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Photo TR: PKD in the COLD!!!!


pkdcoaster
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Well since I was pretty sure I had to work on Sunday I went to (P)KD for the last time this season on Saturday. The weather was supposed to be sunny and cool during the day but COLD at night and it was! I was very surprised at the crowds there on such a cool day in Nov. but PKD was doing bring a friend for free this weekend, so I am sure that added a lot of peeps.

Everything was open with the exception of Water rides & Hypersonic operated for a limited time 2-6 (I believe this was due to the Freezing temps)

 

My first ride of the day was Volcano and we were greeted by Ice sickles hanging from the entrance into the mountain (that’s a first for me ) I was on 2nd train out hoping for a rollback but to no avail. (they had the last seats blocked off all day to prevent this IMO)

I hit Flight of Fear next since I had not ridden it since it re-opened and Wow, I have gained some weight this year but not THAT much. For some reason on my first ride I had to have an employee push down the lap bar with their weight to get the seat belt to lock. (WTF! I weigh 180lbs 5’-9”) It was one of the most uncomfortable rides ever. I rode 3 more times and 2 of those times the belt was no issue whatsoever. This adds tremendous wait time to this ride cause so many people are turned away.

 

I then hit Italian Job, which seemed to be running great (I think they amped it up cause of the cold) now this ride is not even into its sophomore season and almost every single speacial effect is NOT working. The only thing that worked yesterday was the fire effects. I rode pretty much everything a couple of times and met my buddy Chris about 4 and took some great sunset pics.

 

I took over 500 pics (I narrowed my favs to 60) since it is rare to have such colorful foliage when PKD is open and a beautiful night complimented by a full moon which made for some great shots. As the weather said, It was going to be below freezing before 8pm. This was easily the coldest weather I had ever ridden coasters in, so we decided to go all out and wait for the front seat of Volcano at 7pm with the tempature a scorching 34 degrees (plus 70+mph wind chill) that was COLD! But Fun. We rode IJ again and I rode DZ a few times and it felt like needles hitting my legs on the drop from my jeans flapping against my legs. After that we closed out the night on Grizzly, I got 2 rides and had an opportunity for a third but I passed due to a killer headache from the cold and Grizz was a little brutal that night. But it was a great time other than the big headache, OK I have bored you long enough, here are the pics.

 

Chris took some Kickass pics as well, so check back for his also if you liked mine.

 

Enjoy, JEFF

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See, its cold

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My Secret Volcano lair

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It is actually an optical illusion

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Back from the dead

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My Tower

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Cool Fall colors

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The Skyline form WAY down Kings Dominion Blvd, I wish I had a better zoom =(

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Wow. I finally see some shots of Shockwave after that helix. PATHETIC! I cant believe that it's just a turn into the breaks...Atleast Cobra has some substance after that hill...

 

 

That being said, nice shots. I love all those Grizzly angles. Makes the ride look great =D

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/\ Grizzly was running great as far as airtime and speed during the day but those last rides I had at night felt bad (There seemed to be a bad spot in the pull up into the 2nd hill/temp. was about 30) I already had a bad headache from riding in the cold (plus it didn't help that every coaster I rode after 7 was in the front seat )

 

But thanks for the compliments, glad ya'll liked them.

 

Yea James, your pic was da bomb, and gave me the idea for that pic, so thanks.

http://img438.imageshack.us/my.php?image=dsc011863lr.jpg

/\ James' pic

 

It also seems like it would be a Cool idea if Intamin Made a drop tower like that while you ride in the lay down position face down to the ground......Sweet!

 

JEFF

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I was there on Sunday afternoon--both Rebel Yell and Grizzly were insane and out of control. I hit most of the coasters with minimal waits, but I skipped Ricochet (fairly long line), Hurler (refuse to wait more than five minutes for this thing), and the Ghoster Coaster. Gotta love that one-train operation on the woodies, right?

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Wow those were some great photos! I really enjoyed the different angles of Volcano! Looks like you had a good time, to bad the weather was so cold.

