At any rate, as the day began, it didn't look like it was going to be a good day. It was raining out, and the forcast called for rain all day. This was frustrating, but since we came over 700 miles for this, it wasn't like we had a choice of whether to go or not. So we headed out and arrived at the park around 9:30. As it rained, my wife and I used our passes and headed into the park, while the rest of my family got their passes processed.
After waiting for a while (there were 5 of them getting done), I noticed that the Fjord Fjarlane was running, and my wife and I hopped on that quickly. It wasn't anything spectacular, but it was better than sitting around waiting. Besides, I like flats, and my wife loves them, so we try to ride as many as we can. When we got off, the rest of my family was just entering the park, and it was almost 10:00. Perfect timing.
Even though it was still raining, we decided to head back to the Mamba, and scope things out. When we got back there a small line had formed outside the queue, and we joined it. They were testing the trains, so that was a good sign. I was actually a little surprised since I know that at CP, if there's any rain at all they seem to shut all the large rides down, but it appeared they were going to run Mamba. Sure enough, after a short wait, they let us into the queue, and we were up into the station, waiting for the front.
Minutes later, we were strapped in and headed off.... into the rain! As we climbed the first lift right into the decending rain, I got the feeling that this may be a rough ride. I still had my glasses on, as I'd forgotten to leave them in the car, and I quickly realized that as they got water on them. By the time I stuffed them into my inner coat pocket, we were at the top. The trip over the top was surprisingly slow, as we just sort of hung there at the top, and it seemed as if the ride got stuck. But it went over and zoomed down the hill, before racing back up the second.
Now, I'd never rode a coaster in the rain before, but I'd read what people here have said about it. Well, those who said it was painfull were right! As we shot up the second hill on Mamba, our faces were pelted with raindrops doubling as little BB's, causing us to close our eyes. I just don't go for that on coasters, so I forced them open and squinted.
Rain aside, the first drop was great and the air over the second hill was fabulous. The double helix was also a rush, and the bunny hills along the backside gave great air. As we came back to the platform, I was all wet, and a little sore from the rain, but definitely excited. That was a great ride!
We (Wife, Dad, Brother, 10 yr. old Sister) rode it again a second time, even though we all agreed the rain was brutal. But when a coaster of that size and fun level is walk-on, you take advantage of it, rain or shine. The second ride I rode in the front of the last train car. Once again, painful as heck from the rain, but a great ride with even more air. My wife and I hopped on for a 3rd consecutive ride, although the rest of my family didn't (due to all waiting for the front the first time, our rides were staggered, and we were hopping back on as they were hopping off), and we rode in the front again. Once again, great ride, but the rain was bonkers! By this time though we had managed to know how to ride it with our eyes squinted and enjoy it more.
So after being there for a mere half hour, we had already rode Mamba 3 times! We wanted to come back later and ride it when it stopped raining. We went back to the Boomerang, and walked right on for 2 rides, one in back, one in front. I like that ride, and had rode it actually twice before, at SF:EG, and SF:FT. My wife isn't crazy about it though, as it is too jerky for her, but I guess I tolerate that a little more.
I could go on and on in great detail, but I won't. (I'm a writer, so I apologize for all of my long winded posts) In quick, fly-by form, here is an overview of the rest of the day.
Mamba: We came back to ride it after the rain had stopped, and got in line for the front. However, somebody puked on the ride, and they took forever to clean it up. We got out of line, and sure enough, as soon as we leave, they start the ride up again. That's just my luck! But we were able to come back and ride it later, after checking out some of the rest of the park. After 3 more rainless rides, it was agreed by both my wife and I: it is a great ride. I always got tons of airtime, and the helixes are first-rate. The only thing I don't quite get is the slow cresting of the hill, but I'm sure there's some reason for it. Wait time was never more than 10 minutes, even for the front. We had one more ride on it and I'll get to that later.
Timber Wolf: This might have been my wife's favorite ride here. I too, really liked it, and I don't like a lot of jerky woodies. Neither does my wife for that matter. But this one, although still pretty jerky, was really good, and a fun ride to boot! The air time on this ride was great, and on my last ride, with the seat belt loose, I got more air than I think I ever have on a coaster before. It was incredible! We rode it 3 times, and wait time was 10 mins. or less each time, twice in the front, once in the second seat.
Orient Express: This one is hard to categorize. The original steel looping coaster genre, which this is a part of, all tend to be a little rough, and seem a bit tame as well. While at one time the premier coaster experience, they have quickly faded to the back of the pack as technology has advanced, and brought us so many varied steel coaster experiences. All this being said, just about any coaster of this type rates low in my book. It seems the only one that has really been able to transcend time (that I've ridden), is the LNM at BGW. However, the OE was not really that bad of a ride, at least comparatively accross the genre. My brother hated it, but he hates all of these kind of coasters now. My wife and I both thought it was allright. The interlocking loops are a great touch, although still outdone by LNM; and the tree lined location was nice, since most looping steel coasters are just stuck above conrete somewhere, with little personality. All in all, not a bad ride, though the wait was a little longer than some of the other rides since there was only one train operation. It was about 15 mins. One note of interest: we were almost up the life hill, when the train stopped suddenly on the hill. The girls behind us started freaking, but it didn't really bother me, as we had all day to wait. Turned out someone's restraint didn't lock, and they had to come up and manually check us. After that, we just continued up the hill and did the ride. No biggie.
