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Satchboogie3

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About Satchboogie3

  • Birthday 12/31/1987

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  1. This will be a bit lengthy of a post. I spur of the moment decided to head back to Germany last weekend to kill two birds with one stone: Get back to Phantasialand to get some night rides (the park is open until 8pm for the Wintertraum!) and checkout the Christmas markets in Köln and Düsseldorf. With the temperature around 5C and cloudy, I wasn't too surprised to find Taron and FLY running a little sluggish. They both seemed to be running faster after night fall, but that could just be the dark messing with me . Rookburgh looked great with a lot of steam/fog. Minimally placed Christmas stuff was a smart choice I think to keep with the theming. There are number of cute little areas with snow scenes around the park. It was around 5C and cloudy so the snow wasn't melting much. One of few Wintertraum chalets - flame grilled salmon. It was actually pretty good, very juicy and cooked just long enough. There's nothing worse than overcooked salmon Upside tree is a nice touch outside Hotel Tartuff Gluhwein! A few visits to chalet helped keep me warm throughout the day Hard to see in the photo, but there is a santa with a sack and gifts up in the little tower in front of Black Mamba. I thought it might not be a bad idea to go on Chiapas Die Wasserbahn. It's maybe my all-time favorite flume and a water ride in the middle of a cold December day seemed adventurous... yeah, I got soaked... maybe not the best decision. But nothing more Gluhweinn can't fix! Taron looked wild at night back on Halloween and was even better this night! Oh foggy night 20211218_173855.mp4 Berlin was basically a Christmas market! Last time at the park after sunset, Rookburgh didn't have much for lighting besides the normal lanterns and white lights. This time there were a lot of red, green, and blue lights, with some alternating from the tunnels. The two night rides I got were easily the best experience I've had yet on FLY. Killer night ride. The park really came to life at night. I'm tempted to take the train back out there in January before the Wintertraum ends. And for Bonus content. The Phantasialand bus departs from Bruhl station, just outside the center of town. I had a bit of time to kill before the first bus so wandered a bit. If you are taking the bus, it isn't a bad idea to take a look around. The Augustusburg Palace is right across from the bus stop and is a UNESCO site (I didn't take photos because of construction and poor lighting, but it's a site to walk around) and the center of town is pretty. The Christmas market was small but very charming as well. Heading into the center of Bruhl Bruhl Christmas market On to Koln: A stay in Koln wouldn't be complete without visiting a few Kolsch breweries! (After all my Kolsch experiences, Reissdorf is still best!) There are a number of Christmas markets spread throughout the city. I visited 3 of them over the coarse of the weekend (I think that means I need to go back to check out the rest... ) First up is the Koln Cathedral Market: Pretty good backdrop! Maybe my favorite thing of the markets: Raclette! Stellar board of cheese from the Swiss Alps Wood fire BBQ pork and chicken! Good food was abundant. Koln Harbour market: The harbour market was pretty unique and looked fantastic (plus the place to go for seafood), though my favorite was hands-down the Heinzel's WinterMarchen in Altstadt: Buble Alpe was a great spot to stop for a half litre of lager and enjoy watching the skaters. The mini ski lift of gnomes was adorable (and it moved and everything)! Mühlen bear with a tray of Kölsch Delicious Apfelkrapfen Brass section performing Lastly I stopped in Düsseldorf Sunday afternoon for some Altbier and more Christmas markets. First stop Schumacher brewery, the first brewery to use the name Altbier for the unique local beer back in 1838. Fuchschen hosted most of the markets in Dusseldorf. It's good too! More Gluhwein in a mug I had to have. Glass blowing Uerige Brewery. Claimed to use the most 'bittering constituents' of any beer in Germany. I'm not sure if it is the most bitter, but it is certainly bitter and absolutely delicious. My favorite Altbier in Dusseldorf. A magical weekend trip. I would highly recommend anyone that can to experience Koln and Phantasialand in December!
