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Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:58 pm
by Canobie Coaster
Gillian's Wonderland Pier

About a 10 minute walk down the boardwalk from Playland's Castaway Cove is another seaside park in Gillian's Wonderland Pier. With GaleForce and that lovely Miler getting all of the attention on these boards, I haven't heard much about Gillian's in a long time. I will also note that I have quite a few photos that I took from the Giant Wheel and I got permission from the operator before taking these photos.

Entrance.JPG
Another great entrance for a boardwalk park.

Before visiting, I noticed that they had 2 new rides for 2017 that looked like they'd be the best attractions in the park, a Larson/ARM drop tower and a crazy flat called the Super Flipping Arm. Unfortunately neither ride was open yet. The Super Flipping Arm looked almost complete, but I didn't see any work at all for the drop tower. Hopefully they can get these two rides open sooner than their rival down the street gets their rides open.

Super Flipping Arm.JPG
The plainly named Super Flipping Arm looks very close to opening. The new drop tower is nowhere to be found.

With these two flats not open or MIA, the park's star attraction was the Canyon Falls Log Flume. I was expecting a compact flume with a drop or two like most boardwalk flumes. I was right about the ride being compact, but the flume exceeded all my expectations and was one of the better ones I've been on. Located underneath a deck, the ride has some surprisingly good theming to the west and Indians. The final drop is also really good and I enjoyed diving back underneath the deck. 9 out of 10

Canyon Falls Log Flume Splashdown (Aerial).JPG
Most of the flume is built underneath the deck.

Canyon Falls Log Flume Theming.JPG
It's no Disney, but I was not expecting this type of theming at a boardwalk park.

Canyon Falls Log Flume Drop (Far).JPG
Obligatory shot of the final (and only) plunge.

Canyon Falls Log Flume Drop (Close).JPG
Guess the kid in front doesn't like log flumes.

Canyon Falls Log Flume Splashdown (Ground).JPG
Say hi to the Indian during the photo.

Gillian's does have two roller coasters before I get distracted by how good the flume is. The larger of the two is the Runaway Train. This coaster was extremely similar to the one I rode at the Granby Zoo last year except the final turn didn't feel like a jackhammer. The first drop was pretty good and because of its compactness, it had pretty good whip in the back. The turns were nothing to write home about, but they were smooth. This is a really good family coaster and I'd take it over a Wild Mouse or a Galaxy clone. 6 out of 10

Runaway Train Lift Hill.JPG
The larger of the two coasters is the Runaway Train...because that's the name on the ride.

Runaway Train Brake Run.JPG
Roaring into the brakes at 1/4 of the speed of El Toro.

Runaway Train First Drop.JPG
The ride is really compact and I'd take this over a wild mouse any day (unless it's in a giant box).

Now for the coaster everyone is waiting for, the Wacky Worm. Usually when I ride kiddie coasters, I'm not the only one in the train. Well in this case, I was the only one. Apparently a 24 year old man riding a Wacky Worm without a kid flags you as a coaster enthusiast since the operator asked which coaster club I belonged to. I proudly got my credit and it's a Wacky Worm. As far as kiddie coasters go, these are one of the more comfortable designs out there. 2 out of 10

Wacky Worm Drop.JPG
Wacky Worm being all wacky.

Wacky Worm Turn.JPG
How could I have been so lucky to get an entire train to myself?

I also checked out the park's dark ride, which is aptly called the Haunted Dark Ride. I was expecting a cheesy carnival haunted house with cheep effects and loud noises, but this one actually had really well kept effects and didn't look run down in the least bit. 7 out of 10

Haunted Dark Ride.JPG
I was pretty impressed by this dark ride. It wasn't your typical $5 budget carnival ride and was really well kept.

The last ride I went on was the park's Giant Wheel. With its close proximity to the Atlantic and a few parks, I figured the wheel would give some good photo opportunities and it delivered. I probably had a 5 minute ride and had plenty of time to take in the views. I really think Ocean City is one of the nicest boardwalks I've visited and it'd be the best in New Jersey if it weren't for a boardwalk about 45 minutes south that may be covered in the next report I post. As far as wheels go, I can't think of a better wheel except for the two I've been on with swinging cars. 10 out of 10

Giant Wheel.JPG
This wheel can be thanked for about half the photos in this report.

Midway.JPG
Spinny rides galore.

