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BigDipper 80

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Everything posted by BigDipper 80

  1. This year's list consists only of Cedar Point (where I ride hosted all summer) and Kings Island. I did get to visit Tokyo Dome City/LaQua, but I didn't ride anything. I took the train over to Tokyo Disneyland as well, but due to time constraints and having to get back to my house in Hanamigawa, I couldn't go in and merely sighed and stared longingly at World Bazaar from the other side of the gate. It was a painful experience, but the mere fact that I was in Japan made things a bit better .
  2. I'm currently working on a re-creation of a coaster everyone on TPR knows and loves (as well as the namesake for my username), Geauga Lake's (in)famous Big Dipper . The layout itself was pretty simple to nail down, but I'm doing a lot of custom support work to make it look as accurate as I possibly can, so although it looks mostly done, I still have quite a ways to go.
  3. ^Thanks! From the right angle, CP can actually be a pretty good-looking place, despite all of the corporate-ness that has invaded in the past decades. ^^Ocean Motion would have probably been better near the lake, being nautical and whatnot, but it does create some dialogue with Hurricane Hannah's, so I won't complain too much. The fact that it was saved at all is a plus, and I completely agree with you about the sign.
  4. ^Thanks! I only have a few more updates to go, and I'm glad you've enjoyed what I've put up so far.
  5. It's time for some more photos, this time of the main midway! The updated location for Ocean Motion really looks fantastic. I'm glad CP decided to keep the ride when they put in Windseeker, and it really compliments the nautical theme of Hurricane Hanna's across the way. It's quite some view looking down the peninsula. The flowers under the Sky Ride are always beautiful. And speaking of Sky Ride, it's great that CP still has one of these classic rides. Along with Cedar Downs and the train, it's one of those rides that helps make Cedar Point Cedar Point. The true gems left over from the park's storied past. The Colosseum is an impressive building. Probably the best carousel in the world. Actually, it's one of my favorite rides anywhere. If there's one park that's gone now that I wish I could have gone to, it's Euclid Beach. It was an amazing place in its heyday, and it's a shame that Cleveland lost a true amusement park gem. At least Cedar Downs survived! Cedar Downs is such a unique ride, and it really stands out amongst all the "generic-ness" of CP. I'll never stop singing its praises, and I'm glad that the park has the good sense to take care of it. I wish the park had more shady spots like this one, near the marina gate. It has a very "classic" feel. Unlike parks like Kennywood, which kept much of its traditional infrastructure over the years and added on from there, Cedar Point went through phases where infrastructure would be completely updated and wipe out many of the older outdated buildings, so it's hard to find lots of "older" architecture throughout the park. That being said, both of these buildings escaped the march of progress and are some of the oldest buildings on the property, most likely over a century old. I actually like the funky 1970s architecture that is scattered throughout the park, but it's a shame that it gets swallowed up by the seas of concrete. Cedar Point has three Arrow car rides. Each with different cars. This is one of them. That's something else. Iron Dragon got a very nice new sign along with its reconfigured queue this year. As boring as Iron Dragon is, it's pretzel turn over the water is gorgeous. ID's pretzel turn and Corkscrew's corkscrews are just a brilliant, creative, kinetic use of space, and it's borderline "artsy", in terms of ride design and landscape architecture. Pure genius on Arrow and CP's part. One parting shot of ID's two lift hills. I give major props to ID's crew this year- it's not easy to dispatch a train every thirty seconds without stopping a train out on the second lift, but they're good at it. Only two more batches of photos before this TR comes to an end! I hope you all have been enjoying this tour!
  6. It really is a phenomenal view. Water AND mountains? I can't think of any other park that has both juxtaposed like that.
  7. In all honesty, SOB's layout wasn't terribly exciting. Big drops, yes, but it didn't really "do" all that much, almost like those Japanese Jet coasters.
