We were invited to go to Efteling today for the opening of their new coaster Baron 1898. Of course Efteling, being who they are, created a nice legend around this new ride.
The story goes that Baron Gustave Hooghmoed once found gold in this fertile soil. Now he has built a mine to delve this gold and become very rich. The earth spirits, appearing as white women (witte wieven in Dutch), tell him to leave the earth in peace. The Baron does not listen to them and is looking for miners to work in his mine. And so we as park guests can enter this mine and find out if we can survive the wrath of the white women.
The theming of this ride is awesome. There are so many details to look at and wherever possible authentic materials have been used alongside mist effects and video mapping. This creates a great atmosphere, as if you are entering a real turn of the century goldmine.
The ride itself is solid. It is a short coaster but the elements are nice, fluent, the helix pulls some G’s and to finish there is a nice little floater airtime hill. There are two preshows in the station building that are bilingual, Dutch and English. Another preshow is found after boarding the train and before going onto the lifthill.
I really liked the ride overall. I am a theming enthusiast, so the backdrop and story add a lot for me. I think the ride is perfect for Efteling to expand their ride offering to a more adventurous public. The park targets an audience of families and now they offer more for the daredevils every family surely has, while still maintaining the Efteling feeling.
But a picture says more than a thousand words, so here are a few.
We got the key to the new coaster today
But I had to dress up as a miner
Looks like I did a good job
I am part of the crew now
I love an event with chicks
The welcome was in front of the Efteling theater
And a marching band was disrupting the festivities
So the miners decided that we should follow the band to the mine
Lots of noise
Luckily the band knew the way and we did not get lost
There were quite a few guests
Efteling put up these big screens for people that were standing far away
The placing of Saint Barbara, patron of miners around the world
Baron Gustave Hooghmoed himself ushering us into the mine
The first riders
I can see myself!
After exiting the mine it is custom you drink milk to cleanse your insides of the dust
Efteling did a good job with the food at the event
My lovely photographer showing us where the coaster is
You can choose to be single rider or be fun and hang out with your friends
When entering the coaster they will give you these tickets that indicate your row
The entrance to the mine and the ride sign
Even the garbage bins have been given a Baron 1898 touch
Random bucket (or is it?)
Yes, we will join and work in the mine
This bell sounds every time a train goes down the shaft
There are so many lovely details on the building
The tower is just stunning!
More miners going down into the mine shaft
They look happy
More happy riders
We can fly!
Going upside down
Round and round
Even the chimney works
One last look at the mining complex
We had a lovely day! Thank you Efteling for building this great ride!