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Zand

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Everything posted by Zand

  1. Posted pics to the FB group, but figured I'd add my reviews to the park here. Spent about an hour and a half in the park on Friday. Obviously $62 is very steep for just an hour and a half, but it's right in line with my Jersey Shore pier experiences over the summer. Good news (for me, not the park) is that it was pretty dead and I had free reign the entire time I was there. Hit each coaster at least once as well as a couple flats. If I had time I would've loved to hit more of the flats and reride the coasters some more as they have a very good lineup. Here are my thoughts on what I rode... Sandy's Blasting Bronco was my first ride of the day...rode in back and it was a blast. Totally smooth, fun floating sensation through the immelmans and some good forces. Very strong launch, especially the unusual backwards launch. Rode it again later in the front. Definitely a different ride up there...thought the floating sensations were more prevalent in the back but more positive G's up front. Shredder was a solo ride for me and therefore I didn't spin a whole lot. Much longer layout than I expected and while there's nothing crazy in the layout, the ride is great for families and could get pretty intense if you can get a good spinning ride. Was surprised by its height as well. While I've definitely ridden spinners that give a wilder ride, the length of this one puts it right up there as well. Shellraiser was a love/hate ride for me. The layout is insane with a good powerful launch, that awesome drop with the holding break on top with the view of New York, and some great inversions. However, some spots got so rough that it was bordering on being brutal, especially at the bottom of the big drop. If they can do some work on those spots, this ride would be top 20 material for me, but I just can't put it there the way it is. BTW, the rest of the park patrons were avoiding this thing like the plague. I thought it was closed because I never saw it run the first 20 minutes I was there, but just turns out no one really wanted to ride it. Not sure if it's the buried entrance, the intimidating look, or if the word is out that you get pretty beat up, but it was a ghost town in that station the whole time I was there. Slime Streak had some pretty terrible trains (and I'm only 5'8") but the ride itself was actually really fun. You get some minor floater over the hills and this thing cruises along pretty good through the course. Also surprisingly tall with a big drop for what is intended to be the small family coaster. Timmy's Halfpipe Havoc was my first Halfpipe coaster because I've never wasted my time with Elitch Gardens. I was totally alone on the ride and it was really damn fun. Sandy's was my favorite coaster in the park, but this was my #2. Got some good spinning going and the airtime was a fun sensation. It feels like a glorified swinging ship but just a lot of fun. Unfortunately I was too short on time to hit many flats, but had to hit a couple of the unique ones. The S&S tower was a must ride and for some reason it was almost freaky the way it went up in its own shaft, which really added a sensation of height to the ride. Not sure what the actual height is, but between being way above the mall roof, having a long view of the NJ Turnpike, and being face to face with the NYC skyscrapers, it felt a million feet tall. It was running in combo mode and while the launch was pretty good, the drop sucked. But the uniqueness more than made up for the lame drop. Also, not sure what the name of it was but had to get a ride on that modern looper style ride. Instead of having to work a floor pedal to get the car flipping, you simply had to use the joystick to flip either forwards or backwards. Very easy to ride in "flying mode", stay upside down, or just flip the thing manically forwards or backwards. I don't get nauseous easily but I held the stick forward for like 7 or 8 consecutive flips and was almost ready to hurl. This stupid thing is insane lol. Wanted to get on the Air Race, Frisbee, and maybe some other stuff but had to hit the road. If you want to check this place out, right now is a great time to do so as crowds are very light and you'll get to just do whatever you want as much as you want. Just remember you can't re-enter once you leave so plan accordingly. Plenty of food and restrooms inside the park. Didn't encounter any unreasonable security (I was alone while my wife shopped) which was a positive. The free lockers were very easy to use with the same wristband you get when you enter the park. For me, skiing is my #1 passion (parks are #2) but I didn't end up checking out Big Snow as the real season is only a few weeks away. But I did see quite a few people heading in with equipment. Maybe next year in July I'll have to stop by if I'm in Jersey. For now, I'm still trying to get over the shock that this place is actually open and that I can do my two favorite things (neither of which ever involve a roof) under one roof.
