Swamp Fox & Myrtle Beach Pavilion (June 14/18)

Associated parks:
None

Monday, June 21, 2004 4:00 PM
On June 12, 2004, I graduated for Courtland High School in Spotsylvania, VA. After graduation, many students venture to the beach for something we call “Beach Week.” Many students planned to go to Myrtle Beach, SC, so I decided that was where I wanted to go as well. I decided to room with my friend Katy and Nathalie. We left in my Toyota Echo for Myrtle Beach around 8:30 AM on June 14. We arrived there around 3 PM. We stayed at the Bahama Motel, sister hotel to the Polynesian Resort.

Once we arrived, unpacked, and got settled, we headed out to Friendly’s to grab some much needed nourishment. We sat at a window seat that looked right outside to Family Kingdom. As we ate I drooled at the Swamp Fox. I couldn’t resist any longer, so I decided after we ate that I would ride the coaster and get my credit.

The cost to ride the Swamp Fox was $4.50, not so bad I guess. I wasn’t interested in purchasing an all day pass since it was already midday and I just wanted one ride. I opted to wait for a front seat ride, since I love Front Seats and I was expecting there would be more airtime, if any, in the front telling from the layout.

he park has gorgeous PTC trains with buzz bars. They were only running the Red Train, and that was all that was needed. There was only a wait for the front seat and no other. After about 2 train wait I was finally ready for my ride.

The ride is surprising smooth, for a wood coaster, and has some very nice airtime. I think a front seat ride was definitely the right choice. I noticed more moments of floated type air rather than opportunities for back seat airtime. Some nice laterals were also present in some of the turns. I would say the airtime isn’t exactly intense but very subtle yet present. You can definitely feel the airtime. It sort of reminded me of airtime you might find on a B&M Hyper. I give it 4 out of 5 Stars.

After a week of beach, party, and clubbing, I was ready to head to the Myrtle Beach Pavilion on June 18. I was the only person interested going that I knew, so I didn’t mind going by myself. I got to the park around 2 and noticed it wasn’t very crowded. I also learned that Mad Mouse, Top Spin, Hydro Surge, Wipe Out, and other rides were going to be open. To consolidate for this, they gave everyone free Go-Kart rides. I thought that was a wonderful idea to make up for so many rides not working. I got my hand stamped and veered left for the Hurricane Category 5.

I’ve heard some bad things about the coaster. I heard that it was rough from low maintenance and of course it had to be unpleasant because of the Gerstlauer trains. I’ve ridden G-Trains on Raging Wolf Bobs and Villain at Six Flags Worlds of Adventure (formally). I loathed those trains with a fiery passion of a thousand suns. I felt like I wasn’t really sitting in any seats and was highly uncomfortable with any laterals. Oh did all of this prove true with the Hurricane.

You’ve got to climb about 4-5 flights of stairs to get to the actual station. I discovered no line except for the front seat, which was one train wait. They were only running one train, which I forget which one it was. You turn left out of the station, go pass the maintenance station where the other train rests, and fall right into the lift hill.

After the initial drop, you go over a small hill, which is rough, then up into the next hill. On the backside you enter your first double helix which throws you to the left side of the train. After exiting the helix, you go over 2 hills, which the second provides some airtime (which isn’t felt much due to trains), then rise into the second double helix, which throws you to the right. After exiting that one, you dip down then up into the brakes. End of ride.

This has to be the worse CCI coaster I’ve ever ridden but I don’t blame it on CCI. The ride is very rough with enough wash boarding to turn any coaster enthusiast away. The helixes are very uncomfortable thanks to the awful G-Trains. The laterals are very intense and the trains just don’t give comfort as your legs get smashed against the side of bare pole. There is some padding on a section of it, but I was stapled typically either by an op or the ride’s jerkiness, and it was beyond where my leg touched. Airtime can’t be felt due to the trains as well. You can feel the sensation but beyond that, your gut just gets slammed into the bar. I can’t really decide what to give this ride, 2 or 2.5. Meh, not worth my time. Lets just say, I rode this bad boy 25 times before leaving the park, the first time, in 3 hours.

From there I ventured over to the closest flat ride, the Calypso. I’ve never rode one of these before so I thought I had time so I’d experience it. I warned some kids who thought they’d ride with the pole between their legs to ride on the outside seat, they all listened and I’m sure they’re glad they did. The ride didn’t seem like anything special, it was fun, but just reminded me of a scrambler.

