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The Six Flags Magic Mountain (SFMM) Discussion Thread

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Ok, so I'm way behind on replying! Let's hit this!...


Dude, what's with the volunteer program? I thought volunteering was only for non-profits, not some big corporation! Does anyone know how this works or have more information about it?


SFMM has a volunteer program as well. If you ever see an "employee" in a food building wearing a red apron and visor, then they are actually a volunteer. And if the games barker isn't in a designated SFMM uniform, they are also a volunteer.


SFMM has this to allow schools and organizations trying to raise money, a chance to work positions for a day, and the money that they would have normally made for themselves, instead gets donated to their organization. So high school clubs, teams, so on and so forth frequently take advantage of this. I am also personally convinced that SFMM works with the county and allows criminals to work their community service hours in the park.


Just kidding...




...I hope.




I highly doubt the rumour of the ride actually moving is false. Remember, they dont just set the footers down into the ground 20 or 30 ft. Those things are drilled WAY down. The ride Im sure was not in danger, however, the path probably was.


That retaining wall looks to be alot more for the pathway than the ride. If any part of that rides supports moves, it would yank something else out of whack. Im sure they were well aware that the soil around it couldnt be depended upon to hold the supports up.


I'm not an engineer, so I wouldn't know for sure. But yes, while the footers do extend far into the ground (I watched them spin the rebar together for the footers), I dont believe they were intended to undergo the lateral forces provoked when the terrain has eaten away like that, unless specifically filled to do so (like with the 'eggturn megafooter').


This question is for the true engineer types, and manufacturer afficionados. In Tatsu's case, *if* something had gone drastically wrong, or *still* goes drastically wrong with the footing after the retaining wall is created and backfilled, who assumes ultimate responsibility for that undersight? Would B&M not be somewhat liable for not conducting proper research such as soil samples, and possible seismic activity results? I've never thought to actually inquire about who's responsible for what in a coaster's development.


While I wasn't in your "target" kind of person to respond, I will say that I heard the responsiblity does in fact fall upon the shoulders of the surveying company, as joedonuts said. And in response to joedonuts, I do not know for sure who contracted the surveyors, but I did hear they were local to this area.




What are the chances of X opening before the end of December? Or at least a soft opening.


I know this was answered, but I thought I'd be serious for a moment.


The forecast that X would open in mid-January was a conservative one and chances are fair that it will in fact open then.


But the truth is, there is pretty much zero chance that the ride will open BEFORE that time. And when the ride is ready to reopen--it will just reopen! SFMM doesn't have "soft openings" like Disney.







Hope that answered your questions! I plan on making another update next week! We made an interesting find at the mountain--more interesting than closing their gas-powered go-carts for electrical reasons!



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i went yesterday.


all i have to say is that operations were horrible. the worst that they have been in a long time. lets put it this way, the parking lot wasn't even a quarter of the way full, and wait times were two and a half hours. my cousin and i didn't even get to go on tatsu.

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Hey, Jahan, (Or anybody else who might know)


When I talked to Mike Smith from S&S while I was at Fuji-Q last summer, he clearly indicated that X was getting refitted with new trains that have the refinements made between the two installations.


What is the likelyhood that they could retrofit dropping floors into that station? (I've never been on X)


Do you think the changes made to the system could help that ride? EJ has periods of under 3 minute dispatches when operating 2 trains. (And the ops get flowing. And no guest hassles spring up, etc.)


Just curious what's happening over there, and if anyone knows more about the new trains.

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^I don't know about the new trains, but I think that one of the smartest things they could do is implement the improvements they made with Eejanaika into X. If they have improved the issue with the weight of the trains, load times, consistently smoother ride in all seats/rows, etc. then as much as I want it to reopen sooner rather than later, I would rather see them have X down for a few more months and make every improvement possible.


As far as the dropping floor-it would be a major ordeal for them to refit the current station with it, but if they could I think that would help as well.


And I think although the upgrades would help X, what would really help is ensuring that the ride is properly staffed, they are running at least two trains at all times, and the crew is on their toes. I have only waited 1.5 hours on a Saturday night in the summertime (June) for X when the line and station were properly staffed and two trains were running. I think they are totally capable of making the ride run at capacity, if it is adequately staffed.

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Quick TR for 12-28-06, no pictures.


