TRIP REPORT PKI 05/20, SFKK/HW 05/21, Beech Bend 05/22, Dollywood 05/23, Jeepers 05/24
Hello all. 8)
05/19 was Media Day for the new Italian Job Stunt Track at PKI. Pictures are at the very bottom.
The next day after the media day I planned on hitting PKI for the first time since 2002.
I got to the park about 9:00 and after getting my Carowinds pass to go in (I have a Carowinds Season Pass) I headed to the ACE square for my first walk-back.
Because of the rain on media day I had only gotten one ride on Italiana Job, so I decided to do my walk back to Italian Job.
Surprise surprise our Walk-back talk was handled by none other than Jeff (the head of PR at PKI). He told us of some of the new things at the park, etc. Then he announced that they had just added a third train to Italian Job that morning and it would be testing until about Noon.
But he did give us free walk-on passes to ride it later in the day. Kudos to PKI!!
So with that out of the way and and no IJ to ride, we were all walked back to the Beast for a “walk-on” they basically walk you all the way back to the line and you are first in line when 10:00 comes.
Beast – 10:00 am
I got on the first train out, I think I was in the 2nd row.
Wow this thing is not nearly as much in the morning when it hasn’t “woken up” yet. It’s much more bumpy and such.
Also, my fears were realized on the first drop and second drop as they brake you both places which kills ALL air time on those two hills. I had heard about this for about a year or two now and I have to agree that it’s not the best thing to do to the ride.
I’d rather they brake you over by the covered bridge section. But old Beast seems a bit faster than the last time I remember it so maye it’s just too fast to be safe there now. Don’t know.
First ride of the day and walk back 10/10. Overall morning ride on Beast 6/10.
I will not go into detail on everything else in the park, but give you scores and highlights.
Italian Job – 8/10
Over the course of the 2 days I got 4 rides.
2 rides with headlights/talelights off . 2 rides with them on.
Both are totally different expereinces in the tunnel. I prefer the lights off myself.
This is not a high thrill coaster, it’s a highly themed coaster that families could enjoy without being scared to death like on something like The Mummy. That doesn’t mean it’s boring, it’s just not intense.
Tomb Raider – 7/10
This was my 2nd ride, is it me or has this thing always had such a short run time? It seemed extrememly short this time for some reason. It’s a fun ride though. Though they need to turn the lights back OFF in the room. It takes away all the suspense.
Scooby Doo’s Ghoster Coaster – 5/10
The brakes on this thing are a killer for guys (and you know which area of the body I’m talking about). It’s a fun little coaster, but not much more than a coaster credit.
Beastie – 6/10
Pretty much a clone of the other two coasters like it (Fairly Odd Coaster at PC and Scooby Doo at PKD). However the paint job looks awful and the grounds in between the supports made it look like a Six Flags (trashy).
The Racer – 7/10
This one also looked like it needed some maintenance and a paint job.
Adventure Express – 7/10 (one of my favorite mine train’s)
Seems like they might have added some new tunnels or something to this one. The seats though are very hard and not very comfortable.
Delirium – 10/10
Oh my!!! I was expecting great things from this ride and it delivered!!! Now if only PC would get one of these!!!!
Beast at Night – 10/10
Amazing ride at night. Much smoother and I rode out of the station at 10:58 or so, so it was my last ride of the night.
I rode all the coasters in the park except for the little Taxi Jam or whatever it's called. They won't let adults on without a child.
Overall rating for PKI – 9/10
Holiday World 05/21
My plan was to do Holiday World in the morning and SFKK in the afternoon.
Holiday World was very clean and the staff overall was pretty friendly.
The Raven – 6/10
All this hype, all this hype… for what?
I’m sorry, but people have hyped this thing up beyond what it really is.
For those that haven’t ridden it, it’s extremely short. Nothing like I was expecting. And if this had been the only coaster at the park I would have been majorly upset and dissapointed.
For the ride that’s actually there, yes it’s amazing. But it’s over before you can even think about what’s happening.
Next door lies another story…
The Legend – 10/10
Why is it that no one talks about Legend, but talks about Raven???
This thing is truly amazing and has knocked Georgia Cyclone out of my #3 spot on my woody list. (My #1 is still Beast and #2 is Thunderhead). Call my nostalgic, but I still love The Beast.
Great air time on this thing and one was even ejector air time. I loved the School House look of the station (after all it is themed after the Legend of Sleepy Hollow).
The last tunnel/helix is the weirdest one I’ve ever seen on a wooden coaster. It’s like banked left instead of right or something like that and it feels like this monster is going to throw you out of your seat any second!!!
This thing is truly amazing and is the best CCI I’ve been on.
Howler – No rating
My legs were too long for this kiddie coaster for some reason and I couldn’t ride.
Flyers – 5/10
After getting addicted to Carowinds (formerly PKI’s) flyers I looked forward to checking out Holiday World’s version.
This model appears to be smaller than the PC version and doesn’t run nearly as fast.
As a result, snapping seems to be impossible to do on this ride.
S & S Tower (Liberty Launch) – 6/10
S & S really has made me quite a fan of their rides. Although very short, this is quite a good copy of Power Tower (althought I still haven’t been on PT yet).
Overall this is a family park and a nice one at that. Although it’s funny seeing a park built out in the middle of a field. LoL
The ammenities (free parking, free soft drinks, ACE discount) make this park worth checking out.
Legend alone was worth the 1 hour drive from Louisville.
