Trip to Knott's (Sat 1/22/05)

Associated parks:
None

Monday, January 24, 2005 4:15 AM
I was going to do this Sat night, but because I never get exercise I was a little tired from walking more than 20 ft to my car...but anyway

Even as others said Knott's has been slow, I still expected it to be somewhat busy with the new coaster in, I mean sure it's winter, but it was still a Saturday.

It turned out to be a pretty calm day, got a little busier towards lunch, but the lines were still well under 30 min wait times. The longest line was Ghost Rider at about 25 min, which still wasn't bad.

This was my first visit in a long time to this park, so it was my first time riding pretty much everything. I must say though, everything I've heard about Ghost Rider being one of the best wooden coasters has really made me wonder why people like wooden coasters, are they all as jerky as that? The only woodies I've been on are Psyclone, Colossus, and now this, and Ghost Rider seemed almost as bad as Psyclone, but I don't remember Colossus being nearly as jerky as either!

I did love all the hills and negative g's, but they were hard to enjoy as I'm getting slammed from side to side, feeling my internal organs sloshing around. Is this just a personal reaction or does anybody else have this problem with this ride?

As for the new one Silver Bullet, I thought it was an excellent coaster. Taller than Batman, and by far much smoother! The rolls are enjoyable, whereas in Batman you get tossed through them and are more unpleasant than anything. Everything just seems to be done much better, especially the braking, it is a much more softer stop than the quick jerking stop that is on Batman. Only thing I thought was lame was the theme, but who really pays much attention to that stuff anyway?

Xcelerator was really sweet, the only downside is knowing there is a version being made over twice it's side, I wish they would upgrade this one to match! I rode it twice, once up front, once in the back. Not sure which was the best, it seemed to launch faster from the front, but the back you get pulled over the top which I think makes it a better spot....plus the line for the front isn't really worth it.

Overall my experience was very positive in comparison with Magic Mountain. The location is much better in a cooler spot than Magic Mountain, and the park isn't spread out as far and over hills, which make Magic Mountain a pain to walk around through. What really impressed me was that even with the short lines and low attendance, rides like Silver Bullet were using both it's trains, while Magic Mountain tends to opt for less whenever possible, resulting in agonizing lines in the blistering heat.

I think Magic Mountain has some serious competition, they still have more coasters, and I still have yet to ride X which I really want to do, but my outlook of Knotts has gone from a pidly less than good coaster park, to something I'll seriously consider in the future when deciding where to go. I didn't even stay the whole day, which was nice because I didn't feel cheated at all because we rode pretty much everything we wanted to, something I don't ever remember doing at Magic Mountain!

Well that was my trip, I took a few pictures with my camera phone, so don't expect top notch quality. I also recorded some video of Xcelerator launching off, probably some of the worst quality video you can find, but hey it's a quick download ;)

Pictures:
Silver Bullet
Silver Bullet-Helix
Silver Bullet-loop
Xcelerator-from distance
Silver Bullet-Sunset
Video:
Xcelerator launch-very low quality (178k)

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Monday, January 24, 2005 4:59 AM
This seems to much like a trip report to me. Still clad to see you had a good time.
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Monday, January 24, 2005 10:37 AM
Too much of a trip report? Umm hello we are in the "Trip Report" category!

Nice TR...wish I could go to the West Coast and ride some of these rides, visit some of these parks...

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Monday, January 24, 2005 11:16 AM
Yes, that's because I moved it... it was in the general forum.
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Monday, January 24, 2005 11:40 AM
2 weeks removed from visting Southern Cali, I can say that my back seat ride on Ghostrider was exactly how xboxizdope described. It was very rough, and while there were many great pops of air, I was too busy trying to avoid getting thrown all over the place. A little too painful for my liking, and completely different rides then what I had gotten 2 years earlier on my last visit. However, my front seat ride did provide a dramatic difference, still nice pops of air, and a little less jerky, definately delivering a better ride. Still wouldn't consider this coaster a "great ride" and IMO Boulder Dash is far superior.

As far as the rest of my park experience went, it was amazing. Spent 2 days at the park in the middle of the week, it was completely empty both days, every single ride (Silver bullet included) was a walk on both days. The crews were excellent and extremely friendly (Especially the Xcelerator crew), and the park stood open till its scheduled closing time, even though it seemed like both days there were under 1,000 people in the park all day.

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Monday, January 24, 2005 2:04 PM
Ghostrider can give very different rides. The first time I rode it was during the day, in the last car. It was fun, but very bumpy. We went back at night, and rode in the front seat. Holy smokes; that's what all the hype was about! Silky smooth, loads of air time, laterals, and constant speed. It was almost an entirely different ride.

A couple months later, we went during the late morning and rode near the front, and while fun, was not as good as either of my other two rides.

Makes me wonder, is this a coaster that needs a day of warming up to reach its full potential? Are night rides the best? Moosh, you know a lot about Knott's... care to shed any light on Ghostrider?

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Monday, January 24, 2005 6:01 PM
I can't remember where I was sitting in Ghostrider, but I think it was somewhere in the middle. It was around 1:30 in the after noon, so maybe it would have been better earlier in the day. I'm glad I don't have any neck or back problems, or I probably would have died lol.

I did forget to mention how the employees seemed to enjoy working at the park, which I would assume anyone 18-22 would love to work at such a place, even if the pay wasn't the best, but Magic Mountain employees seem like they are sick of tourists. I did see a lot of Knott's business employees though, so maybe they knew some higher ups would be walking around and didn't want to get caught in a bad mood.

I think the funniest part was when the closed Silver Bullet down for about 20 minutes, then ran it a couple times empty, then some of those business men were riding it in the middle. It just looked funny from the ground because they had their hands together like they were sitting in church while going through loops and barrel rolls, I don't know it just looked funny at the time.

Anyway now I want to check out Magic Mountain because it's been almost 3 years since my last visit, and even with the annoyed employees, long walking distances, and extreme heat, the rides still kick some serious tail. Hopefully Magic Mountain will have some good promotions soon, I just want to get in before the summer rush.

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Monday, January 24, 2005 9:28 PM
I rode Ghostrider the day after you were there and I can vouch for how rough it was. It was one of the roughest rides I've ever had on it. I hear the ride is supposed to get retracked soon, it needs it.
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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 4:29 PM
Ghostrider will be closed for two weeks in late February for bi-annual maintenance and reopen for the park's Solace event.
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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 4:39 PM
For those of you complaining about the backseat ride, I found riding in the row right in front of the last row provides the same airtime as the back seat but not all the bumpiness. YRMV
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