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Cedar Point (CP) Discussion Thread

P. 1989: Wicked Twister's permanent closure announced!

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I really wonder about enthusiasts sometimes

 

I do all the time, almost every time I come here or see comments on line, (or see certain (not all) ones in real life) I have a twinge of questioning my life choices haha

The bad apples eh?

 

Well, the Steel Vengeance allure is too powerful. I tried to avoid much review of it, but human nature...I have seen the POVs and some reviews. Also when at KI, KK, HW, there were people at each who have ridden and all raved. So, I am going to CP after all this year, late august. Usually crowds have not been an issue for me then but this time it really doesnt matter, gunna cave and get fast pass plus. I want more than 1-2 on SV and from all I hear even with early access, ya may not get much more.

Also I hear spillover to Maverick has made that line even worse, though possibly it keeps people away from the rest of the park. I am still not 100% sure on getting fast pass, esp for that time of year, but I most likely will.

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It’s amazing what the lines in the rest of the park have been like so far this year. I normally avoid the park like the plague between Memorial Day and August without fast lane, but I’ve been at least once a week since opening day and I only go on weekdays so I can’t say if it’s the same on weekends, but the lines for everything not in frontiertown have been very favorable.

 

I start every day by entering at the resort entrance and walking to SV at the rope drop. Since the two train operation I’ve been on in 20 minutes. then I make my way over to Maverick because by now SV is at least an hour wait, and it’s usually a 5 min wait at Maverick so I get 2 rides before 10. Sometimes 3 depending if the wait is less than 10 min.

 

Now from this point on I estimate that at any given time about 40% of the parks guests are either in line for Vengeance or Maverick. Because every other ride (except raptor early Because it’s in the front) is less than a 15 minute wait unless it’s not running at full capacity or something.

 

The dragster line has been ridiculously short. In fact the last time I was there was Wednesday and it was basically walk on the entire day.

 

ValRavn can sometimes be 15 or less too. And sometimes it’s over an hour.

 

The rest are 15 or less. GateKeeper has been a walk on all season. Millie (world’s best family giga) is a walk on if they are running all 3 trains. The blue train has been down a lot on the days I’ve gone. I don’t know if it’s a coincidence that it just does when I’m there or if it’s been a problem all season or not, but point is, the lines for that and the rest of the park are non existent. It’s been great! And if it keeps up like this I might visit the park 60 times this year instead of my usual 30.

 

 

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Quick Bios:

Me - Big-Fat-card-carrying AARP member and thrill junkie up for any coaster or flat. Oregonian, not the Portlandia kind, I’m from the dry-and-lonely side of the state. Extreme vacation planner (I have spreadsheets and I’m not afraid to use them). Avid motorcycle rider (no I don’t have a Harley). Retired as tech support and web design wench for a motorcycle performance firm a few years ago. Married to a retired UPS guy who is a fiend on two wheels but turns green on anything wilder than Big Thunder Mountain RR. I’ve been to all the major California and Florida parks, that’s about it. My ride list is pathetic, but I plan to work on that over the next few years and I do have the rare and coveted Washington State Fair Classic Coaster cred.

 

Nephew Kevin - Also a native Oregonian, from the wet side of the state, just graduated from Oregon State University as a mechanical engineer, no job yet which is good because we now have Platinum AP’s for Cedar Fair parks and Knotts and Great America are just a day’s drive away. This trip is his graduation present from us (okay, yes, it was a selfish present since I wanted to go as much as he did). Kev’s still a relative neophyte to coaster fanaticism, with trips to DL, WDW, Six Flags MM, and now CP.

 

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Trip Basics - Trip dates: June 18 - 22nd. Flew Southwest PDX to Detroit (cheapest option for us), picked up a nicely upgraded rental car from Avis, drove through a hellacious storm

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and arrived in Sandusky at our LaQuinta about 1am (we had upgraded King rooms in the detached building and they were nice, I’d stay there again). Park days 19th-21st. Platinum passes, bought FastLane+ every day after checking wait times, although only really needed it for SV and Maverick the first two days, the 21st was significantly busier and FL+ really helped. Stayed at the park open to close every day except Wednesday when we scheduled a 10:30 arrival due to expected rain.