  8. Cincinnati is home to the largest Oktoberfest celebration in the United States, and while it's nothing compared to the one in Munich, it's still a fun time, with Fifth Street and Fountain Square lined with food stalls and beer vendors and even some carnival rides! There was also a Reds game that evening, so downtown was especially hopping. I didn't have much time to get a ton of photos, but these should give you an idea of what the festival was like. Welcome to Cincinnati! You can't go wrong with German food, especially in a town with such a huge German heritage. Queen City Square's "tiara" pokes up in the distance. An oompah band playing some polka at Fountain Square. There were actually quite a few musical acts set up along Fifth Street, including a live glockenspiel! There were even horse-drawn carriage rides. These chicken hats were everywhere. All of the signs had terrible puns, just like this one. A classic flat with the P&G Building (affectionately known as the Dolly Parton Building by the locals) in the background. Whee! Typical carnival midway game crap up for the winning. There were so many vendors serving every kind of German (and Italian too, apparently) food imaginable. This is five blocks from where we started, and it's still jam-packed with people and vendors. I don't think I've ever seen this flat before. Can't have midway rides without a Ferris wheel. I hate this ride. Had a bad experience with one at the IX Indoor Amusement Park too. I had never seen one of these before, and I had no idea what to expect from it. Before long, it transformed into a hellish near-vertical spinning Troika-on-Steroids. Terrifying. A strange Art Deco spire located near the P&G building. A nicer view of Queen City Square. Fourth Street has some incredibly beautiful architecture. Cincinnati used to be called the Paris of the West, and although much of it has turned to surface parking, there are still quite a few beautiful buildings worth noting, and the city's current revitalization is really helping to spruce things up, particularly in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. A view of the Roebling Bridge from the new Riverfront Park between the Reds ballpark and the Bengals stadium. The sun had gone down, and the lights started shining on the fountains. Heading back to the car to head home. The namesake fountain of Fountain Square. It's a very pretty area at night. One final shot of the Carew Tower (the prototype for the Empire State Building). Hope you enjoyed this quick tour of the Queen City's Oktoberfest!
  9. ^PM me your address and I'll send you one empty envelope . Moving right along- let's take a quick look at Cedar Point's two Beemers, who will be joined by their little sister next year (CP fanboys, please don't call it Gatey...): I'm not a huge fan of cobra rolls. The snap in the middle of the corkscrew bit is always a bit uncomfortable, and I just feel that the element doesn't "flow" very well. Too bad there wasn't a train going through the loop when I shot this... I love this helix. Raptor is truly a forceful old-school B&M. And now for a handful of shots of Mantis, my home this past summer (and the best ride in the park ) Despite the hours and hours I spent at this ride, I only have five decent shots of her. Unfortunate. A parting shot of the big bad bug. Next up is the Main Midway!
  10. Some more Frontiertown pics: Mean Streak has such an impressive structure, even during the daytime. These photos were taken from Lighthouse Point. Another shot of Boneville during the day. Boneville is my favorite thing in the entire park, and to miss out on it is a shame. None of these shots are particularly "artsy", but they do a good job at showing off the sets. Each of the scenes has quite a bit of slightly politically incorrect, Marc Davis-quality humor in them. The big jug of moonshine is labelled "Granny's Good-Natured Alcohol"! Notice how the skeleton firefighters are completely missing the fire, as well as the saloon girl at the top of the stairs. Lots of fun visual gags abound. Before Frontier Trail opened in 1971, the only way to get back to Frontiertown (and the Mine Ride!) was by riding the train or taking the Frontier Lift. If you know what this building used to be used for, you'll win... absolutely nothing. Sorry. Frontiertown is really well-done. Cedar Point really did some nice theming back in the 60s. I'll leave with a photo of Cedar Point's infamous "haunted carousel horse". Supposedly, the old Frontiertown carousel would spin backwards at nighttime, thanks to this haunted horse. We're about halfway there now! Still to come: Mantis, Raptor, the main midway, and a few parting shots of Disaster Transport.
  11. ^I really do think that when you spend enough quality time with a ride, you grow to love it, regardless of whether or not it's the "best". After working on Mantis, it became one of my favorite rides to just ride again and again on my days off.
  12. Now that we're in Frontiertown, let's take a look around the area: I absolutely love Maverick. It's such a completely unique experience compared to the other coasters in the park. Because of Maverick's location at the end of the peninsula, it's a fairly hard ride to get photos of. A nice sign in Maverick's queue. I think it was someone in the CP thread who mentioned that Maverick was built for sunsets, and it really was. It's hard to believe that when the Mine Ride opened, it had 2-hour waits. At least its station is nice. This shot was a bit of a "happy accident", but I love how all but the first two kids are motion-blurred.