Crowds were suprisingly a bit on the heavy side.


Rides not up:Ninja, Cyclone 500, and X. From what I saw, all the flat rides were open, as were the Bugs Bunny World Rides.


My new pet peeve for SFMM. Backstage gates that are left open, for guests to see CO2 tanks, benches, umbrellas, and trash dumpsters. Just not something guests need to see.


An old pet peeve for SFMM, and everywhere else for that matter. The Healy wheel shoes that little kids where. I saw three kids fall today going down paths or stairs. Why do parents let there kids where them to an amusement park.


The 1st Magic Show at magic moments saw an almost full audience.


Check out pictures of the show here:



I used FlashPasses for the first time with my group today. It is great to bypass large portions of the line, but what is a bit frustrating, is having the employee take the FlashPass, then instructing us to just merge with the people who have been waiting in the regular line. It isn't a big deal, it just creates that akward moment, of "hi, I paid money, so move over please", instead of the employee acting as a mediator between the two said akward parties.


As far as crews on the rides, Scream, Goliath, Riddlers, Viper seemed to be running at a fast pace.


Superman employees were moving backwards, with dispatch intervals at close to 5 minutes. Terrible.


Today was the first time that I have made it to the loading gate and have Tatsu break down. (I saw Jahan, and a few others on side 1 at the same point.) The train on side 1 was brought into the flying position before being dispatched, and thats when you hear "side 1 is 10-7" over the intercom. So, because side 1 was is flying position, they weren't allowed to send the side 2 trains out of the station either. The employee at panel, and the employee on side 2 were bickering over the intercom, as to weather or not they could send the side 2 train because the guests were ready to go, but weren't in the flying position. They had all the guests on side 2 get back into the queue line, while they called for a mechanic. I had FlashPasses at that point, so didn't mind comming back, we were going down the exit ramp as we saw a mechanic going up. The ride was back up probably no more than 15 minutes later. (Jahan probably could take the story over at this point.)


I just felt bad for the guests on side one who were waiting in the flying position for quite some time.


Park was relativley clean despite the whirlwind of napkins flying around from all the wind.


All in all nice day at the park.

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^ Actually when we first arrived they were having pretty good dispatches. But when they started loading handicap in the flashpass rows, it all went downhill. Then it broke, and after waiting for around 15 minutes or so we just went back down the flashpass stairs which was more of a thrill than Tatsu would of been.


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Good afternoon everybody!


Welcome to yet another SFMM Update! We’re currently knee-deep into the off-season now, yet I’ve miraculously managed to scrape up enough crap at the Mountain to put together this update!


We’re now counting down the finals days of 2006—the year that was supposed to be marked by what can be described as none other than a “revolution” in the Six Flags Company, only to end up in disappointment for many. And as we look ahead to 2007, we can only hope to see the park enter “A Year of a Million Refurbishments”, as intended earlier. Of course, a new complexity emerges, as the fate of the park apparently lies in the hands of whoever is to buy it. That announcement is supposed to come soon. But the best thing we can do at this point is sit and wait….patiently. ….And no sitting on the handrails!


Yesterday the flags around Valencia Falls flew at half-staff, in response to the recent passing of President Gerald Ford.


…although, what one finds is this: President Gerald Ford inspired Chevy Chase to begin writing jokes and eventually act as Gerald Ford on Saturday Night Live, thus launching Chevy Chase’s acting career. It is this acting career which would eventually guide Chevy Chase to Wally World in a National Lampoon’s Vacation, which concluded at Magic Mountain. So, I’m pretty sure the flags are at half-staff in remembrance of Chevy Chase’s acting career, which is also dead.


…of course, his acting career died quite some time ago, so who knows!





Ok, I’ll cut it out! Let’s get to the actual update!




Less Junk in da Trunk


Last week, I was at the Mountain with friends, helping show around a foreigner (from Texas). Now, foreigners are always refreshing, but there’s one problem with the lot them—they need their Psyclone credit. And unfortunately, you can’t just sit Psyclone out because the ride needs 17 riders to dispatch, so every body counts!


Now as we were heading up the lift of Psyclone, something incredibly strange caught my eye! The junkyard was gone!


The junkyard, thanks to Microsoft Live Local or whatever it’s called.