 

Ride Ratings:

Before the trip I’d created a spreadsheet (yeah, I’m one of those people) that included ride names, manufacturer, year built, interesting facts, and rating based on the excellent TPR Coaster Poll. After three days in the park our personal coaster poll emulated the TPR poll somewhat, with a few radical departures from the norm. Here’s our list and ride thoughts:

 

Four-way tie for 1st place - During our time in the park we talked constantly about our ratings and tried a bunch of different tricks to choose a true first place ride (like asking each other “if you could only ride one coaster before you died, which would it be?”, stuff like that), and were still undecided, I think this is a compliment to the park because each of these rides is so radically different that they feel like they should each be in a class by themselves.

 

Steel Vengeance - So yeah, we both came off our first SV ride thinking “Holy Shit, what did I just experience and when can I do it again because that was AWESOME!!”. We had multiple rides every day and tried front, back and middle, each offering a different ride and each a screaming good time. I have huge bruises on my thighs from the restraints (I’m fat, it’s not the ride’s fault) and we experienced a minor but worrying restraint malfunction, but we’d both still jump right back on that bad boy this instant. It’s that good. I’d also say if you can afford FastLane+ it’s worth it just for this ride.

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Maverick - To hell with Disney, because this here’s the wildest steel ride in the wilderness. We loved the smooth and sleepy launch followed by a surprisingly effective first drop and more surprises around every forceful corner. Front row was our favorite, but every row delivered nearly the same exciting punch with no pain due to the vest-style restraints. I can’t believe that wild redhead Chess turned Maverick down, he’s the real deal.

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Millennium Force - This ride truly has everything, comfy restraints, dizzying heights, amazing first drop, floater air, ultra-fast turns and incredible interaction with the park as it travels through a massive chunk of real estate at a constantly thrilling speed. The only thing missing is a FastLane+ entry point that actually saves you a lot of time.

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GateKeeper - This is where our personal tastes vectored significantly from the TPR poll. Kevin and I loved this ride, in fact we probably had more laps on GateKeeper than on any other coaster in the park. We both loved how each seat gave such a radically different ride, the park side has a more intense first drop where the lake side had a couple of really fun disorienting moments. Inside seats offered a floaty feeling of flying, outer seats really messed with my fear of heights and had those great “close calls” with the gates. And it’s just so very pretty. Admittedly things felt a bit skimpy after the mcbr, but not enough to ruin the rest of the ride for us and I give it extra points for ride cars that look like freaking Romulan warbirds. Ride ops were blazing fast.

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2. Valravn - I know dive coasters are one trick ponies, but this one’s trick is ever so fun and this supernatural Danish raven has a few extra tricks up his sleeve with some hanging air on one of the loops and a few other elements that make it a better ride than Sheikra for me. The only downside is that once we tried the front seat, we never went back (or middle).

 

3. Top Thrill Dragster - Nuthin’ but brute power and speed and if you catch it early in the morning a bit of a pause at the top to admire a really beautiful view of the lake. Like Valravn TTD does one thing, but it does it sooooo very well. Front seat is a bit more intense, but we loved back better because of the quicker whip off the top.

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4. Blue Streak - Another one where we veered away from the TPR poll, we loved this rickety little woody. It’s not so rough that you need to brace at every bump, when we rode mid-car you could just let go and enjoy the crazy sensations of the car seemingly trying to rattle itself off the track. Such a giggle!

 

5. Cedar Downs Rac Derby - This was even cooler than I anticipated because the action emulated a galloping horse much better than any old silly carousel. Sluggish ride ops drive me nuts on flat rides, this was no exception, the single operator was decidedly in “relaxed” mode.

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6. maXair - If you love airtime this is really a great ride. It also may not bother folks who hate spinning rides because the action forms more of a parabolic curve than a spin. Quick ride ops.

 

7. Wicked Twister - My first looping coaster was Schwarzkopf’s brilliantly simple Montezooma’s Revenge (I’ve been a Schwarzkopf fan ever since) and I was hoping for a similar experience with this shuttle coaster, but the lack of hang-time air at the end of the spike sort of left me feeling a bit “meh” about it and Kevin said for some reason it made him feel a little queasy (he’s not a fan of spin-and-puke rides).