  2. Just got back from the park today, my first time at a park during the Christmas season. The park was gorgeous. I also much enjoyed FLY and Rookburgh after dark this time. Early this year, the lighting seemed very basic with the old bronze light theming. Today there was a ton of red and blue lighting, plus great fog/steam coming from the tunnels. Really made for an amazing night ride. I'll post a TR when I'm back in Belgie, with some bonus German Christmas market content
  3. I finally made it back out to the park on Halloween! I was excited to check out F.L.Y and the rides I had missed on my previous trip a few years ago. The weather turned out great (mild fall temps and the rain held off until the evening). I was impressed by F.L.Y. Based on reviews, I was expecting a very mild ride, but it was pleasantly forceful (there were a lot of dives where you really feel pulled down and a few good pops of airtime) and a ton of fun. The interaction with the area is really awesome. It is a great ride. If you are a steam-punk fan, it will blow your mind. I will say that I'm not, so I do still prefer Taron, ride and theming wise. I also preferred Taron at night, lit up with cool colors, where as FLY was just white-light, but I it did stay true to the theming. The park didn't seem too busy. The longest I waited was ~45 minutes for Taron around 11am. The lines completely cleared up after 12 (This seems to be a thing in Germany? Everyone seemed to queue up for lunch while Taron went from 50 minutes to literally 10 minutes from 12:30-1:30ish!). I took advantage of this and got a solid 7 or 8 rides on Taron between 12:30 and 2ish. Black Mamba was practically a walk-on all day and most other rides where at most 20 minutes. I think FLY was 30-45 minutes all day (I got 2 rides, 1 at the start of the day in the front row and another later afternoon with ~45 minute wait. I know the advertised capacity is more than Taron, but the line felt way slower. Taron was killing it with quick 4-train op). After around 12 rides on Taron, I would say front left seat is where it's at. The trims before the last airtime hill were on (I can't recall if this was the case when I was there a few years ago), it's really a shame as it completely kills that last hill (you still get floater air). Kind of like Konda, I feel the last 10-20 seconds of Taron leave a lot to be desired, and I just wish there was more airtime. I do other wise love the ride though. This was my first time at the park after dark and Taron absolutely was amazing at night! The dark and lighting really add the experience. I also got a ride on Black Mamba on the way out and it felt completely out of control in the dark! I tried to upload a video of FLY, but it won't load for some reason. On to some pictures: FLY as you enter from the main park entrance View from an open-air section of the queue On to Taron, my favorite part of the park Andech's Hell's break before heading back to FLY Back to Taron as the sun started to go down. I LOVE the red lit second launch! Anyone know how to flip this image? It inverted on uploading!
  4. I made it down to Walibi Saturday night for the start of their Fright Night. I got to say I was pretty impressed by the Halloween theming! I didn't do any of the paid things, but they look good, especially wicked woods. I went in the evening primarily to get night rides on Konda. The park usually closes at 6pm during the summer, but these two weekends the park is open until 10! So on to Konda. It was definitely a fun experience at night, as I almost always love night rides. It was chilly and raining most of the night though, so it wasn't running particularly fast. I was happy that the singles line was finally open! Ride ops did a great job of filling the trains and running an efficient two-train op. I got probably close to 10 rides in just a few hours before 9ish PM. As much fun as Konda is, when it hits the break run, I always feel disappointed that it missed out on the opportunity to be really special. Such great moments and an interesting layout on the 2nd half, but the second half just feels slugish and a bit tame, and I still find the non-inverting cobra roll pointless. I might head back next weekend for the last of the Halloween Fright nights (trying to convince my friends out here to go, but none of them are really into amusement parks or Halloween...). Konda at night! Queue entrance Mine train Rebellion land, a rave kind of outdoor party. It was actually pretty cool! 20211030_211817.mp4 Haunted Circus setup
  5. How are crowds in DE/Europe this time of year? I'm thinking of heading back to Phantasialand maybe next weekend, but don't really want to go if it'll be packed.
  6. I visited the park this morning and got 6 rides in on Kondaa. My initial reaction a month ago, Kondaa was the first coaster I had ridden in almost 2 years due to covid. Now having ridden Untamed, Goliath, and revisiting Kondaa, it was a little underwhelming. Granted, it's morning and I expect it will warm up a bit (it was a warm morning though). Pretty much my breakdown is the same, I love the first drop and two hills, the non-inverting cobra roll doesn't do anything for me (its just going too slow through the transitions at the top to give any good forces), and the last 3rd isn't very forceful. I think it losses too much speed and the elements aren't tight/extreme enough. It definitely pales in comparison to Untamed. And upon reflection, Expedition GeForce is still my #1/2 with Untamed. I don't think the first drop or first two airtime hills are as extreme as on Expedition GeForce either. It's still a really fun coaster and still maybe top 5 for me, probably my 3rd favorite in Europe so far. It's better than Taron for sure The ride ops at Kondaa are rock stars. They luckily are loading all rows, but consistently now with my visits, they have the train headed up the lift by as soon as the other train hits the breaks. Very smooth and fast . If your visiting Walibi, definitely get there as early as possible. I arrived at 8:31 from the train and the line grew pretty quickly. They set up a really long queue path at the entrance due to covid. It literally takes 10 minutes just to walk it! I managed to be 2nd in line for Untamed and got 6 rides in by 11:05.