Detonator: Nice, but not anything close to the PT at CP. Only launchingup was a bummer, since the lauch down is generaly considered the better experience. Nobody wanted to really ride the ride, and I ended up riding it with my 10 yr. old sister. At least she liked it.
Viking Voyage: Short and sweet. Not much to say about this ride except I actually got my shoe wet. That's about it. Good, but not great. Walk on.
Cyclone Sam's: I think this was our longest wait of the day, probably around 20 - 25 mins. I thought the ride was actually pretty cool, although I was crushed on it. I think more parks should incorporate traditional flats into a dark environment for a special ride experience. I went to a boardwalk in NJ once and rode a ride that was the Scrambler, but in a dark room with flashing strobes and mist. Pretty cool! Cyclone Sam's was a good ride, and I would have ridden it again had the wait not been so long.
ThunderHawk: It was an overcast and not very warm day, so water rides were not really that appealing. However, this one was so cool looking, that my brother and I had to ride it. We borrowed our parent's parkas that they had bought earlier when it was raining, and tried to get as far over to the sides as we could. Unfortunately, we were still on the front row, and I was in the 4th or 5th seat from the end. The ride was great, and would have been really enjoyable on a warmer day, if I wasn't wearing brand new shoes. As it was, I stayed mostly dry, but I did get one foot and leg wet. Still, a cool ride, and an innovative idea. No wait time.
Other rides ridden: Finnish Fling (I love the old "Rotor" rides!), Octopus (lousy, had no individual spin whatsoever), Zulu (night ride, nice), and Sea Dragon (nice boat ride, though not as good as some I've ridden, 2 rides, one at night, last ride of our day).
We had ridden everything we wanted to by 3:00 in the afternoon, and my wife, brother, and I decided to leave the park and come back later for a night ride on Mamba. We went to a local cinema and saw a movie, then went to Applebee's and had dinner. After a brief return to our hotel to rest, and wait for darkness, we returned to the park. My brother decided to skip the night ride, as he had a long drive home in order to get back in time for work. So my wife and I went it alone.
Everyone was leaving as we were coming, which was kinda' funny to see. They probably wondered what we were up to. We headed right back to the Mamba, and got in line for the front seat. There was still a decent crowd here, as others wanted some night rides also. We ended up waiting about 15 - 20 mins. as they had reduced the ride to one train operation (not sure why), but that's really not bad. The night ride was great, and I was glad we waited for it. The speed just seems so much better at night, and I got loads of air time this time.
See, all day I had been running the seat belt through my hat loop to keep it from getting blown away, and this time when I did that and pulled the bar down, the hat flopped over the bar. That resulted in the seat belt now locking into a stretched position, and it instead now hung over the bar with my hat. So basically I wasn't wearing any seat belt! The result on the ride was awesome air time that was almost like standing up going down the hills. I love it when that happens! :-) Final tally on the Mamba: 7 rides, 4 in the front seat, 1 in the front of the second car, and 2 in the front of the back car. 3 in the rain, 4 out, and 1 at night.
As you could probably tell, the park wasn't crowded at all, especially in the morning when we got to ride everything. More people showed up in the afternoon, but that's when we left for a while. In the end, the poor weather (rainy early, cold throughout) contributed to a great day at the park, and we got to do everything we wanted to. Not your typical Saturday I'm sure, even at this time of year. I am really surprised that they ran Mamba in the rain, as I had never seen a park operate a large coaster in the rain before. But I'm glad they did! (Even though it did hurt like heck, it was an all new ride experience for me!)
So that was my WOF trip. I think it is a nice park, about on par with Valleyfair!, but still a bit small. I can't imagine going there often, but I'm glad I was able to go, and especially because Mamba was great! I think Valleyfair! might be a little better, especially now with Steel Venom, and the free water park, but WOF was still nice.
My wife and I drove to Columbia to stay the night (in a dive I might add- but it was cheap, so...), and headed to SF:StL the next day to complete our Missouri amusement park swing. But I will tell about that in a seperate trip report, which I will write tomorrow. I hope you all find this interesting, and I'm sorry if I bored you. I just can't keep my writer tendancies down! ;-)
Take care and God bless!
*** This post was edited by DILinator 5/27/2003 1:34:36 AM ***
Summer 03-CP, HP, Canobie, SFNE, SFWOA, and SFGAm.
When was the last time you drove 251 km/h (156 mph)?
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