 

8. Rougarou - I’ll say right now that I hate regular OTSR’s, I’m short so my ears take a beating with the stupid things. Our first ride in the middle of the train left me with red ears and Kevin with a smile on his face. We tried it again the next day, I didn’t wear my sunglasses and also was able to brace my head better using my hands and I’ll say it’s a fun coaster, especially the first half. Kevin ranks this at the 6 spot.

 

9. Cedar Creek Mine Ride - This wasn’t as horrible as the coathanger-and-homemade-brackets-looking-track should have delivered. Actually, it was sort of fun. I might even have rated it above Rougarou if some kid didn’t eat too many crabfries and puke in the train in front of us, leaving us on the brake run for about 15 minutes while they cleaned up the mess. Hey, at least he wasn’t on our train!

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10. CP & Lake Erie RR - Theming! What sorcery is this? We were happily amused and surprised by the entertaining skeletal denizens in the neighborhood of this cute little train. We were also able to verify that if you are able to get on the train just before it leaves you will get to the other station faster than walking.

 

11. Iron Dragon - A roller coaster is supposed to have air time, some forceful elements with both negative and positive g-forces. Neither of the two hanging coasters I’ve ridden have been able to deliver any of these and makes me yearn for a chance to ride the defunct Big Bad Wolf which supposedly got this formula right.

 

12. Raptor - See Rougarou for my reasons for this low rating. Kevin liked it much better, he puts it solidly at #5. I’ll also say this ride reminded me of the Hulk before refurb in that at first the distinctive roar was fun, but after a few days of having to quit talking while walking the front of the park because the thing was too damned loud when passing by was a little irritating.

 

13. Woodstock Express - No surprises here, just a basic little skater for the kiddies.

 

14. Cadillac Cars - Driving one of these is always more boring than watching other people drive. However, they’re running a Honda OHV v-twin side-valve engine and I’m a motorhead so we rode. The covered bridge is cute, the rest of the track is meh.

 

15. Corkscrew - Not last on the list only because it’s too short to cause permanent disability.

16. Magnum XL-200 - Ow, ow, ow, what the F! was that. Ow, ow, ow, brake run.

17. Gemini - The first half was okay, the second half tried to murder us in the worst way possible. Holy hell this sucked.

 

General Park Impressions:

We were amazed at how many families rode everything together. At Magic Mountain I’m typically the oldest person on the big coasters, at CP we’d get off Millenium feeling all badass and then see some 3rd grader and his grandpa get off the car behind us. Maybe it’s because there are so many incredible parks in this part of the country, kids grow up around big rides and it’s just normal to ride everything. On the West Coast it’s not unusual to see 3rd graders cry after riding Snow White’s Scary Adventure.

 

I absolutely love how the coasters interact with guests even when you’re not riding. At many parks the station area and a little bit of track are all you see of a ride until you’re on it, here you are surrounded by track and cars and all the amazing sounds a great coaster makes when it’s going through its run (except Raptor which should be renamed 102dB, The Ride). I was pleasantly surprised to see that Cedar Point doesn’t have nets under the coasters that run through public areas, so many other parks seem to think this is necessary.

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Park Food was better than expected, although the prices were unfortunately as high as expected. We ate twice at Melt and were very impressed with the food and portions were big. The side salad was a good (park) value.

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We were less impressed with Chickie and Pete’s, we left wishing they offered a small size of the crabfries, the description made them sound delicious but a $10 gigantic bucket-o-fries was too much for two of us.

 

Getting to the park is so relaxing and easy. Driving to California parks means navigating crazy So. Cal. traffic and in many cases battling for position at crowded gates before rope drop. Driving to CP means tooling through a little seaside town’s two-lane streets gawking at old houses and century farms and then facing the flag with other exceedingly civil guests while we all stand at attention as the National Anthem plays and Gatekeeper flies by. This is thoroughly awesome.

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The park itself is beautiful and has so many great areas to relax and re-charge. There's shade when you need it, and sun when you want, quiet areas and energetic spaces with tons going on. And rocking chairs. An amusement park with rocking chairs, how cool is that?

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The museum was also an unexpected and wonderful thing to find in a park, it was so fun seeing the mini Steel Vengeance coming to life.

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We were impressed with CP operations for the most part, especially ride ops, which were super fast and impeccably correct - even to the point of being stopped on lift hills twice because an operator saw someone with a cell phone out and walked out to confiscate it (felt sorry for the poor gal who had to run about 3/4ths of the way up the lift hill on Blue Streak to take a phone).

