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California Great America (CGA) Discussion Thread

P. 476: Cedar Fair sells park land, CGA to close within the next 11 years

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^^ I approve! I also approve of the fact that their Sky Ride is one of the few I’ve seen that’s on Fastlane which I’m sure played into your decision.
I wonder if Bill ranks sky rides like the majority of people ranks coasters.
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Anybody else think that it's odd that CF decided to give CGA a coaster so soon after RailBlazer?


I thought they wanted to focus on CW and Carowinds more so than the west coast parks. I believe it's been four years since either of those parks have received coasters. (if you count Wonderland's Guardian as a coaster)

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Cedar Fair has repeatedly said CGA was on the list for major expansion after they reworked their lease with the city. You have to consider that outside of Boomerang Bay the park only received small expansions between Stealth in 2000 (which was removed for the aforementioned Boomerang Bay) and Gold Striker in 2013.


Plus both Carowinds and Canada's Wonderland are receiving major coasters next year.

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I'm one of the biggest fans of the B&M Hypers out there, but I would still love a new Intamin Hyper anywhere! Hopefully, that's the model CGA is getting, though I wouldn't count on it honestly... I think the rumored CF vitriol at Intamin is real! lol

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^Watch it be a B&M.


[Prepares to be flamed for insinuating I might think this is a bad thing.]


I'll gladly take any hyper here in northern california, even an vekoma.


Did you see the proposed Vekoma hyper for energylandia? That coaster looked sick

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^Watch it be a B&M.


[Prepares to be flamed for insinuating I might think this is a bad thing.]



I've got no problems with a B&M hyper, especially if it's similar to Mako. Of course, I'd love to see a West Coast version of Superman:TR (my #1 coaster), but it's been awhile since CF has built an Intamin. All the major coaster additions have been B&M lately, although it's good to see them working with RMC and Gerstlauer. Mack is also making some killer rides right now, so I'd be on board with a Mack hyper as well.

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I'll gladly take any hyper here in northern california, even an vekoma.

Sheesh, everyone, saying that a park is getting a Vekoma ISN'T a bad thing anymore. Can we stop this nonsense please?

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Finally got down to the park to check out RailBlazer on Sunday, and oh man did it not disappoint. What a freakin blast. Got to the park nice and early so I could go straight to RB before the crowds hit and got on the third train in row 8, then went around, waited about 30 mins and the grouper was nice enough to allow me to wait a few extra trains to get row 1. Maybe it's me but other than the first drop, the rest of the ride actually feels faster in row 1.

Statistics don't tell the tale with this thing, the height and speed numbers may not be the most impressive, but it's just stupid fast in the space it takes up. It feels much faster than it is.

Speaking of the space it takes up, the access around the ride is pretty amazing. It reminds me of Silver Bullet at KBF, it's almost like they wanted you to be able to photograph it. Particularly the area underneath the lift and first drop - there's a very nice area there you can walk under and photograph or sit and relax in the shade where it would have been easier and cheaper to just fence it off like SF probably would have done.

Photo TR below, all of these photos were taken with a cell phone with no zoom and none of them were taken in restricted areas!


Empty lot, bright and early, let's do this!


It is a pretty sexy looking ride.


And trains have begun testing!


Quite a few tests, the ride didn't open until almost an hour after gates.


Beautiful wood in the station, one of the nicest stations I've seen. Really impressed.




This crap is already all over the ride queue. I think from now on I'll just write these down and then tag both them and Santa Clara County Sheriff. Maybe they can look these people's social media up or something, I'm really sick of kids vandalizing rides for social media hits.




Goin' up!


So many angles


This was the only blight on the appearance of this ride. Already green nasty looking standing water. Hope they fill this up and make it look nicer soon. Standing shallow water like this reminds me of SFMM.


Not as many hands up as on most rides, this thing is intimidating people!




Right behind the queue now





Check out that hair time!


So many beautiful curves...


Demon photobomb



Comin atcha!





Look at the face in row 1..that's about how fast this feels.









Take the tunnel!


I think this is my favorite photo that I took. Inverted, sun behind, hands in the air!



You can get really close to the drop.


So curvy


Row 2 is clearly loving this.


I think we have an airtime fan.


Waterpark fan in the front row?




What a great addition to the park! RMC has hit a huge home run with this design, these things are going to be everywhere soon and we're all gonna benefit from that!