  13. I can't be of too much assistance, but as far as I could tell while I was in Tokyo, all of the rides at Tokyo Dome City were up and running, except Thunder Dolphin. Also, unless you purely want your trip to be about parks, I'd recommend spending more than one day doing "general sightseeing". I was there for two weeks, visited zero parks, and still didn't get to see and experience everything I wanted to hit up. Of course, if that isn't your cup of tea, that's understandable too, but it would be an absolute shame to not spend some time just exploring one of the coolest cities on the planet.
  14. ^I was trying to time my shot with the on-ride photo, but I had no idea that it would turn out like that. I was pleasantly surprised with it. If you look closely, you'll notice that each car has the exact same riders in it! It was a very weird, happy accident.
  15. Let's continue on with a few more evening photos: ...And that's all I've got for Luminosity. For whatever reason, I don't seem to have very many photos of Starlight Experience. Although it isn't marketed as such this year, and the Peanuts balloons are gone. Let's go for a ride on the train, shall we? Welcome to Frontiertown, ladies and gentlemen! I know how much everyone loves Mean Streak... ...But you have to admit she looks mighty pretty at night. Thanks to the strobe flash from the onride photo, I was able to capture a "ghost train" using long exposure. One final shot of Mean Streak from Maverick's exit bridge. Still many more photos of Frontiertown (and the rest of Cedar Point) to come!
  16. If either of you (or anyone else, for that matter) would like a full-sized copy of any of my photos, just shoot me a PM, and I'd be happy to send it your way. As a matter of fact, I did try to get some Maxair shots using long-exposure. Unfortunately, I never managed to get the timing right, so the photos either ended up washed-out or just part of the arc, like this: ...So not the best. But I do have a lot more night shots that actually turned out that I'll be uploading soon. Thanks for all the comments, everyone! I'm glad you are enjoying looking at these as much as I enjoyed taking them.
  17. ^I honestly never noticed a difference between the right and left seat. Both provide plenty of airtime . ^^I'd love to see some LED chasers going up the lift and maybe even through the immelman. That whole side of the park will absolutely shine at night.
  18. ^The park really does come alive at night now. I wasn't able to get any great shots of Luminosity, but I managed to snag quite a few other nighttime photos from around the park. I really feel that how a park looks at night is very important to the overall experience, and although Cedar Point doesn't have much "classic" lighting like you'd see at Coney Island at the turn of the 20th century, I'm quite impressed with the thoroughly "modern" approach the park has taken with its nighttime offerings. But enough my ramblings, and onto the photos! The sun sets, and I play around with panorama shots. This was taken from the Lighthouse Point Pier, for anyone who may have been curious. Black and white is fun to toy around with. I took a shot in color from the same angle and the ferris wheel looks great, but I prefer this shot over it. For those who were curious, yes, the Ferris wheel's lights make fun LED patterns just like Windseeker. Unfortunately, because of the slow load times and short period that the wheel is actually spinning enough for the effect to show up, I only got one decent shot of it. Speaking of Windseeker... Let me give a special shoutout to Real, who "discovered" the amazing long-exposure patterns this ride makes. I'll leave you hanging with one more long-exposure shot, this time of Troika Troika Troika. There's still a LOT more to come, including nighttime photos of the CP&LE Railroad and Mean Streak, as well as many more daytime photos of the rides, attractions, and midways!
  19. ^ I honestly hadn't believed that the ejector seat would make that much of a difference, but the ride experience in that seat and any other seat is like night and day. It's incredibly violent, and completely spectacular. Although Gemini is still my favorite Arrow at CP.
  20. Let's continue along with what most people consider to be Cedar Point's star attraction: Whether you like the ride or not, it's hard to deny that Millennium Force is a good-looking coaster. That's pretty steep. Two trains and a Power Tower car! Though multiple-train shots aren't that difficult at CP... One of those obligatory "everyone must take this photo while at Cedar Point" shots. The new lights look fantastic. In fact, the entire park looks fantastic at night now. But we'll save some of that for the next update Gay Pride MF, as seen from the marina. A slightly different angle. Hopefully all these night shots of the hill haven't gotten too repetitive! A similar shot to the one above, but with a bit more focus on Mantis this time. I think it's one of the photos I like the most. MF from Camp Snoopy. It's a *bit* too noisy, but it came out decently, I think. You can expect more night photos from around the park in the next update!
