Six Flags and an experience of Deja Vu!

Associated parks:
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Saturday, August 6, 2005 12:37 AM
Six Flags Magic Mountain- 7/26/05


“Six Flags? Oh yeah…just take I-5 and you’ll be there in 20…maybe 30 minutes…..”
That is what we were told at the Knott’s Resort. Being from Cincinnati, we believed them. We hadn’t driven around much in the L.A. area the preceding days, so we were completely oblivious to the traffic situation. So, in accordance with our directions(which sounded very simple at the time), we left at exactly 9:30, hoping to join in the “running of the bulls” to avoid the line for X later in the day. Well, we hopped right on to the correct interstate and followed the directions exactly. To make a very long story short, there was extreme traffic that I am in no way accustomed to living in Ohio. We finally pulled into Magic Mountain at 11, yes 11, A.M. One hour and thirty minutes later, we walked through the gate and towards X. I saw the sign stating the rides that would not open….it had just as I expected, Sky Tower, Orient Express, Flashback, blah blah blah…but wait…where was Déjà vu? Not on the list?!?! Oh yes! This could be my chance to finally ride one of these dang giant inverted boomerangs…..

Anyways, we were disappointed, of course, as we were expecting to now have to wait 2-3 hours for X. So we leisurely walked up to the Baja Ridge and across the bridge to the coaster. Oh goody. The line was nearly out to the entrance and the sign stated it would take 2.5 hours. Here we go again. It was looking like a 2003 repeat with one train op and several breakdowns before we boarded.

We got in line and watched Viper, contemplating our thinking of getting in line for this ride. Well, the line moved. And then moved again. And then some more. What is going on here? They must be opening the turnstiles up ahead or something….No, wait, they are….gasp….using two trains?!?! What is happening here? And the dispatch times are rather good? What park am I at again? Hmmm….Well, 20 minutes after entering the queue, we were up by the station. I absolutely despise the station for this coaster. Being that each side is only loading 7 rows, it takes far too long to move even a tiny bit. Well, about 30 minutes later, we were sitting in second to last row. They checked our restraints, and we were off! Wow, this ride is not nearly as fun in the back. The back cars get whipped over the first hill so fast, I had no time to enjoy the view. It was much rougher than we remembered it, and we decided to blame it on the back rows. We walked off the ride at, gasp….11:50? Not even noon and we had ridden X. This was looking to be a good day.


Well, we walked over the “mountain” to Cyclone Bay, only to find Déjà vu and Psyclone closed. I hadn’t heard Superman launch as of yet either. Dang. But, I was still hopeful, as they were testing Psyclone and D.V. had an op standing at the entrance. So we headed over to the Riddler’s Revenge, waited an hour, and had a good ride. This is by far by favorite B&B standup. The station music is really cool too. The crew on this ride just needs a little “kick”. The line moved sooo slow for what it could be. I just kept thinking “at Cedar Point this line would take 10 minutes…..” We then headed to Batman, and walked right on. What was going on here? The Batman crew was doing awesome, dispatching trains right and left, while R.R. had over an hour wait. Ugh.


We then went over to Scream, and had a 5 minute wait. From the stairs I saw…gasp…Déjà vu rinning! And Superman launched! We had an awesome ride on Scream….I love the zero-g roll. I saw the cars for FreeFall sitting in the ‘parking lot’ inside Scream. I just can’t figure this park out. Just open all the rides! It’s not that hard. Most every other park can do it, why can’t this one? Anyways, we rode Goliath. Awesome, as it was on my last visit. The second hill is incredible, and the floater airtime on the third is awesome. The “helix from hell” was in full swing, as I felt my cheeks being pulled to the ground.

We took a rather brisk walk over to Déjà vu, only to find Psclone and D.V. running! We got in line for Déjà vu immediately, praying for just one ride on it. The line moved, well, slow, but it did move. 55 minutes later, we were in the station! I can’t believe I am actually getting to ride this ride! The fist vertical spike is awesome, hanging there, looking straight down is simply the best part of the ride. Some intense g’s were to be had on the loop and Cobra Roll. Overall, I really enjoyed the ride. It wasn’t too shakey and was very thrilling.

To stop myself from blabbing on and on, I will simplify the rest of my day:

-Superman with a 1 hour wait. Not nearly as intense as I remembered it.

- Ninja with no wait. Fun Arrow suspended, great location.
- Arrowhead Splashdown. Really fun log flume in a great location.
- Goliath with a 30 minute wait.
- Scream with no wait again. 2 train op was going well.
- Front Seat on Riddler’s Revenge. Can you say intense? This was awesome, the front provides an awesome view.
- Log Jammer in the dark. This ride is incredible at night! The lift seems to go on endlessly into the forest. Superman launched when we were right next to it, which was very exciting. The two drops at the end were also awesome, in pitch black. This ride was built into an awesome location. I love this log flume!
- 3 rides on Revolution in the dark. Once in the front row, twice in the back. I think this is one of the best steel coasters to ride in the dark. Flying through the woods and the tunnel was incredible.


I think one word can describe Magic Mountain: Potential. Not potential to add more attractions, but to operate at its fullest capacity. Put…gasp…3 trains on Goliath. Open Flashback every now and then.(or even on a regular basis!) Open…gasp…Skytower and Metro. I know what some of the issues are with these rides, but could they at least show some effort into getting them operational? I really enjoyed my trip to Magic Mountain, but probably because the “novelty” of the attractions hasn’t worn off yet for me. I think this park could do much better and get much more enthusiast support if they mended their park operations to be more guest friendly.