For those who don’t know, there has been a junkyard behind Psyclone for quite some time now. When I worked at the park, I would frequently take a walk among the junk as I was totally fascinated by what history hid itself among the piles of useless crap back there. Old metro trains, pieces of coaster track, old signage and ticket booths, logs, boats, wheels—even a few X seats at one time. And like at any museum, I had a policy of “look, don’t touch”, but I must admit that it felt more like a playground for me than a museum. But for some reason, nearly all of the crap has been removed!


That’s a lot of crap to lose, even for me!


I smell an Aqua-Trax!




Also, note in the above two pictures the new fence being installed at the bottom of the shots.


Exclusive new-fence POV shot!



Now I can understand if they were fencing IN the junk, to keep nasty little park-historian-yet-irresistibly-attractive-ride-operators such as myself away from the Tetanus-infested and rotting artifacts—but to remove the crap and THEN fence in the land…


…I’m still scratching my head over that one.



Perhaps Six Flags is just cleaning their room! Or perhaps they’re selling off the crap for spare change. Or perhaps, and I’m not necessarily qualified to jump to this conclusion…but perhaps they’ve started to move out.


*cues dramatic background music*




Of course, if “Mark Shapiro has anything to do with it”, Magic Mountain will be sold to another park operator (link to article: HERE) So, why they wouldn’t just leave the crap for the next operator to polish, I don’t know. Or perhaps this is already the bidding of the next operator, I still don’t know.


Point being is, something interesting is going on back there and I don’t know what it is.






Speaking of Psyclone!...I have been on the ride twice in the past week, the first of which was decent and the second of which was—dare I say it—enjoyable.


*cues “Ooooooooooh”s*


Now a fair reason for this is that the cold is the right weather for running that ugly-baby. The track is less likely to “pump” and the trains are being forced to conform. But it would also appear that Magic Mountain is still working on it! They haven’t given up on that ride yet! (which is giving it more faith than I would!)


Holy crap! They’re really brining in the big dogs for this one!


It would appear that the next wave of supplies has arrived to get that ride to behave! Confusing, I know!


That’s like, a chunk of the ride there!



So it will be interesting to see what Six Flags is doing with the ride. …if Six Flags is even responsible for this. Either way, I still think they won’t see the last of the ride’s hell until they get new trains on that demon!





The Riddler’s Revenge’s Revenge


“Ecuador! …thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, waaah waaah, thump…….



The Riddler’s Revenge was really the last major addition of a Magic Mountain that we all like to reminisce about. With scenery, landscaping, an aesthetically-pleasing layout, station music, ride operator costumes (custom to the ride), ride-integration, so on and so forth—it was a pretty kick ass ride. Still is, in my eyes.



But as the years passed, the scenery would fall into disrepair, the station-music would mute (some find this a good thing), all employee costumes would be replaced by the generic blue polo shirts, and the station lights would stop working, so on and so forth.


By the time I was operating the ride, we had about one or two working “question-mark lights”, nearly silent station music, an elevator (for the handicapped) with a permit that had expired years before I had arrived, ageing signage, problematic lockers, overgrown plants, breaking trashcans, and a “misters” system with broken nozzles (which would pour down on guests) and which would back up the local sewage system, resulting in some pretty raunchy smells.




Now, I surprisingly enough, hadn’t been on the ride in several months (once missing out on a ride with Laura and Kristi, it just didn’t seem worth riding anymore). But upon returning to the ride yesterday, I have to say I was really pleased with the condition that the station was in.


The air conditioning unit is sporting new filters and removed graffiti.


On top of that improved A/C unit, the lights (both station and the “question mark lights”) were all working, the music was at an ideal level (present, but not overly annoying), and the station was overwhelmingly clean.


Not quite as amazing as I remember back in 1998, but still, it was pleasant.


The elevator has had some work and sports a renewed permit.


…this pleased ME, as every couple of months we would have to call in a guest trapped in the elevator which was supposed to be barricaded off.



The new “vLockers”, which looks more like “Nockers” to me!



The lockers have been upgraded to the newer “vLockers”. These are nice because they are credit-card based, as more people seem to have credit cards these days than loose change.


The plants along the exit pathway have also been cutback, allowing more light in during the night-hours. And signage is also new, clean, and easily noticed. Hell, even the dispatches were nice! They weren’t stacking! Good job Chris!