  2. SFA had all those marijuana and horseplay signs too. With the weather it was pretty dead last night, but they still had Saturday level security which was pretty funny. There was a security guard or cop for probably every 12 park patrons. Never seen anything like it.
  3. Two trains on the woodies (which didn't need them) and one on the rest (Jokers Jynx had a 10 minute line, the rest were walk ons). No one grouping on any ride that I saw. I guess thats good for Firebird, but I don't plan on ever riding it again. I'd rather marathon the SLC.
  4. Was down in MD visiting friends this weekend and after making a quick stop at American Dream on Friday on the ride down (threw a couple pictures on FB), I started the ride back with a stop at American Nightmare...err...SFA! After a gorgeous day yesterday, today was dreadful with temps in the 40s and showers. I expected to see SFA post that they would be closed for the day but around 6 I decided to head over, parked nice and close, and headed in with a heavy mist falling. This park gets sh*t on a lot, and for good reason, but on a gloomy night with a small crowd and walk on rides everywhere, it was a good time. Grabbed dinner on the meal pass on the way in and then made my way back to Mind Eraser...LOL just kidding, screw that. Started with a nice front row ride on Roar. This is like the Hershey Wildcat to me...everyone on here bitches about how rough it is but it's a fun and decently forceful woodie and not that rough at all. Sure, an RMC makeover would be awesome for the park, but Roar is a nice ride as it is. Firebird is one of the two new to me coasters in the park and was my next stop, but was down temporarily so I made my way to the drop tower. Not a very tall one, but a nice forceful drop. Can't just walk by a walk on drop tower and not hop on. Next up was the biggest gem at SFA, Wild One. How Six Flags manages to keep a 103 year old wooden coaster so smooth is one of the world's great mysteries. Lots of good airtime all over the layout and great laterals in the helix of death, all while maintaining a mainly perfectly smooth ride. The other new to me credit, Rajun Cajun, was closed so kept heading back to Jokers Jynx. Another great ride, very whippy but smooth in the transitions. Headed back further (lol this park has the worst layout in the world) to Superman which was an absolute blast. For some reason they were loading every row which felt weird after not seeing that at all this year. Rode in back and it was absolutely flying through the darkness behind the park. Not the most inspiring layout ever made but still good Intamin fun and cool to see the old trains (coming from an SFNE homer). The world's most ridiculously placed coaster was next, Batwing! The good thing is the dark foggy night masked the fact that the ride is plopped way out in a field. I want to love the ride, it has a much better layout than the Supermans and is very intense. But good lord those trains suck. They shuffle like typical Vekoma trains and the vests don't really hold you in so the buckle point pretty much does the Heimlich on you through the flying sections. A Batwing layout with B&M trains would be an awesome ride. Started making my way back to the front, intending on getting my Firebird credit and heading out. Couldn't resist a 2nd ride on Wild One, but then made my way over. After making my way through the queue that is about 4000 feet too long, I walked right up to the front. Backstory: I don't like Rougarou. I'm one of the rare people that actually preferred Mantis. But most people seem to approve of that makeover. On the other hand, I've seen people who like Rougarou not like this one at all. Anyway, yeah...this thing is a pile of sh*t. Just bashes your head around from beginning to end. I came off with the worst headache a roller coaster I've ever gotten from a coaster. Hopefully the asteroid coming for the earth around Election Day lands directly on this thing. If I didn't have a horrible headache I would've ridden Mind Eraser to remind myself what a coaster that only bashes your head into nice soft padded restraints feels like. But with a long ride home I decided I was hurting enough and called it a night. A sour ending, but overall I actually had a really great time at SFA. I know people drive right past this place all the time to head for much better places, but honestly it's a great place to break up a ride to BGW for a couple hours and really has a few decent coasters in its lineup.
  5. Glad to hear things have been better this month than they sounded pre-covid. Hoping to stop in for a couple hours next Friday, only have time for the dry park but looks like a great time to go with the restricted crowd size.