Airborne Shot.JPG
This has to be one of the most compact flats I've seen but it was closed due to construction on the Super Flipping Arm.

Glass House.JPG
Calling this a house is a bit of a stretch in my opinion.

Beach.JPG
I didn't venture to the beach but it did look nice.

Playland's Castaway Cove.JPG
I see you GaleForce. I would have loved to get this with a train in view, but with the glacial dispatches it wasn't meant to be.

Ocean Beach Water Park.JPG
A relatively small water park in between Gillian's and Playland.

I didn't stick around too long since I wanted to get to Morey's, but I took a few photos of some other rides. I was particularly intrigued by the Thomas the Tank engine ripoff Monorail that ran around the entire park.

Monorail Track.JPG
If they weren't going for a Thomas the Tank engine look, you have me fooled.

Carousel.JPG
The obligatory carousel photo.

Skooter.JPG
Passed on the bumper cars. I had enough driving whoring the Jersey Shore.

The park has a pretty good collection of family rides. It was lacking in the thrill category, but the two "New for 2017" rides should fill that void when they open. Of the two parks, I think I preferred Gillian's. I thought the park looked nicer and had a better overall collection of rides even though it did lack a major thrilling coaster. But if I did return to Ocean City, I think I'd spend a little time at each park.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:27 pm
by The Great Zo
Another great report, and really loved the aerial shots of the beach. Ocean City was one of several beaches / boardwalks I stopped at along the east coast last year, and it was definitely my favorite of the batch -- though I admit I didn't stop at Wildwood, which I'm sure I'll rectify some day.

Gillians indeed looks quite nice -- put an ARM tower in and it's definitely worth a visit!

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:52 pm
by Canobie Coaster
Any park with an ARM tower is worth visiting. Those towers are better than ~75-80% of the coasters out there and this one will probably give one of the best views.

You really do need to visit Wildwood someday. Morey's has an ARM tower already plus a ton of other great flats, some solid coasters, dark rides, a flume, and a great atmosphere.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:26 am
by cfc
I'll have to pay a visit to the Jersey Shore one of these days. I have a feeling that the dark rides at some parks will be a bit more entertaining than the coasters.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:34 am
by Canobie Coaster
Honestly I am finding that the log flumes have been the surprise hits of the Jersey Shore parks. The dark rides were pretty good too. None of them were those cheap pop up ones you see at carnivals.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:47 pm
by boldikus
Nice update. I've never done the rides in Ocean City and hadn't even considered Gillians, though I did know about it. This report just convinced me I should stop there as well.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 3:28 pm
by larrygator
I did not realize they were adding Super Flip and the ARM Tower this year. The other flat you posted Airborne Shot) was only about 3 years ago. The haunted house was quite the pleasant surprise when Gillian's decided to build it about 5 years ago. I might have to put a few more quarters in the meter and stop at Gillian's after going to Playland's Castaway Cove.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 3:44 pm
by Canobie Coaster
^ I didn't realize it either until I checked their website before visiting. I'm not even sure where they plan to place it since there was no signs of construction. When I checked out the park index, I didn't realize they had an old Slingshot drop tower sometime in the past so is the new one replacing it?

boldikus wrote:Nice update. I've never done the rides in Ocean City and hadn't even considered Gillians, though I did know about it. This report just convinced me I should stop there as well.


It's right there and free admission, so it's definitely worth stopping in for. If you're lucky, you'll get the two new rides during your visit.

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:05 pm
by cparkes92
Canobie Coaster wrote:^ I didn't realize it either until I checked their website before visiting. I'm not even sure where they plan to place it since there was no signs of construction. When I checked out the park index, I didn't realize they had an old Slingshot drop tower sometime in the past so is the new one replacing it?

boldikus wrote:Nice update. I've never done the rides in Ocean City and hadn't even considered Gillians, though I did know about it. This report just convinced me I should stop there as well.


It's right there and free admission, so it's definitely worth stopping in for. If you're lucky, you'll get the two new rides during your visit.


I wouldn't be surprised if at least one of the new rides is open. NJ summer doesn't really start until around the 4th of July (schools tend to go well into June in the Northeast, but don't start back up until after Labor Day)

Re: Photo TR: Canobie Coaster's 2017 US Adventures

PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 8:04 pm
by Canobie Coaster
That makes some sense. I think my visit to Casino Pier in mid-June was the first day they had a majority of the rides open.