  7. The restraints do suck! There is a bit of rattle and squeeking that's developed. I do miss the pre-incident days with the old restraints. As a side, the newer restraints, like on Kondaa, are amazing. You no longer get sore thighs from a lot of re rides with them. Very comfy!
  8. Not idea, I've been taking the train down . I'll check, I may try to get down Saturday morning...
  9. Day 2: I headed down to Helenaveen to stay at Hotel Eetcafé In d'Ouwe Peel for the night. 6 minutes from Toverland, this little Inn was very charming! Small rooms with shared bathrooms, but everything was very 'homey' and clean and the staff was very welcoming. Local Belgian ale just across the border. They also serve all of the La Trappe beers! Solid stoofvlees. The upstairs rooms have a shared terrace and there's a terrace for the restaurant on the other side of the building. I can't recommend this place enough if you need a place to stay around Toverland. You aren't going to find a better price or better service! Did I just go through a teleport? On to Toverland! At the park, I saw QR codes for the Toverland app. Of course, my account is still linked to the US, so I was unable to download it. I did find a work around: there's an app (APKcombo) you can download that gets around the regional locks Once the gates opened I headed back to Fenix. Due to covid, the actual queue through the building was closed, instead you went up the emergency exit at the back right of the station. I got into the station and was very confused when there was no one there! The ride gates were open, the lights were off and there literally were no employees. I waited until a few minutes past 10 before deciding to just head over to Troy. It was really odd. Luckily the line for Troy was still pretty short still. I got two quick rides in, front row 2nd car and one in the middle train. I didn't go in with much expectation as I'm generally not the biggest GCI fan. I found the pacing to be pretty good, but otherwise not very memorable (I didn't really get any airtime or strong forces). The line started to grow after the second ride so I headed over to Booster Bike! At this point most of the lines were at about 30 minutes and for the most part the lines varied between 20 and 45 minutes for most rides throughout the day. Booster Bike was quite a unique ride and pretty fun! Next up, Fenix! Surprisingly the line for Fenix was probably the shortest for any ride at the park. It was only a 5 minute wait when I got over and I think the longest I waited all day was 15 minutes. They were running two trains, filling all rows, and the ops were dispatching trains very quickly, but it was still strange to see such a short line! (Troy was only filling every other row, but also running 2 trains) I really love this themed area! Fenix really takes the center piece and fits in beautifully to the landscape. This was my first B&M Wing coaster. I wasn't quite sure what to expect, I'm not the biggest fan of Dive Machines and a lot of B&M's shorter layouts on new coaster concepts. Fenix delivered though! The drop into the (dive loop?) was pretty awesome on the back left side and I thought it was decently forceful. The airtime hill had solid sustained floater airtime and overall I thought the layout was fun. Still on the short side, but way better than a dive machine . Plus the ride just looks gorgeous! I didn't expect much from Dwervelwind, but it was actually a lot of fun and a lot more forceful than I was expecting! If the line hadn't quickly gotten long I would have grabbed a few more rides. I think it also looks pretty awesome (a theme here!) The difference between Toverland and Walibi was stark. This park is beautiful. It was pretty hot and sunny, a water ride seemed just what was needed. To nitpick, I do wish the track for flume was submerged in the water or rock formation (kinda like the flume at Phantasialand). It just sticks out in an otherwise nicely themed area. Unfortunately the two indoor areas were closed due to covid (besides the flume). I'll have to come back to drink in the biergarten! Back over to Troy for some more rides. I managed to snag a front row and back row ride. I'm not sure if it just needed to warm up, but my impression completely changed after a few more ride. The back was riding very fast, great pacing, pretty intense, and I was getting a good bit of floater airtime. The front was also pretty good, but the back was a bit better. This is definitely my favorite layout of all the GCI's I've ridden (not a whole lot of the newer ones though, besides Wodan). You definitely get that of out-of-control rumble I so like in a good wooden coaster! There were quite some good options for food (I forgot to take photos, but I got a delicious crepe near Fenix and Chili fries. Next time I'll have to spend sometime relaxing at the restaurant across from Fenix. The food looked pretty good and what a great area to relax! (the line to get in was a bit too long for me) I stopped at Van Moll Cafe in Eindhoven on the way home (my first time here). Very solid tap list and bottle list. I went with this Caol Ila Barrel Aged Imperial Stout (I'm a big peat fan) and it was sublime! I definitely would recommend a stop here if you are passing by Eindhoven. It was a fun weekend exploring the Netherlands and getting some sun! Untamed blew me away, Goliath was fun, and Toverland was overall an excellent park. I look forward to going back again! Maybe I can get up to Efteling this weekend
  10. I was really looking forward to the raft crossing! I'll just have to come back once covid is in a better state. The park was pretty packed and they were skipping every other row for the rides, so I wasn't to surprised by the long lines. While I was initially frustrated by the virtual queue, it did seem to work more smoothly for others as the day progressed. They did just reopen so they need some time to work out the kinks. I will say, virtual queue could be really useful for busy rides at other parks. I like the idea of sitting in a cafe or biergarten while waiting in 'line'. The staff did do a great job getting the rides back up quickly and were pretty quick with loading and not stacking trains. The entire Untamed section is really nice. Having the out-n-back layout surrounding the queue is awesome and all the vegetation is pretty.