  6. Guessing you are right but I still haven’t seen a full closed for year announcement yet like Darien Lake & Great Escape put out so maybe an outside HITP chance but not looking good. Starting today, we're allowed to pour our own soft drinks and coffee again in fast food restaurants and convenience stores. SFNE might be allowed to open by 2025 EDIT: Baker just announced that starting next Monday, "indoor and outdoor performance venues" can have 250 people in attendance. Maybe SFNE can worm their way into taking advantage of that for HITP somehow?
  7. Did security follow you in? They're apparently so good at making people uncomfortable that I thought maybe they really went the extra mile
  8. I think some of the food stands are hit or miss this year. I was there a couple weeks ago on a Thursday and the "good pierogi stabd" at the Oasis was open. But I see a lot of reports saying it's been closed a lot. The Round Stand was also open when I was there but stuff like Satellite was closed (which was open other days). Luck of the draw I guess.
  9. Fixed it for you. If they run it without trims in December I would drive down just to ride it.
  10. Haha actually I'd never seen a POV before I first rode it and I didn't know anything about the layout other than what you can see in pictures. I still remember halfway through my first ride thinking how it was the dumbest thing I'd ever ridden, especially considering the hype. After a couple more rides and a magical front seat night ride it grew on me a bit. But yeah...when I first saw 2/3rds of the layout was just long straightaways through the woods it was a WTF moment for sure lol.
  11. Aint that the truth! Although I have noticed now that I "fill out" the seats in PTC trains a little more these days, they can't throw me around as much.
  12. I really need to get back to KI one of these years. The last time I went was one of those dystopian years after Son of Beast had the loop removed and the best coaster in the park was probably Flight of Fear or Firehawk. I spent more time in the waterpark than the dry park. Now the park looks to have a lineup that might be top 3 in the nation. Even more dystopian was during that same trip, I visited SFKK 2 weeks after the Superman Tower accident. I've never seen less people in a park on a sunny summer day.
  13. Everything is running except Miner Mike, the park will be closed from 9/14-9/17 and 9/28-10/1 I'll be there 9/14 - 9/17. Balls. Guess I still have the Stratosphere and the Togo masterpiece at least.
  14. I'm sure a staffing issue has to do with most of the closures and you can't fault them for that this year.. But the place has had an "upper management not caring" issue for far too long and it becomes especially apparent in years like this. Having 4 cars available on Ghost Hunt, 4 logs available on the flume (I might be off by one or two but I'm not even really exaggerating), and a piecemealed train on your star coaster goes beyond staffing issues. As for Boulder Dash I wouldve loved to have sat in the front of the second car but an exit pass got the front and then they kept two rows between each party empty so got stuck in the back row. Like I said I didn't even find the roughness that bad, but I used to lap the thing in the back row for hours. Can't imagine I would've gone more than 2 or 3 times yesterday if there was no line. But the biggest thing is how much slower it runs than it did 10-15 years ago. You can see it in POVs now compared to then. Twister has gotten rougher but has kept its speed, Boulder Dash hasn't. It's too bad because I really want the park to be better and to go there more, but it's at the point where Quassy is literally the better park. It feels like a tiny Six Flags...slightly nicer looking but poorer operations. At least it isn't Elitch Gardens I guess lol.
