(Disclaimer: This is my first photo TR posted from my phone. Apologies if something goes weird or is out of place somehow. )
Last Thursday a friend and I had the chance to visit USH for their first official day back open as a park with rides. Getting a reservation the week prior was a breeze. In minutes I was all set for my visit during the "AP Bonus Days" that USH decided to put on.
When I arrived parking, temperature screening and security were all quick and easy. Moved quickly to the park gates where where I was asked for my AP and the reservation code. After that I was through the turnstiles and in a CA park open with rides for the first time since February 2020! Boy was that ever a good feeling.
Arriving at about 1pm to a park that would close at 6pm doesn't sound like a long time but it was enough to hit up all that was running. Simpsons and Despicable Me were both closed, presumably because of the CA 15min indoor time limit. Studio Tour, Jurassic World, Mummy, Transformers, and the new Pets dark ride were all open though, as were most all food and merch locations. Of course plenty of covid safety protocols were in place. Temp screening entering CityWalk, social distancing markers in every queue, and hand sanitizer sprayed on every guest's hands before boarding any ride. None of it was any problem at all. Overall it was a great first day back now that CA parks are allowed to operate again.
Here are some photos from around the park on its first day back!
After a long wait it's finally time to reopen! Yay!
New park policies regarding masks, distancing, where to eat/drink were clearly communicated and easy to follow. Anyone who's been to Japan should already be familiar with only eating/drinking in areas designated for that!
Distancing markers in queues and signage for foot traffic helped keep things flowing.
I could really get used to this limited capacity!
Oh, hello kitty!
First stop, my first visit to Pottersville in over a year!
Limited capacity and it being a Thursday made for a really comfortable time with hardly anyone milling around.
No line for Butterbeer! But plenty of markers around for when people do queue up for it.
I even had my *very first* Butterbeer to commemorate the occasion! It was frozen and wonderful on a warm spring day.
Virtually no wait for Forbidden Journey!
Next we headed over to see the new Secret Life of Pets dark ride. The former British street has totally been redone as New York City. It's almost like there was a little Revolutionary War again right here.
The entrance is right across from Despicable Me, making this area poised to be kid-central.
The queue is one of the best Universal has ever put on. Sooo many AAs to see, such as Buddy pleasuring himself in the kitchen here.
Life size AAs of the franchise's main characters chat with each other about all the lost puppies, that's us, they see passing by.
The rabbit up above the bed is another working AA. I honestly can't remember the last time I went through a ride queue with this many AAs!
The ride is perfect for kids and just a great family dark ride. Of course it also has misters and screens, but it was still very enjoyable whether or not you're familiar with the movies.
Even for 12 year old me...
Simpsons was down sadly, but how often do you get a chance to take this photo with almost nobody in the way?
Bart was very happy to finally be back!
Studio Tour time! Couldn't get a photo but the new loading procedures are very well done here. Guests are directed to a car and row directly out of the main queue as though they were boarding a coaster instead of a tram. It's quite efficient and prevents congestion nicely.
I loves me some Back to the Future picture cars!
Oh no! A flash flood! AAHHHHH!!
SHARK! SHARK!! SHARK!!!
Overall the Studio Tour looks great for having been closed for a year. Kong/Earthquake/Fast & Furious all move like they just came out of refurb. War of the Worlds here looks as freaky as ever.
The Starway to the Lower Lot provides a nice view of Super Nintendo World coming soon.
Just so great to finally be back in a CA park with rides open!
Splash down after a new encounter with the Indominus Rex. The new additions really help make this ride feel more complete.
Transformers was running great also. Maybe I'm just out of practice but it felt like it was bouncing and whipping around with a bit more force.
Many lockers were closed to discourage people from bumping up against each other.
Heading out after a great day!
As a 90s kid who grew up with American Gladiators and Nickelodeon, this view will *always* be recognizable!
What better way to close out the day than at my favorite movie-based eatery?
OM NOM NOM!!!
Awesome first day back at USH. The park looked great. Rides ran great. Employees seemed happy to be back. I'm definitely looking forward to more visits as life here slowly goes back to normal!