  11. I had been itching to travel outside Belgium and Netherlands has recently reopened outdoor venues including theme parks, so with a good forecast for the weekend (finally, it's been a brutal May here!) I grabbed a car and headed up to NL. I arrived to Harderwijk quite early, so I took some time to wander around town. It was clear and sunny on the drive up until I got to Harderwijk. Cute little bakery I stopped at to get some breakfast. I've heard of the traditional wooden clogs that are famous in NL... but I never thought anyone actually wore them until I saw someone walk out of the bakery clanking along the cobblestone! Adorable! I pulled into Walibi just after 9. I've seen this photo a million times of the years and seeing this beauty in person got me very excited! I've always found Intamin to be visually appealing compared to other coasters. Oh yeah, I feel like I'm at a Six Flags I was in Belgium two years ago, but Untamed didn't open until I had to fly back. I've been looking forward to finally getting to ride this every since (and those Teddy bear videos!). I headed here as soon as the park opened. Walibi is using a virtual queue for most of the rides due to covid, you get emailed a link that you can then access on the day of your reservation. The wifi in the park actually worked pretty well, albeit there were a few areas where the signal was weak/dropping out. A line had already formed outside the queue before 10:00 and then we waited for the ride to become available on the virtual queue app. For what ever reason, it didn't go online until about 7 or 8 past 10am and then it was basically a mad dash of people clicking reserve. Funny enough, everyone standing in line had 7+ minutes until they could enter (A countdown clock pops up and once ready it goes to a QR code to be scanned at the queue entrance). Needless to say, everyone was confused as to how to use the app, when they could enter, etc. So basically we all just stood there for 15 minutes while the park was open... very efficient. My first ride was mid-train and I was impressed, but not completely blown away. But being a cool morning and middle train, I wasn't surprised. After I got off, the virtual queue was already showing about 35 minutes to be able to enter again, so I selected Lost Gravity instead, with a 20 min wait time. This is when things got very frustrating . While walking over to the ride, my queue time went up a few minutes, but then dropped down to ~16 minutes and then jumped all the way down to 7 and then 3 minutes as I was just at the queue entrance. Great I thought! Except all of a sudden my queue time started jumping up, at one point reaching 50+ minutes. After about 10 minutes of seeing it bounce between 30 and 50 minutes, I just started walking over to Goliath. About half way there, my queue time dropped back to ~3 minutes. I'm thinking 'WTF is going on' as I turned around and rushed back to Lost Gravity (of course at the time I didn't realize you had 30 minutes after the QR code comes up to use it). As for Lost Gravity, I enjoyed it, but it didn't really stand out at all. I only ended up going back for one more ride later on. I did really like the theming though. After Lost Gravity, it was time to finally go tick another Intamin I've been dreaming of riding for years. The queue length was sitting around an hour on the app, but with not much else to do, I just took a seat outside the station as my virtual queue ticked down. One of the big downsides of the park is the lack of good food/beverage or well themed areas to really sit and just relax. My wait time got down to about 16 minutes before the dreaded announcement... Goliath is experiencing technical difficulties . I waited for about 20 minutes before deciding to cut my losses and head back toward Untamed. The park was massively busy, the queue for Untamed was beyond an hour already (~11:30am). Xpress: platform 13 wasn't operating and Conder had just gone down (what a loss ). I really like what they did with incorporating parts of Robin Hood in the theming! My second ride on Untamed was already an improvement over the first (I forget where I was sitting). After the ride, I noticed that the queue times for Untamed and Lost Gravity were over 2 hours and even Speed of Sound and Condor (which was now open) were over an hour. When I saw that Xpress: Platform 13 had opened (and with a line already 1 hour +), I decided to bite the bullet and buy the unlimited rides pass. I think this is the first time I ever purchased a fast lane kind of thing, but it was definitely a good choice. I had heard that Walibi did a good job with the queue/station theming for this ride, but it really impressed me nonetheless. It definitely felt a little out of place compared to the rest of the park! My first pass I didn't see any interaction with the fountain, but my second time through was quite entertaining Next I headed to Speed of Sound, which, while it's just a typical boring boomerang, it did have probably the best theming of any I've yet ridden. I was a bit annoyed at still having to wait in the actual queue far longer than I ever want to wait for a boomerang I