I'm going to try to break this down into some key points so I don't go on
Crowds and Rides:
The crowds were light but there were many school groups in attendance for
physics day and band competitions - it was totally manageable. The
following rides were closed:
Chiller - Batman side
Chute the Shoots
Poland Spring Plunge
Everything else at the park either operated all day or for at least a
portion of the day.
Kingda Ka launched intermittently from 11am - 3pm with about 20 rollbacks
and no completion of the circuit. The security guard at the entrance to the
ride said it would only open if it stopped raining. After 3, they ran a
test about every 20 minutes and it was completing the circuit, but the ride
never opened for the day.
My first ride on Superman - It's a B&M - it should eat people (capacity
wise), but after standing in line in the rain for an hour I was unimpressed
with the ops. This ride really needs 4 ops checking restraints, not 2 -
especially for 2 train operation. They were averaging about 2 minutes of
stacking per ride - hanging in the rain is not fun (neither is standing in
it waiting). My opinion pretty much matches what I've heard from others,
the pretzel loop is very intense and impressive the rest of the ride is
completely void of...well..anything. I do have to say that the forces in
the pretzel loop are the strongest I've experienced on any B&M creation.
Liked the ride, but didn't love it - wouldn't wait in a line for it to ride
again with these kind of operations.
Really impressed with the theming and landscaping. The tigers are
absolutely beautiful. The giant turtles are cool. This area is nowhere as
big as I thought it was going to be. The pathway throughout is very narrow.
With Kindga Ka, the tiger show, and the new kiddie area - this is going to
be a MAJOR bottleneck and crowd control nightmare (I can see why there were
some concerns now). I would not want to be in this area on a crowded
day - it's going to be hell.
I am not a SFGadv fan boy - I actually have a real disdain for the park due
to some really negative experiences there. That being said, and as numerous
others have reported, I was quite suprised by some things at the park this
visit: SUPER friendly employees (really caught me off guard a few times),
the landscaping work at the park was extensive and impressive, a lot of
physical work has been done in regards to building repairs and painting.
Overall, the place looked great. With the exception of Superman,
operations were good - at least on par with PKD. Perhaps, I've not been
paying attention in the past, but there were no auto-spiels on any ride - I
have to say I like that. The park was very clean. Security was in force
everywhere and very much on top of rowdy kids (especially with basketballs)
and even (gasp) foul language! I was really impressed by all of this and
wish them the best of luck and keeping it up.
Last few notes:
We hooked up with Adam (FlyerAce) and SuperEllen for a little bit, as they
were on their way down to Wildwood for the weekend - They had heard from
some weatherman that we might be there that day - it's always great to see
them. Rolling Thunder was hauling in the rain - I think that's really the
only time you can enjoy it at this point, but I had some exemplerary rides
on it with true airtime. I am afraid that the Intamin woodie will replace
this, but I will keep my fingers crossed that it will stay and it will be
retracked and cared for (I know...fat chance, but I can dream). Viper is
coming down slowly and being ripped down, no thoughtful care on this one
(thank god). Food prices are outrageous but food was actually pretty
good. I'm going to save some choice words on Q-bot and gold Q-bot for
another post, but I don't think I really examined how this all worked in the
past and am pretty appalled. The ride tally for the day:
SUF -1 ride
Nitro - 4 rides
Skull Mountain - 1 ride
Rolling Thunder - 4 rides
Mine Train - 1 ride
Chiller - 1 ride
Jolly Roger - 1 ride (don't ask)
In all honesty, more than you could normally get on a busy summer day, and
we could've easily riden more but didn't want to with the weather.
Thanks for reading!
Long Live the Saturn 6!
Jim 'jimvid' McDonnell
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