  21. Links to photos: The Beach, Magnum XL-200, Soak City - Scroll Down Millennium Force (day and night shots) - Page 1 Night Photos, and AMAZING Windseeker photos- Page 2 Even More Night Photos (Luminosity, Frontiertown) - Page 3 Maverick and Cedar Creek Mine Ride - Page 3 Mean Streak, Boneville, and Frontiertown during the day - Page 4 Raptor and Mantis - Page 4 The Main Midway - Page 4 Top Thrill Dragster, Corkscrew, and Blue Streak - Page 5 Wicked Twister Midway, featuring Disaster Transport - Page 5 When one spends two months at Cedar Point, he is afforded with plenty of opportunities to take photos. I took nearly 1500 photos of whatever I could as I scoured my way through this massive park bit by bit, day by day. Even if I had taken 1500 more, I probably wouldn't have covered everything, or have gotten all the shots that I had hoped to get! It's obviously impossible to post every single photo of mine, so I'll be including some of my favorite shots I took this summer. I've tried to group them by ride or section of the park in order to create some semblance of order. Let's start in a place that few Cedar Point TR's begin, at the place that gives the park its reason for existence: If it wasn't for this beach, it's unlikely that the peninsula would have transformed into what it is today. If you look to the north, you see Hotel Breakers... ...But to the south is this lovely cluster of rides. This part of the skyline will look much different next year. I love how Hotel Breakers sprawls out along the beach. She's the grand old lady of Sandusky. This is the Bon-Air section of the hotel. I was messing around with the settings on my camera. I'm glad that CP has these history plaques throughout the park. So much of their storied past has been paved over or just ignored outright as each new incarnation of the park has paved over the old one. The rotunda is lovely. The guestrooms, not as lovely. This was in the lobby. It's a pretty nice painting of the resort during the Boekling era. A lovely view from one of the windows in Breakers Tower. Everyone says that CP needs a beachfront wooden coaster, but Magnum has that job pretty well covered. Do yourself a favor and ride in 1-3. I've never actually felt that a roller coaster was going to throw me out of it before, except in that row. Easily the most violent airtime of any ride. Magnum is just a fun coaster to take photos of. It's easy to get some good facial expressions as guests fly over the triangle hills! This one is cropped pretty unusually, but I wanted the train to be easily seen, and the full-sized photo can't be uploaded to TPR's servers. But look at that airtime! Bliss. No coat hangers were harmed in the construction of Magnum XL-200. Let's take a look at the newly-repainted Soak City slides. This, my friends, is one of the best airtime hills of any coaster. It throws you up out of your seat and holds you there for what feels like an eternity. I love it. And one more shot down the beach. It really is amazing how quiet the beach is compared to the rest of the park. I'd say that's quite a few shots for today, but there's still a lot of ground left to cover!
  22. Not to be "that guy", but Space Spiral was actually built by Von Roll (the same company who built Sky Ride) . I too like observation towers, but Space Spiral really has been looking shoddy for a while now, with its top level closed for years plus the aforementioned lack of air conditioning and dirty windows. I was never really happy with its location either. Hopefully within the next few years some new low-thrill low-height-restriction rides are added back. I'm still hoping for a dark ride at some point, especially now that DT's nearing the end! With DT's removal, that leaves Iron Dragon as the sole 46" coaster. Its lines already often spill out onto the midway now that most of its queues have been removed. I can't imagine how bad it'll get when it's the only "medium" coaster in the park for the little ones.
  23. Flight Drop Tower Bansheehawk may be the the big thing of the hour, but there have been some other small new things that have popped up recently as well. Most notably, that all of Mean Streak's infield queues have been torn out. Every enthusiast loves photos of dirt! I highly doubt this is anything more than the removal of rarely-used queues, but still. I've never seen this green engine before this year, but she's been on the line for a few weeks now. Anyone know where she's from? That's all I wanted to throw out there. Onward with the wingrider discussion!
  24. The only problem with that is that if that tree were to be removed, Cedar Point would effectively lose one-half of its total foliage.
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