All and all I was rather pleased with what I saw at Riddler’s.





…ironically, I can’t say the same for the Riddler’s nemesis, Batman.



I would “cue background music”, but none of the speakers are working!



It would appear that the Batman area, while looking great around the time of the recent Batman movie-release (when they added the cop-car back in), has begun to fall into disrepair. I’m not even talking about Gotham city, which was in horrible condition when I worked there and still is. I’m talking about the ride queue, station, and exit.


The queue could use a repainting and perhaps some fresh landscaping.


Wonder why they weren’t running the fountain? Hmmm.


You would also think that the section of queue that is meant to look “trashy”, like a junkyard would be easy to maintain, but apparently it isn’t.


…still not working.


Upon entering the “sewer”, you face a non-working fan (which I guarantee you, would cost like 2 bucks to fix)—of course, to accompany a fan which no longer spins is an absence of sound effects and music. The station lighting is no longer timed with the dispatches, the lighting on the “bat suit” doesn’t work—and don’t even get me started on the mist pits throughout the ride and the fog as you reenter the station.



With improvements at Psyclone, then Riddler’s, one can only hope that the trend continues and Batman gets a little bit of tender love and care.


Speaking of Batman, I had two young TPR’ers approach me while exiting the ride, but I had not realized that I had been recognized as I didn’t hear them call, and continued to leave them. My dearest apologies!


….I’ll buy you a churro sometime.




A Wholellota Random Crap!


Ok folks…I was supposed to have a few more specific things to discuss, but I decided against the overkill. So welcome to the traditional “random crap/miscellaneous” section of the update! Enjoy!


What are you lookin’ at?


Tatsu is splooging all over itself. Power-wash, anyone?


Keeping with the ‘power-wash’ theme, anybody think the fountain in Bunny World could use a hose-down?




SFMM….this is how you do it….


1) Hook up hose to water source.

2) Turn on faucet.

3) Place thumb over top of nozzle.


…you should create a stream of water, powerful enough to wash your crap, without chipping the paint.



Some digging was going on over by Canyon Blaster.


…that, my friends—is why I am not getting laid. So no need to search any farther for a cause.


BTW… does anybody else think that those are mighty-small balls for a trunk that large, on the left of the photo?


…“They see me rolling, in my prix car!”


More retaining walls. …*sigh*


Tatsu say’s “Hi!”


Tatsu also has a new sponsor.


The man LIVES!


The Magic Illusions of Ray Pierce has moved back in! I hope to review it soon, as I have heard good reviews of it thus far.


…Argh! You can’t defeat me, I have a Riddler’s sword!


…no comment…


We ran into another one of our local TPR SFMM-recruits! Unfortunately, I forgot to ask permission to use his photo on the boards, therefore thought I would be fair and protect his identity.






Lastly, but certainly not least…



Just in case you didn’t hear, Magic Mountain Parkway will NOT change it’s name to the Santa-Clarita-Auto-Mall-Center-Long-Name-Drive or whatever.


A link to the article can be found: HERE .






Ok folks! That should about do it for today!



Thank you so much for reading—I hope you enjoyed it! Questions, comments, concerns, and praise are always welcome! Everyone have a great new year! Have fun, be good, and be safe!


-Jahan (arrowfanman@yahoo.com)

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Oh Jahan...that Cell Phone picture is NOTHING!!!


I have a much better story from today, although I didn't have my camera.


I was taking Giovanni to ride Canyon Blaster, the rideop loaded all of the children in, sent the ride off...and proceeded to start talking on his cell phone!!


We're not even talking about the typical SFMM Employee checking text messages, or texting a friend real fast. This guy was ON the phone talking away. The train comes back in the station and the kids start yelling to go again (they usually send it twice unless someone wants off).


Here's where it gets awesome...


The ride op STILL ON THE PHONE dispatches the ride with his ELBOW so he can continue to chat!!!!




I'm sorry, but this is not safe, especially on a childrens ride. I don't understand how SFMM can't crack down on the employee cell phone use. It's disgraceful.

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^^That reminds me of the day I saw the kid sleeping at one of the rear control panels of Tatsu.....had his head down on it and eyes closed.


That was a good update, I had a few thoughts after reading it....