 

We did have a few minor complaints:

Bathrooms - most were fine, but some were downright disgusting, especially later in the day. The ladies bathroom next to Chuck Wagon in Frontiertown was out of TP in a couple of stalls on two separate days. The bathrooms across from Panda Express smelled worse than the horse ride area. Some of these issues stemmed from infrequent cleanings, other issues like broken tile and mildew in corners are maintenance concerns that should be taken care of during the offseason.

 

All-Day Drink plan - If you’re going to have an all-day drink plan and have drink stalls, it would be nice if at least some of those stalls actually stayed open all day. All the drink-only stations were closed by 7pm or earlier.

 

One very minor whine - Why do Maverick and Top Thrill Dragster have a dedicated gift store but Millenium Force gets a tiny little kiosk with a few basic shirts?

 

And...May Flies. We got to learn about these little weirdos after murdering hundreds with our faces on evening rides. If you’re in the park this time of the year ride with your mouth closed once the sun goes down.

 

So, what was our overall takeaway from our first Cedar Point trip? I think the best way to explain it is to say that I don’t own a single shirt from any other park I’ve visited with the exception of one Mickey shirt (I’m decently certain the Mouse won’t let you leave without at least one purchase). I bought FIVE shirts at CP, and Kevin bought two. I’ve basically replaced my casual wardrobe with Cedar Point gear because I freaking LOVE this park. I’ve only been home a day and I want to go back right now.

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It’s amazing what the lines in the rest of the park have been like so far this year. I normally avoid the park like the plague between Memorial Day and August without fast lane, but I’ve been at least once a week since opening day and I only go on weekdays so I can’t say if it’s the same on weekends, but the lines for everything not in frontiertown have been very favorable.

 

I start every day by entering at the resort entrance and walking to SV at the rope drop. Since the two train operation I’ve been on in 20 minutes. then I make my way over to Maverick because by now SV is at least an hour wait, and it’s usually a 5 min wait at Maverick so I get 2 rides before 10. Sometimes 3 depending if the wait is less than 10 min.

 

Now from this point on I estimate that at any given time about 40% of the parks guests are either in line for Vengeance or Maverick. Because every other ride (except raptor early Because it’s in the front) is less than a 15 minute wait unless it’s not running at full capacity or something.

 

The dragster line has been ridiculously short. In fact the last time I was there was Wednesday and it was basically walk on the entire day.

 

ValRavn can sometimes be 15 or less too. And sometimes it’s over an hour.

 

The rest are 15 or less. GateKeeper has been a walk on all season. Millie (world’s best family giga) is a walk on if they are running all 3 trains. The blue train has been down a lot on the days I’ve gone. I don’t know if it’s a coincidence that it just does when I’m there or if it’s been a problem all season or not, but point is, the lines for that and the rest of the park are non existent. It’s been great! And if it keeps up like this I might visit the park 60 times this year instead of my usual 30.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Nice! See this is what I was hoping for, esp in late August, and yes I'll be there on a Friday. Only thing is, I want multiple rides on SV. I imagine lines have been ridiculous. So Im in a bit of a pickle, fork out the near $100 and risk that for most of the park it will be a waste, or dont but then I may get what 2 rides on SV? And that would likely be during early access hotel hours.

I suppose could wait till near then and see what crowds are like BUT I hear fast pass also can sell out and dont want to get shut out. Ugh idk!

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11. Iron Dragon - A roller coaster is supposed to have air time, some forceful elements with both negative and positive g-forces. Neither of the two hanging coasters I’ve ridden have been able to deliver any of these and makes me yearn for a chance to ride the defunct Big Bad Wolf which supposedly got this formula right.

 

I don't know if you've ridden The Bat at Kings Island or Vortex at Canada's Wonderland, but both of them have some nice forces. I do agree that Iron Dragon comes up pretty short in that department, though.

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So, what was our overall takeaway from our first Cedar Point trip? I think the best way to explain it is to say that I don’t own a single shirt from any other park I’ve visited with the exception of one Mickey shirt (I’m decently certain the Mouse won’t let you leave without at least one purchase). I bought FIVE shirts at CP, and Kevin bought two. I’ve basically replaced my casual wardrobe with Cedar Point gear because I freaking LOVE this park. I’ve only been home a day and I want to go back right now.