 

I just have a few questions about PKD. There is a good chance that I will go there next June and I wanted to know how the coasters and flats are. I've heard that Hypersonic and Hurler are rough. Is that true? Also what would be the best strategy for the park on a tuesday, wendsday, or thursday from opening to closing in mid June? Thanks in advance!

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^ I think most people would say PKD has a unique collection of rides. The one downside in my opinion is that most of them are not designed for capacity, so it can sometimes be frustrating if you're there on a crowded day (i.e. most Saturdays from late May through August).

 

Again this is just my opinion, but Hypersonic is pretty much crap. The launch is intense, and moderately thrilling at best - the rest of the ride just seems really awkward, and yes, a little rough. Top it off with a karate chop to the gonads as it crashes into the brakes and just hope it doesn't break down before you make it back to the station, because the restraints will be cutting off the circulation in your thighs by that point.

 

I'll let Jeff answer your question about the park strategy, he has more experience with that. I got some pictures to post.

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Since I wasn't there all day, I came up a few hundred pictures shy of what Jeff was able to get which actually isn't that bad considering the circumstances. Some night shots came out great, so hope you enjoy.

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One last shot. So long Paramount, you've been good to us (sometimes) :-)

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Fountains at night

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Did I mention I think the Eiffel Tower is pretty cool

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Some Triple Spin action. Definitely the coolest flat ride at night

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Cool how it fades as it gets faster toward the bottom.

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My current desktop wallpaper. I love this one

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Volcano + Moon. Unfortunately I don't think it's possible to get both in focus

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Scrambler

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One of the clearest shots I got all night. Colors turned out great

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Tomb Raider is not my favorite ride, but looks cool at night

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mooooooooon. I was shocked that my camera would actually focus on something in outer space

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One of my favorites

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Sunset only lasted for a few minutes, but it made for some cool pictures

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As the sun went down the lighting was perfect for some of these shots of Drop Zone

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Cool shot from the ground. Can you tell the Eiffel Tower is my favorite attraction at the park?

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I thought this was pretty cool that 3 of the 4 supports are in the shot

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Some wide angle for you

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Park Entrance

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Such a cool view from anywhere on top of the Tower. When I get older I'm going to have a 300 foot tower somewhere on my property b/c I love being able to walk around that high off the ground

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Trees around Grizzly were spectacular this weekend

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not such a close race this time

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Best wooden racing coaster in the park!

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^^

Thanks for warning me about Hypersonic. I just want to know what you guys think of the rides there. What's the best seat on each ride, stuff like that and how to go about the park.

 

^

All of these pictures are getting me more excited about my trip next year! Great photos thanks for posting them!

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Great night shots! I also experienced the same thing on FOF. I think it has something to due with the orange seats ? They seemed lower than the blacks ones. I was also stapled and couldn't wait to get off. The best part of the night was the final lap on volcano, as we had the whole train to ourselves.

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Yea Chris, those pics were KILLER!! I love the pic of Grizzly from the tower. Your new Camera is outstanding.

 

As for the best strategy to hit the park.

 

1. Very important to be at the ropes at 10:30am. With my personal experience it is better to go to Volcano first thing since this is the star attraction in the park and always has the longest line. However if you see Hypersonic testing before the park opens you might want to go there first since it usually has a long line due to the hideous capacity and frequent breakdowns but make sure you see it running before they drop the ropes to go into the park cause it rarely opens with the park. FOF is also Very popular so I would hit that right after Volcano in the morning too.

 

2. As for where to ride on the coasters.

 

Volcano- Front seat- no question

Hypersonic- Front seat (although for your 1st time I would advise getting on as quickly as possible)

FOF- Front seat

Anaconda- Front seat

Shockwave-Front seat (more airtime, great view but also alot rougher)

Grizzly- Personally I prefer the front but the back is great too (but be sure to ride in the front of an individual car)

Hurler- Front seat

Rebel Yell- Rear of train has 2 big pops of air Front has 1 (I am split)

Scooby Doo- Back seat! Best airtime on any Jr coaster.

 

As far as operations go...I could not tell you how it is going to be next year with CF taking full control. But this past year Woodies ran 1 train everyday except Saturdays and Steelies ran 2 trains except Saturdays (3 on some)

 

Any other questions, feel free to ask

 

JEFF

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