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After RailBlazer I did spend a few more hours in the rest of the park as well. I haven't had a season pass for a couple years but got one this year as I plan to come back at least once more and visit Gilroy Gardens as well. One thing I loved was that CF now lets you upload your own photo from your PC at home when you purchase the pass, so when you go process at the park, you skip the whole line and they just scan your barcode and hand you the card. LOVE this process. Here are some photos from the rest of the day:


Decided to head from RailBlazer to Gold Striker but due to the hour delay getting RB open, Gold Striker already had a pretty long lines, it was just inside the entrance with the switchbacks getting used. Looks like morning rush from people stopping here first, so I'll come back later.

I rode it later and I have to say, it's getting pretty rough. It might need the GhostRider treatment already.


These are AWESOME. SFMM needs these. They're working, they're ice cold, and they even have a dedicated drink filling tap. And they're all over the park!


And now for "Ouch the ride" aka "Well its better than Vortex"


Looks better than it feels. Surprised how rough it is given age of trains.


Ahh..one of my all time favorites. Love me some Demon.


I literally love this roller coaster.


Loopin' through the trees.


I love the old school 70s/80s look of the station, I hope they never change it. Will have to come back down to ride this during Haunt.


Ok, coming back at 2pm so there's no line, cause thats the only acceptable line length for riding Grizzly.


Time to relax and glide across the park a few times.

















I mean, it's Flight Deck, right?


Have I mentioned I love Delta Flyer? Every park needs one of these. What a fantastic way to cool off, rest, and get across the park at the same time.


Damn..well that's a first, came back at 1:30 and they had opened Grizzly early and it already had a line. Line is just out of the station, but that's probably 45 minutes given the speed of dispatches so no thanks I'll pass.





Also obligatory.



Parking lots pretty full, but crowds pretty manageable.




Until next time!

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^ Nice report and pictures!


I'm heading to this park for the first time in about 20 years the first week of August and have a couple questions based on your report. Does Grizzly always open in the afternoon? And how was the Railblazer line throughout the day? I'm planning on getting to Railblazer first thing and assuming I love it like everyone else I'll get Fast Lane to ride it a bunch throughout the day. I mostly care about Railblazer and Gold Striker, since that will be new for me as well.

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^ Nice report and pictures!


I'm heading to this park for the first time in about 20 years the first week of August and have a couple questions based on your report. Does Grizzly always open in the afternoon? And how was the Railblazer line throughout the day? I'm planning on getting to Railblazer first thing and assuming I love it like everyone else I'll get Fast Lane to ride it a bunch throughout the day. I mostly care about Railblazer and Gold Striker, since that will be new for me as well.

Yes, Grizzly always opens later than the rest of the park. The time it opens is different each day, but they always have the opening time posted in front of the entrance (see my photo) when the park opens. Dispatch times are TERRIBLE, like 5 minutes per train, so a station wait that would be like 5 minutes elsewhere can be over a half hour. So you definitely want to be first on it if you want the credit without waiting for it. The ride is not rough or negative in any way, it's just a flat line, it just doesn't really move the needle. The long dispatch times arent the crew's fault though, it has an absolutely ridiculous restraint system which just makes it take forever, there's not much they can do about it.


Definitely hit RailBlazer first because it will have the most consistently long line throughout the day, though it still wasn't crazy when I saw it. I checked back on it at about 2 in the afternoon and it looked to be maybe 45-60 minutes or so. The queue itself is not very long, based on that it seems like the park is counting on fairly efficient operations. FastLane was pretty much immediately load onto next train all day.


Gold Striker gets really busy in the beginning of the day because it's right in front of the park entrance and people go there early because they see it first. Wait until at least halfway through the day and it should be down to 15 minutes or so if it's not an especially busy day. It has gotten rather rough lately, I actually went straight from riding Gold Striker as my last ride at CGA over to Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk where Giant Dipper was my first ride, and that 1924 coaster was a significantly smoother ride than Gold Striker.

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Personality, I'd be fine with a B&M hyper. They are fun, smooth, full of floaty air, great capacity, and still my favorite restraints of any other coaster type. The park already has an intense beast in Railblazer, so a B&M sounds great!

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That's odd. I wonder why they didn't take the opportunity.

I don't think it's really needed. The portion of the queue you spend the most time in is already shaded. You're not up on the platform for very long.

They did recently paint the walls in the flight deck platform a grey color which is welcomed, as it doesnt radiate heat like an oven as much as the old bare wood walls did.

RailBlazer's queue is almost completely shaded.

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