 

Fantastic trip report! I loved all the detail you included along with some great photos. So glad you guys had such a successful trip!

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11. Iron Dragon - A roller coaster is supposed to have air time, some forceful elements with both negative and positive g-forces. Neither of the two hanging coasters I’ve ridden have been able to deliver any of these and makes me yearn for a chance to ride the defunct Big Bad Wolf which supposedly got this formula right.

 

I don't know if you've ridden The Bat at Kings Island or Vortex at Canada's Wonderland, but both of them have some nice forces. I do agree that Iron Dragon comes up pretty short in that department, though.

My only other suspended is Ninja at Magic Mountain, it's good to know there are a couple others that are fun. It seems like such a cool concept that should result in a good ride.

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Dumb question regarding the the All-Day drink wristband/bottle:

 

Does CP have Coke Freestyle machines that can be used with this or is it just fountain pop? Also can it be used at any location or is it limited?

 

Don't see specific answers on CP's site regarding this....

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16. Magnum XL-200 - Ow, ow, ow, what the F! was that. Ow, ow, ow, brake run.

Tighten the seat belt, not the lap bar.

NOW you tell me!

 

yeah. . that's the "trick". . but now you know for next time!

 

Magnum was easily in my top 5 (haven't ridden SV yet). . once you know the trick. . . those jerk down drops don't hurt your back near as much with a very tight seat belt, low across the upper thighs.

 

GREAT report (and not just because you have my favorite flat - Cedar Downs - so high on your list)

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Dumb question regarding the the All-Day drink wristband/bottle:

 

Does CP have Coke Freestyle machines that can be used with this or is it just fountain pop? Also can it be used at any location or is it limited?

 

Don't see specific answers on CP's site regarding this....

They do have some Freestyle locations scattered through the park, they open late and close early. You can also use it at all counter service locations and some of the sit-down restaurants. Get the wristband instead of the cup unless you have a non-rider in your group to hang on to stuff.

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I love seeing trip reports from first time visitors! CP is my favorite park for all the reasons you listed. Especially glad you went into Dinosaurs Alive since not only are dinos cool, but you get amazingly close interactions with Millennium Force! I'm disappointed at the lack of SkyHawk in this TR, however. Besides Cedar Downs, that is the best flat ride in the park!

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I am also disappointed in my lack of Skyhawk, I have no idea why I didn't take time to ride it.

Definitely give it a shot on your next visit. It was probably in my top-5 rides when I visited a couple of years ago, and I found it to be considerably more thrilling than it looked. Some of the park's best floater air, IMO.

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^Its very rare that FastLane ever sells out. It’s usually just Saturdays in July and during halloweekends. You’ll be fine. Lol

 

Ah good to know. Even plus? Which is the only way to get it for SV I see...

Seriously, I never used fast pass before this year. Ive always avoided it.

 

Yes, I know its an enthusiast thing to knock big parks and fetishize small (dont get me wrong, I love small parks) but fact is the big ones are: big. They provide alot, and CP is the best. The quantity AND quality they offer is untouched. And hell one of their worst rides has been converted into one of their best. And for such a massive park I always thought it felt clean and fairly "nice". Sure its corporate and it doesnt feel like Knoebels, but compared to lets say any Six Flags park....

And people grip about crowds but cmon, there's a reason small parks dont have crowds lol Either go early or late season, or go over 2 days (or fork out a fast pass I guess which is like a 2nd day)

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20180620_182104.jpg

 

This is seriously one of the most beautiful photos I've ever seen of Maverick!! That's desktop worthy!!!

 

Thanks for sharing! Glad you had a good time!

Thank you! It's just done with my S8, but I thought it came out surprisingly nice.

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It’s amazing what the lines in the rest of the park have been like so far this year. I normally avoid the park like the plague between Memorial Day and August without fast lane, but I’ve been at least once a week since opening day and I only go on weekdays so I can’t say if it’s the same on weekends, but the lines for everything not in frontiertown have been very favorable.

