Tiny Texas Twosome (Wonderland & Joyland)

Sunday, June 12, 2011 4:06 PM

I'm in Altus OK for some training and had Sat off so I took off to Amarillo to hit a couple of smaller parks that I might not be close to again for a long time.

Wonderland is a nice park with a couple of unique rides. I got in for a half day pass for $13 with my military discount. I ended up paying another $4.50 to ride Texas Tornado and the Fantastic Journey Dark ride. These are 2 of the 4 "upcharge attractions" at this park.

After I got in the park the first coaster I ran into was Cyclone. An old wild Mouse. The funny thing I first noticed is that I had never been on a wild mouse with this layout until a week ago when I was at Lakeside Amusement Park in Denver! So after all the parks and coasters I have ridden I got to ride 2 wild mice that had the same layout for the first time a week apart from eachother. Needless to say both of these mice are extremely wild and anyone that can ride these multiple times in one visit without getting whiplash or back trauma is a coaster hero in my book. That being said it is a fun ride and I actually got on it one more time before I left.

Next up was "Big Coaster" according to RCDB. A Zyklon by Pinfari. A fun ride with some nice drops.

I headed over to the "Hornet" This ride was picked up from SFAW after it closed. I was able to ride it there when it was enclosed. This is still a fun ride and a great family coaster or coaster to get young kids on to start riding.

Finally it was time to pay for my upcharge coaster, Texas Tornado. The one nice thing about having this as an upcharge is that the line is way short. I was able to get the front seat for my one ride. Nice first drop and the first loop is interesting because you actually exit the loop higher than when you entered it. The ride has an awesome g-force pulling, diving turn under their big boat splash water ride and then you set up for the final loop. Right before the final loop the coaster dies down a bit more and you get a nice pop out of your seat and then slammed back in as you zip around the tight loop. As you exit the loop you dive into a nice tunnel and then pop out into the break run. I really enjoyed this unique coaster. I wish it wasn't an additional $3 to ride it otherwise I would have gone on it quite a few more times, but then there also would have been more people in line. I guess bottom line is: if the park thinks/makes more money with this as an upcharge then hopefully it will lead to more rides/expansion in the future.

I got on the Fantastic Journey next. It had some cool features for a dark ride. I wouldn't take my little kids on it. Mostly because of the one scene of a guy getting killed in an electric chair. My daughter would have nightmares for months about that one.

The one really weird ride I saw at the park was a water slide drag race. It was maybe 25 to 30 feet long and two kids would each sit in a raft and then a platform would raise at an angle to slide them into the water jets and shoot them across the ride. It was all over in like 5 seconds. I have never seen that before.

I had two rides on each of the coasters and one on the Texas Tornado. Nice clean park with most of the typical amusement park flat rides you can find anywhere.

Joyland

Two hours down the road in Lubbock is an even smaller park: Joyland. I was here for the two coaster credits...I didn't ride the kiddie coaster, and also to try out a ride I hadn't been on since I was a kid at least 20+ years ago at Lagoon.

Mad Mouse was up first. Another mouse layout that I had never been on before and another highly intense mouse ride. I did it once and it is now on my track record. Moving on.

The next ride was very similar to the Pinfari up at Wonderland. This one was a bit different and a little bit smaller. A good ride but nothing that more than what you can usually find at your local fair.

I walked to the other end of the park and decided to take a ride on their drop tower. For whatever reason I found this to be extremely intense. Maybe it had something to do with the grandma and her grand-daughter that were freaking out next to me the entire ride. They were so glad to get off once we "lived" through the ride.

Now to find the ride I hadn't been on since I was a kid. The roll-o-plane! It is kind of hidden up on a hill in the back of the park by some waterslide type attraction they have. I found it and got buckled in. Off we went! Flipping and soaring, backwards, forewards, sideways...it was like finding the Wonkavator after all these years! That was an awesome nostalgic ride and I wish they had these at more parks but I understand why we don't see them much anymore since they are extremely low capacity.

I would never recommend going out of your way to get to this park but if you are ever in the vicinity of Red Raider Nation then check this place out. If they ever got Greezed Lightnin put together then this place might be worth trying to get to.

Thanks for reading!

Last edited by S&SFAN, Sunday, June 12, 2011 4:10 PM
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