Darn, that ride had so much *charm*!

+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 8:13 PM

There were three rotating turntables, but a renovation a few years ago took out the first two, leaving only the last one, the one that rotated your boat to come out of the skull.

It'll be interesting to see how they "untangle" it from the structure of The Wild One.

Last edited by ilovethewildone, Thursday, June 9, 2011 8:14 PM
+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 9:27 PM

I was lucky enough to ride it both ways as well. I really liked the backwards section. That drop caught me off guard. Other than that gimmick I agree with Vater in that it wasn't anything special. Even traveling forward it is a long ride, but just a log flume with the platform to rotate you for the final drop. I forget the name of the one local that used to post about SFA, and no it wasn't batwingfan or whatever his name was. :)

I remember his name now Coasterguts. We meant him and girlfriend in the station of Batwing on a visit, and he used to keep us buzzers up on the news at the park. Are you still here?

On another note. I pretty much hate the park. I used to go there to get our SF season passes(90 minutes from the park,) because they were the cheapest there. Skipped getting SF passes last year, and got them at SFNE this year. We figure we can go to Great Adventure in the fall and SFOG next month on vacation. That will get us our money's worth.

Last edited by Coasterfantom2, Thursday, June 9, 2011 9:43 PM
+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 10:08 PM

I don't buy the reason they give for removing it. I took a look at the bird's eye of SFA on Bing and it looks like the whole back part of the part that Six Flags built is poorly planned and landscaped and there is a HUGE amount of space back there. Are they actually removing it because it's high maintenance? I don't really know, but it seems like this came out of left field. They better replace it with something really great because SFA is really suffering these days with their lack of new stuff and the seemingly yearly ride removals.

Last edited by bjames, Thursday, June 9, 2011 10:11 PM
+0
Thursday, June 9, 2011 11:27 PM

Wait, Skull Mountain is open?

;)

+0
Friday, June 10, 2011 12:44 AM

bjames said:
I took a look at the bird's eye of SFA on Bing and it looks like the whole back part of the part that Six Flags built is poorly planned and landscaped and there is a HUGE amount of space back there.

And even their park map makes it look like those parts are way out in the boonies with tons of space in between to add attractions. It seems that its layout is the most confusing park layout I have ever seen. I would get lost just walking through the door.

+0
Friday, June 10, 2011 12:48 AM

In addition to maintenance issues, I suspect it's a super expensive ride to operate. Suprised they were able to get away with using the Pirates of the Carribean music in parts of it.

+0
Friday, June 10, 2011 9:43 AM

I remember visiting the year after the first two turntables were taken out, and they were laying on the ground outside (behind Typhoon Skull Coaster Sea Mountain), and were visible from the lift of Supes...it was pretty cool with the backwards drop and all, but the multiple turntables made the ride take forever, reducing capacity to an absolute CRAWL...

+0
Friday, June 10, 2011 10:25 AM

a_hoffman50 said:

It seems that its layout is the most confusing park layout I have ever seen. I would get lost just walking through the door.

You've got a good feel for it. For a relatively small park, it's very disorienting and difficult to navigate, at least IMO. Especially when you're trying to find the entrance to the Wild One.

+0
Friday, June 10, 2011 1:48 PM

Mike Gallagher said:
You've got a good feel for it. For a relatively small park, it's very disorienting and difficult to navigate, at least IMO. Especially when you're trying to find the entrance to the Wild One.

I don't think it's confusing at all. Inefficient for sure, but it's pretty easy to find stuff.

Then again, I'm seemingly the only one to have consistent good experiences there. Their staff friendliness/helpfulness is probably the best of the SF parks in our experience.

(I know that goes totally against what people say about SFA, but I just calls 'em as I sees 'em)

+0
Friday, June 10, 2011 1:51 PM

Did you threaten to kick anyone in the nuts there Gonch? Maybe it was the threat of retaliatory behavior that invoked the good customer service. Sorry I just had to go there...

+0

You must be logged in to post

POP Forums - ©2018, POP World Media, LLC
Loading...