 

I start every day by entering at the resort entrance and walking to SV at the rope drop. Since the two train operation I’ve been on in 20 minutes. then I make my way over to Maverick because by now SV is at least an hour wait, and it’s usually a 5 min wait at Maverick so I get 2 rides before 10. Sometimes 3 depending if the wait is less than 10 min.

 

Now from this point on I estimate that at any given time about 40% of the parks guests are either in line for Vengeance or Maverick. Because every other ride (except raptor early Because it’s in the front) is less than a 15 minute wait unless it’s not running at full capacity or something.

 

The dragster line has been ridiculously short. In fact the last time I was there was Wednesday and it was basically walk on the entire day.

 

ValRavn can sometimes be 15 or less too. And sometimes it’s over an hour.

 

The rest are 15 or less. GateKeeper has been a walk on all season. Millie (world’s best family giga) is a walk on if they are running all 3 trains. The blue train has been down a lot on the days I’ve gone. I don’t know if it’s a coincidence that it just does when I’m there or if it’s been a problem all season or not, but point is, the lines for that and the rest of the park are non existent. It’s been great! And if it keeps up like this I might visit the park 60 times this year instead of my usual 30.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Nice! See this is what I was hoping for, esp in late August, and yes I'll be there on a Friday. Only thing is, I want multiple rides on SV. I imagine lines have been ridiculous. So Im in a bit of a pickle, fork out the near $100 and risk that for most of the park it will be a waste, or dont but then I may get what 2 rides on SV? And that would likely be during early access hotel hours.

I suppose could wait till near then and see what crowds are like BUT I hear fast pass also can sell out and dont want to get shut out. Ugh idk!

 

Yeah don’t worry about fast lane selling out. You will need it though if you don’t want to wait the 2 hours for SV. With early entry you will most likely get 1 ride with a minimal wait. By 9:30 the line is usually an hour at the least.

 

 

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GateKeeper - This is where our personal tastes vectored significantly from the TPR poll. Kevin and I loved this ride, in fact we probably had more laps on GateKeeper than on any other coaster in the park. We both loved how each seat gave such a radically different ride, the park side has a more intense first drop where the lake side had a couple of really fun disorienting moments. Inside seats offered a floaty feeling of flying, outer seats really messed with my fear of heights and had those great “close calls” with the gates. And it’s just so very pretty. Admittedly things felt a bit skimpy after the mcbr, but not enough to ruin the rest of the ride for us and I give it extra points for ride cars that look like freaking Romulan warbirds. Ride ops were blazing fast.

 

16. Magnum XL-200 - Ow, ow, ow, what the F! was that. Ow, ow, ow, brake run.

 

Yes! Yes! This gal gets it, on both counts! (And don't start with that "trick" talk when it comes to Magnum... It only makes it marginally better, and if you need a "trick" to enjoy a coaster ride, it's not a very good coaster! But YAY for nostalgia I guess! )

 

And yes, CP bathrooms are definitely among the low-lights of the park experience. I would love to see them them somehow consistently keep them cleaner, and brighter. But then again, they are bathrooms, so they'll never be TOO glamorous!

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Quick Bios:

Me - Big-Fat-card-carrying AARP member and thrill junkie up for any coaster or flat. Oregonian, not the Portlandia kind, I’m from the dry-and-lonely side of the state. Extreme vacation planner (I have spreadsheets and I’m not afraid to use them). Avid motorcycle rider (no I don’t have a Harley). Retired as tech support and web design wench for a motorcycle performance firm a few years ago. Married to a retired UPS guy who is a fiend on two wheels but turns green on anything wilder than Big Thunder Mountain RR. I’ve been to all the major California and Florida parks, that’s about it. My ride list is pathetic, but I plan to work on that over the next few years and I do have the rare and coveted Washington State Fair Classic Coaster cred.

 

Really great report. My only gripe is you should have posted such a good report in its own thread, as its only going to get buried in the CP thread. Oh well, there's always next trip.

 

^ What I find funny about the Magnum hate is we rode it only a handful of times during my one and only visit to the park a few years ago, with no prior knowledge of the seatbelt trick, and loved the thing. Even accidentally sat in the ejector seat. No pain, no thigh crushing, just awesome air and a hell of a classic ride with some incredible views. So it's not nostalgia, and the ride wasn't great thanks to some trick. I think back to it as one of the huge surprises of that trip, and still rank it very high based on just those handful of rides. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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