Some Big Chief's Qs

Thursday, March 4, 2004 8:13 PM
Since we are no longer going to MOA and instead booking 3 nights at Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells, I have a few questions about Big Chief's as we are eager to visit.

1) The website says it opens for the season "mid march". We will be there the 24-27. Is the website correct, and can we expect it to be open? Will most of the carts and coasters, esp. the coasters be open by then based on previous events?

2) I hear that there are 2 separated sections of the park. As we dont really want to have to go between them, can anyone tell me if all of the coasters are in the same location? (While we will ride some go carts, we arent really picky about which tracks we will ride.)

3) I hear some really bad opinions of this place. Is it really that bad?

Thursday, March 4, 2004 8:58 PM
I was there several years ago, when they only had zeus, pegasus and cyclops, and it was nothing but pleasent, I used to frequent WD around 4 times a year, so...
Thursday, March 4, 2004 10:17 PM
If the park opens around mid-March, it will only be on weekends and the hours will be very limited so I would call them to verify. They also won't have a POP wristband that early in the season.

Then again, with the new name and pricing structure, all of the above statements might not hold true anymore. Once again, call.

The coasters are all in one location. The other location is strictly go-kart tracks.

Thursday, March 4, 2004 10:26 PM
Do not expect the coasters to be open. It usually snows into April there. We have been there twice in mid-April for my daughter's birthday and it snowed both times. While it was cool for the outdoor hot tubs at the hotel, not so good for coasters. Just a few kart tracks were open.

But on a brighter note the Kalahari is a killer hotel and you'll have a blast! :)

Frank - who prefers the Wilderness over all Dells hotels.

Thursday, March 4, 2004 11:07 PM
Don't expect the park to be open period. Their website said they were going to be open until end of October last year and an end of September visit found me there at a closed park and a sign on the ticket booth saying they were closed for the season. Luckily Big Chief was NOT the reason I was in the Dells for that visit.
Thursday, March 4, 2004 11:46 PM
I have seen Big Chief open in March. I have also seen it open in October. But it's all very much dependant on the weather. Even calling in advance might not do you much good unless you're able to call the day of.

If the weather stays like it has been, you might be in luck. All the snow is gone, and it's been surprisingly warm for this time of year. When they do open early in the season it's usually only a handful of kart tracks and one coaster (probably Zeus). Just be prepared for that.

I'd also like to point out that I've lived in Wisconsin for nearly 22 years and have never seen it snow into April.


Friday, March 5, 2004 8:36 AM
I was also hoping for a March opening for a weekend coaster fix.

Unfortunately I called a couple weeks back and they said they will open in April because they are "redoing the entire park" I'm anxious to see how much is changed for this year. 2005 is another story...Hades should make them potentially the best woodie park in the world.

Friday, March 5, 2004 9:29 AM

coasterdude318 said:

I'd also like to point out that I've lived in Wisconsin for nearly 22 years and have never seen it snow into April.


Just last April 7th, we had a pretty big snow storm in the Chicago area. You are telling me that Wisconsin didn't get any of that? It snows in April in Wisconsin.

Friday, March 5, 2004 10:30 AM
No, I don't believe we got any snow on April 7, especially considering just a couple days later it was in the 80's.

It's pouring here, is it raining there? ( says it is not).


Friday, March 5, 2004 11:02 AM

While I admit it is rare for it to snow in April in the Dells area, it DOES snow in April from time to time.

Over the past 30 years, the Dells area has averaged 1.8" of snow in the month of April.

While that isn't much compared to December or January, it has/does snow in April there occasionally.

Back on topic, I'll echo the other experiences already posted - early and late season @ Big Chief's is a gamble - perhaps that will change now that they're striving to become a bigger "player".

Friday, March 5, 2004 11:23 AM
Chi, I would normally agree with you but according to no precipitation - snow or rain - fell on 4/7/2003 in Elgin - where you live...
Friday, March 5, 2004 12:18 PM
Well, it was around that time. I remember it because I went to the emergency room and had to drive in a snowstorm.

Granted, April is not normal for heavy snowfall, but it did happen.

Nate, yes, right now we are warm enough where we are getting rain, but its not uncommon to see snow falling in the month of April. Especially at night where it can still fall into the 20's.

*** Edited 3/5/2004 5:19:39 PM UTC by Chitown***

Saturday, March 6, 2004 12:26 AM
Any of that 1.8 inches that happens to fall in April melts almost immediately. Especially in recent years, there has been little to no snowfall in April, and nothing ever stays on the ground. Chicago could easily be a different story...there's the whole lake effect thing.

Chitown: If it was raining in Elgin today, that's funny because it was perfectly dry downtown (I know because I had to get a last-minute passport today). Just another example on how weather can vary greatly in two places not so far apart.


Saturday, March 6, 2004 12:45 PM
Ive lived in Wisc. for over 42 yr and if often snows in Apirl and even getting snow in May isnt unheard of. It may not last long but it does snow in April
Saturday, March 6, 2004 1:27 PM
Well whenever you do get to Big Chief, other than the prices being a bit high, I think you will enjoy the experience. Pegasus is a fun family coaster, Cyclops in the back seat has a killer last drop, and Zeus is a great out n' back woodie through the woods. All the coasters let you take two laps around. Fun Place... Triton the newer water coaster should be cool and I can't wait for Hades to open up...Like CoasterJoe said...could be the best woodie park ever once Hades is up and running :) !!!
Saturday, March 6, 2004 3:14 PM
I too live in Wisconsin (and go to school in Indiana) and there has definatly been snow in April and sometimes May, the weather is unpredictable and there is only one rule:

Sometime in Sept-Oct it will become cold and winter starts; sometime in April-June it will become warm and summer starts.

The midwest has no spring or fall.

Sunday, March 7, 2004 12:23 AM
Where in the state do you live? Like I said, I'll agree with saying it occasionally snows in April (though like I said, it's usually a tiny amount at best and melts away immediately) but snow in May? Uh, I don't think so.


Sunday, March 7, 2004 12:54 AM
I remember it quite well:

May 1996-It snowed an inch in May one night. Its pretty hard to forget it snowing in May my schoolmates and I were not pleased.

Before you ask, I live in Appleton which while being north of the dells is not in the far north yet and while there usually isnt a lot of snowfall in April theres too much of it and if there isnt a week of 50+ degree days the base we will get from the all to pridictable and completly unwanted late March blizzard will still be there (same is true in Indiana).

Late April you can start to have good odds there will not be snow on the ground but early April the odds on snow are high.

Sunday, March 7, 2004 1:04 AM
No, but in Appleton you do get the lake effect (which you don't get in the Dells).


Sunday, March 7, 2004 1:27 AM
You still need the right temperatures to have lake effect snow.

You know the saying: "April showers bring May flowers". Those April showers could very well be snow if the temps drop enough.


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