  15. Is everything else open in there? Will be in Vegas next week and,its always worth popping in for a couple El Loco rides. Is Chaos still running? Lol
  16. Went to the park for a couple hours today. It wasn't exactly crowded, but the mix of social distancing requirements and atrocious operations plus about half the rides being closed led to an early exit. First order of business when I got in was Phobia, which was still new to me as I hadn't been to the Lake in at least 8 years. The line was one switchback deep in the larger maze, but still about 45 minutes or so. The ops were getting trains through decently fast here at least, but with only two cars most trains only had 6-8 riders. As for the ride, lots of fun as expected but I think,I prefer the three car model. You get more air over the top on those. But this is still a great ride for Lake Compounce and dominates the landscape. While in line for Phobia I couldn't help but notice the lack of ride noises around me. I would hear Boulder Dash go by once every 10 minutes, the Screaming Swing every 10 minutes, and Wildcat go up the lift even less frequently. This was after passing a taken-apart Wave Swinger, a closed Disko, a closed Pirate Ship, and a closed Skycoaster on the way in. Also noticed a 30-40 deep line for Potato Patch and almost every other food booth closed. So I knew it wasn't going to be a very productive afternoon. After passing the Screaming Swing line and watching them run only one side with maybe 8 people on it, I knew that line wouldn't move. The Log Flume indoor queue section was over half full but we all know how slow that line moves. Ghost Hunt had a full queue and has as many cars as the log flume has logs so that was a no go. Finally settled on Boulder Dash which had a line out the front entrance and onto the pathway. Obviously people were spread out but I knew it would still be long based on how many times I had heard it go by earlier. Once I finally got up to the station I noticed they were keeping two rows empty between groups and further worsening capacity by pulling off load times in the neighborhood of 5 minutes. They had to clean the train every 30 minutes and between the dispatch times and the ride time, they were getting 3 trains out per cleaning cycle. After over an hour I was finally on in the 4th row and finally got to see what the bitching was all about. I always know to take the bitching with a grain of salt because it's never as bad as everyone makes it out to be. And well... I'm in a pickle about how to feel about my ride. It's not that rough. Its on the same scale that Twister at Knoebels and Wildcat at Hershey are on as far as roughness goes. But it is definitely not what it used to be. One good retracking would probably do wonders for it. But what was once truly the best wooden coaster in existence (pre 2006) is no longer even the best wooden coaster off I-84 in Connecticut. It still has the tremendous layout, but it loses a lot of speed now due to the shuffling and the airtime is totally gone. And it used to be the best night time ride ever conceived (no Beast, not you) but without seeing what's coming it would probably really suck at night now. So it's still more than rideable, but it's no longer great and they need to spend some time giving it TLC because it deserves it. Continued down the hill and walked by the Wildcat line which was out the entrance and halfway to the Wipeout ride. While dealing with some roughness is worth it on Boulder Dash, dealing with even more roughness for a terrible roller coaster (especially with a long line) wasn't in the cards. Downtime and Wipeout were both being cleaned with half full queues when I went by. Noticed more closed food booths on that side of the park (only Pinks was open and the line was way out around the corner). The path down to the former Skyride and the,serene side of the lake was closed as well. As we walked back around the corner towards the front of the park we kinda just walked right out knowing it was just getting busier and things weren't going to get better. Maybe I got spoiled by the great operations at Hershey and Knoebels, even during a pandemic. But today was...not good. Lake Compounce has always had below average operations, but making them worse when things are running at half capacity is not a good combination. Heading to Vegas next week, mainly for some poker but can't turn down a couple quick stops at Adventuredome and Stratosphere. Might even bash my brains in on that wonderful Togo creation on top of New York New York.
  17. I think the waterpark was the difference for us. Couldn't have paid me to go in there. But yes that was the one negative is that social distancing was almost non-existent. Like I've said, the signs on the ground marking 6 feet of distance may as well have said "15 guests between each sign" because that's what was happening and no one enforced it at all.
  18. You were at Hershey the same day I was (I also went back the next day) and I thought it went really well. Candymonium got the Epcot effect early and late but had no line midday. Never waited more than 15-20 minutes for anything else (didn't bother with Laff Trakk or Cupfusion though) and never had to deal with fastpasses or return lines or any of that craziness. I mean why wait 30 minutes for a return pass to wait 90 minutes for Steel Vengeance when you can wait 5 minutes for Skyrush? Glad you got to CP on some good days though. If I thought I had a chance at a good day I'd go but based on this TR plus the many TRs recently in the CP thread it sounds like absolute hell. Gonna try GADV in October and that will probably totally suck too, but its a much shorter trip and I go there enough anyway.