Thanks for reading!

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Monday, August 8, 2005 10:08 PM
Any comments or questions? It just seems wierd that no one has replied.
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Monday, August 8, 2005 10:15 PM

PKI discodude said:
- Front Seat on Riddler’s Revenge. Can you say intense? This was awesome, the front provides an awesome view.

I'm overtired, and as such this is probably only funny to me, but surely the term "seat" is inappropriate for a stand up coaster? :)

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Monday, August 8, 2005 10:19 PM
Umm.. Yes, I guess it technically is incorrect. I guess I was subconsciously referring to the "bicycle" seats that passengers "stand" on. ;)
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Monday, August 8, 2005 10:38 PM
Deja Vu has been open all season at SFGAm. (Save for a day here and there). They've finally got it figured out. Awesome ride.
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Monday, August 8, 2005 10:45 PM
Really? On my last trek out to Magic Mountain, also in late July, the train for Deja Vu wasn't even on the track. I could only see pieces of it laying in the station. I guess they have finnaly figured it out!
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Monday, August 8, 2005 11:38 PM
The reason why The Riddler's Revenge loading takes a lot longer than it used to *GASP* is because of those seat-belts that were installed a few years after its opening. That made dispatch times much longer, as now ride hosts had to check both the restraints and seatbelts. If the just ONE seatbelt is not latched in, the computer reads this and will not allow for dispatch. I once had a friend that for some dumb reason unhooked his seatbelt on Riddler and the entire train came to a complete stop on the lift-hill and the ride hosts had to walk up the lift-stairs to see what happened. Needless to say it was embarassing.
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Monday, August 8, 2005 11:39 PM
I guess I can't figure out how any park would think it's acceptable to have a list of rides they decide not to operate on a given day. Especially a park like this one that obviously draws a large amount of tourists who might only have that one day to visit.

Why is that? Is it maintenance or breakdown? Or don't they feel like paying someone to operate the darn things? The only thing worse is that the public would also come to think that's an acceptable park practice and put up with it.

Other than that, sounds like you had an enjoyable trip and did get to ride the rides you were looking forward to.

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Monday, August 8, 2005 11:44 PM
If you're only given 'x' amount of money for a maintenence budget and your park require '2x' to keep all ride running you have to close some rides on occasion.
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 12:40 AM

PKI discodude said:


This is by far by favorite B&B standup.



How many other Bed and Breakfast standups have you ridden? I find that more humorous than the "seat" issue ;)

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 11:11 AM
Moosh, I know I'm preaching to the choir here, but it would make sense to only build what you can staff and maintain continually. Every other park seems to think so.

But I can see why they do it-- the GP is letting them get away with it. Just shrugging your shoulders while handing over your cash gives them no reason to change their current operation. People are actually rewarding laziness, ineptitude, and poor management. I'm sure the single day admission price is based on this huge coaster collection, only a fraction of which is operating on any given day.

I think enthusiasts and the GP should take SF to task over this. Take care of what you have before you start planning the next one. Don't brag that your park has the most coasters-- what are they up to, 82 or 83 now?-- when you have no more than 8 or 9 operating on any day.

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 11:22 AM
^That's exactly the approach that our SF park is taking which may explain why they havn't gotten any coasters since 01.

They've got enough problems maintaining what they've got already & I'm sure SFMM is pretty much in the same boat.

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 11:28 AM
But THIS coming off-season SFMM is taking care of the maintenance issues and refurbing existing rides INSTEAD of building something new, right? ;) ;-X
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 11:32 AM
Nice TR, what is log jammer all about? Are there any pics of it anywhere? Is it modern or an older Arrow model?

/me is a log flume fanatic

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 11:33 AM
I guess I was really lucky in my visits to SFGAm, SFoG and SFMM in 2001....I rode all three of the US-based DejaVu clones in a span of two months (Sept/Oct). I was only at the parks for two days each and rode them both days of my visits.

:)

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 12:08 PM
Count me in as one of the lucky ones too. I've been to Magic Mountain twice, both on family vacation from the UK and have ridden every ride in the park on both trips!

The last trip was in the may after X had opened and we were on after an hour wait, we also got to ride Deja Vu and Flashback on the same day!!!

I now live in San Diego and after these two trips I don't really want to go back following what everyone has said, I'll stick to Knotts from now on!!

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 10:20 PM
^You live in San Diego? I'm so jealous! I want to move to La Jolla really bad. But anyways, I believe that the Log Jammer is an older Arrow log flume. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think it may have been there when the park opened? I'm not really sure though. Anyways, I still think Knott's offers a better overall park experience than Magic Mountain.
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 10:48 PM

RatherGoodBear said:
Moosh, I know I'm preaching to the choir here, but it would make sense to only build what you can staff and maintain continually. Every other park seems to think so.

But I can see why they do it-- the GP is letting them get away with it. Just shrugging your shoulders while handing over your cash gives them no reason to change their current operation. People are actually rewarding laziness, ineptitude, and poor management. .


I don't think that's quite the case, or at least recently. The park had a deal at the beginning of the year if you purchase a one-day admission ($47.99), you get a season pass at no additional charge. For a park that is open year round and boasts the most coasters, I find that pretty pathetic. The attendance figures at this park last year were somewhere between 2-3 million.

As others have said, before adding more rides, maintain the ones you currently have. Sky Tower, Flashback, and the monorail have been down on a consistent basis. Why the heck has the observation tower been down for a few years now? That is just messed up IMO.

While I liked some of SFMM's coasters, the park overall had quite a negative feeling to it.

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