-Last night I caught the old late 70's movie "Rollercoaster" on Encore, (with the climax taking place at SFMM and Craig Wasson playing a hippy kid who rides Revolution with no knowledge that a bomb has been planted directly between his legs on the seat-today, the trims would have automatically set the bomb off-and then, what appears to be an hour or two right after the bomber gets hit by the train, the ride reopens...like that would happen). Anyway-comparing the final shots from that film with the pictures of the front entry plaza, it's amazing how different the park is today. Revolution sure used to be a better ride. It also amazed me at how easy the bomber walked in with explosives-no search and metal detectors back then. (You know, with all the remakes going on in Hollywood, I wish they would try to redo Rollercoaster and update it.....only create some subplot about a vendetta between SFMM and CP/Kinzel vs. Shapiro or crazed SFMM/CP fans not wanting another park to beat them in the "most coasters" record! )


-It would be nice to see the junkyard's departure also lead to Psyclone's departure and them utilizing that space for a GCI wooden coaster in a few years. I don't see that happening, just saying that if and when another coaster comes it would be a good idea. I'd much rather see them get everything they have cleaned up and running all the time. The improvements with Riddler's look to be a step in the right direction, and I heard Tatsu is using both station sides again.


-Ok.....speaking of Tatsu-maybe I am reading this wrong because I couldn't read the whole ad.....but it looks like Tatsu's new sponsor is something called, "KILLZONE Liberation". Maybe it's just me, but when I'm waiting to get on a ride the last thing I want to think about is death. I guess he's trying to get more family oriented stuff in there....


-The new "Nockers" or lockers look pretty cool. I like the fact that they take plastic because I hardly ever carry cash and find myself using the lockers at SFMM a lot when I go. I really wish they did like Knott's did and had the FREE areas for loose articles.....however, I'm not sure I'd feel safe leaving my stuff in a cubby hole at SFMM the way I do Knott's.


-X wasn't mentioned, but I am guessing they are still sticking to their scheduled January date. While I was really hoping that X getting new trains based on Eejanaika improvements was going to happen, I'm doubtful at this point.


-I'm still wondering who the new buyer is, if there even will be one. A few weeks ago I heard a rumor about Herco (Hersheypark) looking into it, and although they likely have the money, I just can't see that happening as it doesn't seem to fit.


-Why don't they just outright ban the use of cell phones by on duty employees in the park? When they clock in, they leave their cell phone at the lockers. Seriously.....in any other service oriented business, there are rules about employees even having cell phones at work. Can you imagine being at a restaurant and in the middle of giving an order and the waiter or waitress tells you, "Hang on, I gotta get this?" or a cashier talking on their cell at the store? To me it's the same thing. I don't have a cell phone but long ago when I did, while it was okay to answer them in an office environment, I have never heard of it being okay to carry and use one in a service based environment.


I'm taking some friends up to SFMM either late January or early February, so I'm hoping X is back up and Tatsu is still planted firmly on the hill and the improvements continue.....

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-X wasn't mentioned, but I am guessing they are still sticking to their scheduled January date. While I was really hoping that X getting new trains based on Eejanaika improvements was going to happen, I'm doubtful at this point.

The parts that were wrapped in plastic are no longer there as of today. They were there a few days ago. Also they keep acting like they want a crew by the Jan. 12th date. Although, all that considered I still will be shocked if it does open by its set date. No 'heavy' activity has been seen yet.


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Great update as usual Jahan.


Real interesting to see that they cleared out the area behind Psyclone. Can't wait to find out what that's all about.


And about Psyclone...I don't know why the park keeps attending to it trying to "fix it." I know there's no real reason for the park to have it razed considering it's mechanically up-to-par, but the ride really is so unpopular that they might as well consider bulldozing it as a means to cutback on funding for staff/maintenance and reallocate that money elsewhere in the park. Then again, Flashback and Metro need to be addressed first before Psyclone is brought up...

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Now a fair reason for this is that the cold is the right weather for running that ugly-baby. The track is less likely to “pump” and the trains are being forced to conform.
Uh... No wonder I was able to enjoy all four of my back-seat Psyclone rides on Wednesday!


Seriously... That was my first time on it, and I kept wondering why everyone complains about Psyclone... I actually kinda liked it in a strange way!


Maybe I'll change my mind once I ride it in warmer weather...

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