  19. To be honest, Cedar Point kinda sounded miserable and I'm glad I skipped that trip this year. I understand Steel Vengeance and Maverick having long lines but just can't imagine being there with rides like the Mine Train and Magnum having a 1+ hr line. Based on the TRs I've read from a lot of places, I feel like I hit a home run with hitting Hershey and Knoebels.
  20. Going to the park one of the days of Labor Day weekend before they close. Haven't been in probably 8 years. Sad to hear how much Boulder Dash has fallen from grace but at least Phobia will be new to me. Enjoyed Tempesto and hear this one is better. Too bad the Wave Swinger is closed for the season, always enjoyed the Batman The Ride G's you pull on that thing. At least the Sky Ride isn't closed for the season...oh wait. Anyway should I expect insane lines for Boulder Dash with one train ops or are they at least trying to move things along these days? Does Wildcat still absolutely suck? Should I bring my own log for the flume?
  21. Like I just said that wasn't our experience at all last weekend. They took the ride's maximum capacity from 36 with 3 trains to 12 with 2 trains. It's realistically doing like 400 riders per hour and it's capacity is the same or worse than Maverick this year with covid. Most of the coasters had lines between 30-60 minutes even though they all should have been walk-ons or near walk-ons. Also, Demon Drop had a 30 minute wait at the end of the night which was hilarious, but they're also only running 3 cars on it. Dominator down was a walk-on and waiting for riders while that was happening which made me happy though. Oh, and Thunderhawk's new capacity is 8 riders per train... maximum, but they can't group single riders so probably like 6 or 7 all so they can create needlessly long lines of people not social distancing or wearing masks where the park makes no attempt to enforce it in the name of social distancing. That's insane...i feel like Knoebels was doing this right (surprise surprise...) by letting parties sit together on Phoenix and Twister and putting a row between each party. All that's accomplished when you go to extremes like Dorney is apparently doing is you're making the lines longer. And those signs on the ground every six feet in the queue lines might as well say "stand so close to the person in front of you that you literally breathe your Covid directly into that persons mouth" because that's what most people in those lines like to do. Being 12 feet away from the next person on the Steel Force train for 2 minutes means nothing when you just spent 45 minutes with people standing 18 inches away from you. Reading this makes me glad I drove right by Dorney without stopping on my way to Hershey and Knoebels.
  22. Not being able to stuff 5 strangers into every log must be killing Lake Compounce this year
  23. Finally got a full day in yesterday for the first time in four years. I spent two hours there two years ago, but it happened to be mere days after the 2018 flood (which is marked on the signs) on a day where the park flooded again but was still open because Knoebels. The park was definitely on the busy side yesterday, and with quite a few rides closed and most others operating at reduced capacity it made for longer lines than I'd ever encountered there before. Even still, there were plenty of rides with no lines and it was still a great day. It allowed me to ride stuff I hadn't before as well. I only managed two rides on Phoenix and one on Twister aa both were only running one (socially distanced) train making for lines around 30 minutes. The lines still moved faster than most Six Flags roller coasters running multiple trains but I've become used to walking up to empty rows at Knoebels so having actual lines to stand in was strange for sure! Some flats also,had longer lines than I've seen before, such as waiting 3-4 cycles for the Flyers, Paratroopers, Kosmotron, and Bumper Cars. Rode both trains for the first time which was a nice change of pace. Also finally got that long awaited Kosmos Kurves credit. Not as good as the old kiddie coaster but still had some great pops of air. Also rode the Flume for the first time in a while. Reminds me of Canobie's flume with two drops, a tunnel, and fast sections at ground level. And, of course, lunch consisted of Pierogies and a mashed potato bowl at Oasis. Long ride home (I-84 is my least favorite stretch of pavement in the country as the PA and NY sections are entirely dark and boring and then it immediately becomes a clusterf*ck through most of CT) made me wish Quassy was open 24 hours to ride Wooden Warrior on the way through at midnight. But it was great to actually get some coaster riding in during that weird ass summer of 2020.
  24. I'm glad my answer to this is now Phoenix and not Whirlwind at Castaway Cove.
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