headed back to Untamed, but as soon as I got in the queue, I saw that Goliath had reopened! I was starting to go through my love-hate relationship with Intamin, fearing I'd miss the chance to ride Goliath, so taking no chances, I left the Untamed line and rushed over to Goliath. Since it had just reopened, I managed to get 3 quick rides in before the queue built back up. The first was dead center of the train, which was quite disappointing, but I snagged the last row, right seat on the 3rd ride and it delivered. Classic intamin ejector air and all three bunny hops on the finish were strong. I will say, this was probably the roughest Intamin I've ever ridden. Tons of rattle and squeaking. Since the line was building back up, I decided to head back to Untamed and take full advantage of the unlimited skip the queue. The pull-your-self-across platform was closed due to covid. I got 3 or 4 rides in, including a front and back row ride. The front was fun and pretty forceful, but that back row ride, that cemented this as my new #1 roller coaster in the world, without doubt. I'm not sure I will call it my favorite per say, as I love Expedition GeForce and think it's just about perfect for what it is.... but Untamed does more. The unrelenting pacing, crazy fast transitions, ejector air everywhere, it's pretty close to a masterpiece. The only criticism could be it's small stature and lack of strong positive g's, which is where I might still slightly prefer GeForce as my favorite. It might seem weird, but I think I have different #1 and favorite . I then headed back to Goliath for a few more laps. I snagged a front row ride (great forceful helicies from the front) and another back row ride (I wonder if the trains are running quite different, this lap feel nearly as forceful as the previous in the back row). I headed back to Untamed to finish out the night. I got another 2 or 3 laps in before I was standing next in line for the front row just past 6:00pm (with another lap queued up the app). And then the dreaded breakdown. This was now the 3rd time Untamed broke down while I was in queue and unfortunately it was a night ender (they had to evac both the train in the station and brake run). I give the park a lot props, they spent up until about 6:35 trying to get it running before calling it quits. Walibi had a rough day overall with breakdowns. While in line for Untamed at the end of the day, I had noticed that Goliath also had broken down. As I was leaving the park, I saw the train on Goliath stuck at the top of the lift hill (and it looked like some people were still being evacuated down the lift)! Not sure I've seen the top to coasters at a park both need to get evacuated to close out the day! I overall enjoyed my time at the park. I was annoyed with the virtual queue, but I understand them trying to adapt with covid and the staff was very nice in general. Goliath is classic Intamin, even though it might not be aging very gracefully and of course Untamed is absolutely insane. I can't say there is much else that would draw me to the park though. I'll update with Toverland tomorrow or in the coming days. Toverland was pretty fun! Beautiful park!
  12. I think this is a pretty solid list overall, but nit-picking, Goliath ahead of SROS @ SFNE makes no sense. I snagged a bunch of rides late 2019 (it was my 'home park', so I've ridden it lots of the years since it opened) and just recently got a bunch of rides on Goliath @ Walibi Holland. While I really enjoyed the back and to some extent the front (the middle is very meh), it was not SROS. I like the layout, but SROS just had it best across the board. Intensity, airtime moments, length, height, speed, and smoothness. Both trains of Goliath are running pretty much the roughest of any Intamin I've ever ridden. All that said... I really like Goliath. It just isn't better than SROS
  13. Where did you ride on Goliath? I found it's a backseat ride. The middle did nothing for me. The back was classic intamin ejector air. I will say the front was the most forceful on the two helicies. I wasn't a big fan of Lost Gravity, but I'm not sure I'd call it overrated. If people are putting it in the 30-50 range of steel coasters... that is probably where it belongs. I'm sure some individuals love it, but the concensis is on point. Untamed, I kind of wanted to find it overrated... but my Intamin fanboy self couldn't deny that Untamed was the best overall roller coaster I've ever ridden, and multiple rides made that pretty clear. I'll habe a trip report up soon, it was an interesting day. Toverland tomorrow!
  14. Untamed this evening. It hurts to admit this, but it is absolutely the best coaster I've ever riden. I still might prefer Expedition Gforce, maybe, but Untamed I think is clearly the better overall coaster. Kondaa is really good, really really good, but overall... Untamed is just wild. The pacing is absolutely perfect. Honestly it really feels to get faster, more intense, and just more twisted crazy as the ride goes on. Only critique is it isn't my favorite first drop and it does lack strong +g forces.
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