From there I wanted to ride the Enterprise. The only other one I’ve ridden was the one at Lake Compounce. The one there seemed to run to slow. I felt as if I didn’t hold one, I would’ve fallen. At the Pavilion, it was different, I didn’t feel like I was going to fall out, in fact I didn’t even hold on. Just a nice pleasant ride, I rode it twice in the day.

I noticed the Caterpillar was close, so I rode that next. I walked up to a ride in motion so I didn’t have to wait much to get a ride. The ride began and I was having fun. Out of no where, suddenly a green covering was rising and then covered the line of vehicles. I didn’t see this coming at all. I liked it, I thought it was a great addition to the ride. Eventually the covering lowered and the ride slowed down. We were now beautiful butterflies that could now go in reverse, which I knew it did. Fun ride, very long cycle, and I loved the addition of the covering.

I then went over to the Sleigh Ride, which is basically the same idea but the cars tilted. That was also enjoyable. I also rode the Haunted Mansion at some point which didn’t offer any scares as I was hoping for.

I’ve heard good things about the Rainbow so I was looking forward to a ride. It had a hard match to beat, the one at Clementon Park has an excellent Rainbow. Sadly, this one didn’t live up to it. It ran very well and I only experience low airtime on the reverse cycle. It also wasn’t very fun riding alone, as I had to fight the forces on the first cycle not to slide around. It was a well ran Rainbow but just doesn’t compare to the Clementon Park model. That one provides lots of airtime, all the time.

I also took a spin on the Little Eagle coaster for a credit, nothing special. I was the only person on the ride when I rode, front seat. Kids probably enjoy it, but then again there wasn’t any line and the ride op sat there bored until I arrived.

I left the park around 5:30. The park was crowded in the slightest. My 25 trips on Hurricane can prove that as many were spent not moving my butt out of the seat.

I returned to the hotel and around 10:00 PM our group was thinking about going to Freaky Tiki Club, but then we learned some of my friends were going to do a concert on the beach at midnight, so we opted not to go. I decided that I would head back to the park for a couple of rides. I found me a parking spot on the side of the park, paid the parking meter, and ventured in.

I knew I just wanted to get more laps on Hurricane since I could. There was a wait about 1 and a half staircases down. I figured I’d wait for the front seat since it’d be the least rough. There was a noticeable difference in the pacing of the ride, but it was still overall rough. The laterals were even more intense then the former rides and very painful. The airtime could be felt more though, which was nice, but there wasn’t much of it. I got three rides total when I returned at night, for a grand total of 28 on Hurricane Category 5. Eventhough the ride was better still just as painful. I’ve got bruises to prove it.

Overall, I enjoyed both coasters. Sure, the Hurricane was painful but I still enjoyed it which is odd. You’d think I’d be loopy to ride a painful coaster 28 times and yet I still enjoyed it. I think money would’ve been better spent on the Swamp Fox, which would’ve done fewer injuries. But hey, I had a good time on Hurricane and surviving through the pain!

Thanks for Reading!

[Edit]Stoopid Word Copy-n-Paste Spacing[/edit] *** Edited 6/21/2004 8:03:10 PM UTC by RCTfan***

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Monday, June 21, 2004 4:03 PM
Hey RCT fan - you might want to reformat that post into paragraphed. Try clicking on the "edit" button.

mOOSH

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Monday, June 21, 2004 4:14 PM
I beat ya to it. Fixed it just seconds before your post, I win!
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Monday, June 21, 2004 4:16 PM
LOL...thanks! And now that I've read it, nice TR ;)
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Monday, June 21, 2004 4:35 PM
Nice TR....I went to Myrtle for Senior Week as well, had a blast(god to I miss the Freaky Tiki weekends...).

I personally like HC5, but Swamp Fox is just pure, unadultrated goodness(and just as a side note, they only ever run the red train, actually:)).

Glad you had fun, can't wait to go down in late summer...

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Monday, June 21, 2004 5:13 PM
Nice TR. I feel the same way you do about The Hurricane. Yes it is an extreme abuser but I can still somehow ride it over and over. What did you think of the back seat? I personally think it is a little smoother back there than in the front.
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Monday, June 21, 2004 6:05 PM
I've ridden the back seat (not at dark though) and I found it a good ride but considerably bumpier than the front of the train. Seemed to me that the further you go back, the rough it gets. Although, all the seats were withstandable to me.
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Wednesday, June 23, 2004 11:02 AM
Glad to hear you have good things to say about Swamp Fox. A lot of people seem to regard that ride as uneventful so its nice to hear that it isn't as dull as some people say.

Nice TR!

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