Volcanomania Trip: Part 2

Associated parks:
None

Friday, April 9, 2004 8:14 PM
Paramount's Carowinds
April 4, 2004

Weather: Sunny and windy, high in the mid 60's
Coasters Ridden: 10 of 12
New to me: All 10

This is part two of my three part Volcanomania Trip report.

We arrived at the park at about noon after several hours of driving from Durham, where we stayed the night. We got a decent parking spot and headed into the park. I had a free ticket for the park from Eastcoaster, and my ACE membership got me a 50% off discount, so collectively we paid just $22 for the two of us to get in. Cool.

The park has a nice entrance area, with the North Carolina/South Carolina border right down the center of the entrance. Of course, I had Rachel stand on the border for a picture. The first thing we headed for was Borg: Assimilator.

The line was fairly long, but we did not wait too long, after about 20 minutes we got to where there was a single riders line, and headed down that. After about another ten minutes we were on, and even were seated next to each other. The ride was fun, I think I like Batwing better, but Borg still gives a great ride, with a good theme. I also love how it "flies" close over the water, and I expectably liked the Borg sphere which you "fly" around. Rachel loved it. She is moving to Waldorf, MD, and is happy to know that one is going to be so close by.

It seems that Borg may eventually prove to be more reliable. I don't know how Stealth was set up, but Borg has the chair lift mechanism built into the station, so it does not have all that computer hardware on the train running though all the twists and turns as well as the elements. Even so, they were still running only one train, it looked like the other was still being worked on. No matter, the park was not so busy. We did want to go on it later on in the day, but it was completely down by then, so it was a good thing we got it in when we did.

Next we hit Scooby Doo's Ghoster Coaster. It like all the other PTC trains in the park, has been refitted with seatbelts. It was a fun ride, but did not seem to run as well as the same coaster at PDK.

One coaster that was far better then it's version at PKD was Hurler. It was screaming this day, running very well with airtime on every hill. We both loved it. I don't understand how two coasters that on the outside seem so much the same can run so very different.

Also a surprising ride was Vortex. I am not really a fan of stand-ups, but this is certainly one of the better ones I have been on. It was smooth, had a good series of elements, and was not too long. I really liked it. It also looks like it was sporting a brand new paint job, it even looked good!

I also really, really liked Top Gun. It is tough for me to choose which invert I like better, Top Gun or Talon. I love Talon's ground hugging helixes, but Top Gun's batwing (or does B&M call this a cobra roll, I like to go by Arrow terms) through the mist filled tunnel is simply spectacular. This is really a great ride, and best of all, there was no line at all, we rode it over and over without even getting off, very re-ridable.

The Carolina Cyclone took me by surprise. It is a fairly smooth Arrow loop-screw, and has a helix towards the end that you can't see from the ground, so it was very unexpected. Carowind's other Arrow coaster, the Carolina Goldrusher, was equally good.

Super Saturator was open and running in the morning, but by the time we got over to it, it had closed down. Neither of us were particularly interested in the ride, so we never ventured past it again to see if it had opened back up. Runaway Reptar was running, and was a fun ride. Their mouse, Ricochet, was a decent ride as well, with little braking in the zig-zags, but a bit too much before the drops. We even got completely braked over the station.

Thunder Road was running just one train backwards, but two forward, so it was not racing. While it was a good ride, I think I enjoyed PKD's Rebel Yell more. Thunder Road just didn't seem to have the umpth that Rebel Yell had the previous day.

The park over all is very nice. Each section of the park is very loosely themed, each looking a little different, and each very nicely kept. The landscaping looked great. and there were a lot of fountains and little streams throughout the park, adding a lot to the atmosphere. There was no trash laying about, and the bathrooms were very clean. The employees were courteous, but were not as outwardly friendly as those at PKD.

Most of the flats were running, but Drop Zone had experienced some problems and shut down before we got to ride. We did get to ride their Schwarzkopf Enterprise, which went by a different name that I can't recall. It had some classic cars on it though, and rode great, but the cycle was too short. I think that and the carousel (a PTC) and the only flats we actually rode, as we just took our time in the park enjoying the day.

We left at about 5:30. The hotel was only ten minutes away, so no long drive tonight, but the drive to Pigeon Forge tomorrow would prove to be longer then expected.

Pictures can be found here:

http://www.penncoasters.com/tripreports/Carowinds/040404/040404.htm

*** Edited 4/10/2004 12:14:59 AM UTC by Black 7***

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Monday, April 12, 2004 10:59 AM

Black 7 said:
Top Gun's batwing (or does B&M call this a cobra roll, I like to go by Arrow terms) through the mist filled tunnel is simply spectacular.

If you're talking about this type of element it's called a B&M Batwing or an Arrow Boomerang.

Nice TR, I like it's format. *** Edited 4/12/2004 3:00:17 PM UTC by person***

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