Overall Holiday World rating 8/10.
I didn’t have very high expectations for this park, but since I have a Six Flags pass I was going to go anyway. LoL
This has to be the weirdest and one of the ugliest parks I’ve ever been to. The whole park the paint has faded out on almost all the buildings and rides.
There are a few exceptions, but I’ve never been in a park except for one section of SFA where it looked like the park had been abandoned for 10 years and then they just opened it up that day for us to go in to see. Wow.
Wild Mouse – 5/10
This was near the front so I hit it first. After waiting in a very hot que and having people jump in front of me on more than one occasion, I was ready to ride.
This mouse looked really cool from the ground. How wrong I was.
This gets my award as the most painful mouse I’ve ever been on. The restraints eat into your skin and just pinch you to death.
On to better things??? We hope…
Greezed Lightning - 10/10
I had ridden this many times when it was at SFOG and couldn’t wait to ride it again.
I like the paint job, very cool colors.
For some reason it seems like it takes forever to get up to speed on this thing now. Maybe I just forgot what it was like at SFOG, but it seemed that way.
Still a great Schwarzkopf though. I love the back and the back spike.
Chang – 8/10 (Takes #2 on my stand-up list)
Chang seems to be somewhat of a mirror image of Mantis, althought shorter and thankfully smoother.
This seemed to be the only themed coaster in the park and was well done IMO. I liked all the Asian looking plants.
Unfortuantley this ride is starting to loosen up and was a bit bumpier than I like.
Georgia Scorcher has nothing to worry about it looks like it was stay my #1 stand-up.
T 2 – 2/10 (Terror to the 2nd power, no kidding!)
This is my 2nd SLC, and was by far one of the most painful coasters I’ve ever ridden.
It actually hurt my back during one of the inversions.
I will probably never ride this again.
It also has a very confusing que lines to find. It’s behind the coaster and you there’s not sign telling you where to go to get on the ride!!!
Thunder Run – No rating
I couldn’t even get to ride this thing because the left hand seat belt was so far down in the seat that I couldn’t even buckle the belt! How rediculous!
But it looks to be a “clone” of the two Hurler coasters.
However, I had the best customer service moment ever at a Six Flags at Thunder Run.
There was a manager there and he saw what happened and he walked me to Twisted Twins and walked me up the exit and let me sit wherever I wanted to. He was a nice guy and we talked about ACE and other things on the way over to Twisted Twins.
Twisted Twins - 7/10
I think it was Lola that was running (pink train/white trim).
Stella was not running, bummer.
The only real complaint about this wooden/dueling coaster is that the gersluaer (sp?) trains beat up your legs unless you hold your legs together. (Much like Son of Beast’s restrains beat your legs up).
I thought it was a fun woody and if both sides had been working, it might have even made it on my top 10 woody list.
Nice interesting layout.
Overall rating for SFKK 6/10
Beech Bend - Bowling Green, KY
This is a tiny little park that is also part of a drag strip, etc. They are also building a GCI woody for next year!!!
This park has a lot of traveling models of rides and most of the flats you would see at your local county fair.
That doesn’t mean they aren’t good, but they are pretty common.
Looping Star – 6/10
This appears to be a traveling model by Pinfari.
A fun little coaster, the loop is pretty intense. It’s also funny that they still have the advertising signs on the coaster that look to be in Italian or some other language.
Dragon – 6/10
For a kiddie coaster, this is actually pretty fun. Although if you’re an adult you feel like you’re going to fall out on the lift hill that tilts to the left a lot.
Drop Tower 7/10
I can’t recall who built this, but it’s a very different little drop tower.
Most drop towers take you to the top, then you sit for a second or two and wait for the lock to unlock and let you drop.
This thing let’s you go as soon as you reach the top. It surprised me how quickly it let’s go! It’s fun and I rode it twice.
It’s actually sitting right beside the construction site of the new GCI Woody that’s being built.
Footers are already present. It looks like the footprint for this coaster is going to be very small.
I rode various other flat rides, but most are pretty standard rides.
Haunted House – 7/10
Another park that has an old dark ride/haunted house. (Lake Winnie’s is probably better).
Although this one is very long and VERY dark. It’s mostly you riding around in the dark and then seeing different scenes every now and then. Nothing really jumps out at you that I recall. I rode it twice I believe.
Overall a fun little park in the middle of nowhere, lol. If you have kids older than about 6 or so they will love this park. http://www.beechbend.com/
Wild Mouse – Still under construction and I have pictures at the bottom of the page of it under construction!!!
Overall rating for Beech Bend 7/10
Dollywood – 10/10
I didn’t stay very long as I had been twice before this season. The park is still one of the nicest in the South and the Dizzy Disk was working again!!!
Overall I had a blast on my week-long coaster excursion. I had nice weather every day except for Media Day at PKI.
I went to the new Jeepers in Gastonia NC on the way home.
It's on the 3rd level of a mall there. It's not as good as the one at Concord Mills IMO. It doesn't have a scrambler like CM, and they wouldn't let anyone on Python Pit unless they were 5 foot 3 or below.
It kind of pissed me off since they've got the same model up at Concord Mills and they let me ride that one.
But this is Gastonia I'm talking about after all. lol (Charlotte humor)
Overall rating 4/10
This Jeepers is basically just an arcade with Python Pit and maybe 2 kiddie rides.
I drove over 1600 miles in those 7 days.
Here are my pics I took