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Photo TR: From VA to NJ and Back Again


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It's roadtrip time, folks! Erik and Will flew to sprawling Newport News-Williamsburg International on April 24 to start the first leg of a long weekend roadtrip from Busch Gardens Europe to Kings Dominion to Six Flags America and, finally, to Six Flags Great Adventure (with yours truly at the wheel of the mighty Saturn Ion). It was a long haul, but a great time--at least at three out of the four parks.

 

First stop, Euroburg, where Erik needed his Griffon credit, and Will needed, well, everything (it was his first visit). The park was a bit busy for an April Friday, largely thanks to it being School Group Hell Week in Williamsburg. Yes, there were big buses and matching t-shirts all around Colonial Williamsburg that week--and at BGE on Friday. Still, the park handled the crowds quite well.

 

Here are the pictures.

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"I double dog dare you!" More to come.

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We hit the DarKastle line just in time. The queue filled up behind us.

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"Notice how they sprinkle cocaine on the ground to distract the wild squirrel, who may attack and disrupt their picture taking."

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"Here we see two coaster enthusiasts, possibly from the same burrow, in their natural habitat, playing their role in the Wild Kingdom."

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"Welcome! I'm Marlin Perkins, and today on 'Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom,' we go 'In Search of the Wild Coaster Enthusiast.'"

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Here's a bit of Alpengeist themeing I'd never noticed before.

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Everybody should take this leg of the sky ride--it is really quite cool.

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Look! There's the wheelchair seat!

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Here we have Griffon through the sky ride through Will.

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And then you cruise through this thing. Got it.

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Then, somehow, you head up there.

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Then it curves around here.

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Now, let's see if I have this straight. You start here.

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"Hmpf! The fools!"

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"Yeah--waitin' for Corkscrew Hill when they could be in the 'cool-guy single-rider' line for Griffon!"

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Silly people! They could be lined up for this!

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Hmm--seem to be a fair number of simulator enthusiasts in town today.

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Or perhaps you'd prefer a Chia Loch Ness Monster.

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. . . Chia Clydesdale!

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It's springtime at Euroburg, folks! So get ready, get set, to grow your very own . . .

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Meanwhile, back in Euroburg . . .

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OK, this gets my vote for lamest t-shirt ever. Next up will be KD and SFA.

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"Er, maybe we'd like that bull-whacker job better."

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"I'm gonna test the hell outta this flume, you bet!"

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"We'd like to apply for the flume-testing job."

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And Alpengeist through Griffon!

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Griffon through the mist!

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. . . I'll watch from the safety of my blind--cunningly disguised as a green rock!"

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"But as the predator swoops in for the kill . . .

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"Here's brave little fellow! A little water doesn't scare him."

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"Uh oh! It looks like bird of prey has swooped down and taken our little friends! But it's all just part of the natural cycle in the Wild Kingdom."

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"Marlin Perkins here! It seems that our coaster enthusiast friends have migrated elsewhere."

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But thanks to some judicious tree pruning, you can get this shot, too--over by the Festhouse.

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Yes, most everybody has a version of this shot of the Big Bad Wolf.

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Is there corn beef in your future, East Coast Trippers?

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But Nessie is so durn photogenic.

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Yeah, Griffon is bigger and faster.

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"Hah," says Will. "Totally nailed that one!"

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Wait for it . . .

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Cousin Alpengeist says "hey," Yeti Ball.

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If Alpengeist's trains whipped around as fast as the trains on this model, all that would be left of the riders would be their torsos in the OSRs, as their arms and legs would've been torn out by the roots.

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Next up were Kings Dominion and Six Flags America. The plan was to snag the credits for Will at KD as quickly as possible, then stop at SFA while on the way to Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey.

 

It was, indeed, a day of contrasts. KD was humming along pretty well, while SFA was, well, not. At least Will was able to get the credits he wanted at KD (he skipped Taxi Jam and Ricochet), and Erik got his FoF and Taxi Jam credit (he's also been all all versions of Back Lot Italian Job Stunt Coaster).

 

But SFA . . . sigh! I hope it was just opening-day jitters. They did pretty well last season.

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Hah! I told you I'd live long enough to dance on your grave, Hypersonic! Onward to SFA!

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. . . before riding Grizzly.

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Erik takes a moment to reflect and pray . . .

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. . . this is Knott Paramount's Avalanche!

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Yes, despite what the sign says . . .

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"Are you the credit whore, mister? In that case, you owe me a dollar now!"

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"There! We got 'em! We'll turn them loose as soon as we attach our tracking device."

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"It looks like two fine specimens have fallen for our snare. We wait quietly for the trap to be sprung!"

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"Welcome back to Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom! We decided to trap and tag some elusive coaster enthusiasts so that we could trace their movements before the all-important mating season."

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Hmm--Jeff looks like a Romulan in this shot.

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"This way for fudgin' fun on Volcano, folks!"

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"Fudge yeah, we're ready for some fudgin' fun!"

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OK, who's ready for some fudgin' fun at Kings Dominion?

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And now, our brief stop at Six Flags America.

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Will Six Flags get a chance to redeem itself? Stay tuned!

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We waited an hour while Will processed his season pass.

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Yeah, I feel your pain, Taz.

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And it is the best ride in the park.

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Oh well--at least Wild One still kicks butt!

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Here's one of three Batwing trains we saw dispatched during the 45 minutes we waited for Superman.

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Hmm--why do I have this craving for a bacon-and-tomato sandwich?

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"Or not."

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At least we got a free Flash Pass out of it (this was nice of SFA).

 

"Let's use it to ride Superman!"

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"Yay for evac credits!"

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. . . and Superman.

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Will and I amused ourselves by watching Wild One . . .

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"I dunno! I push the button, and it just makes a farting noise."

 

"Sounds like the work of the Joker, Commissioner Gordon!"

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What's this? It looks like the Clown Prince of Crime has had the last laugh on Erik!

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"You're mine at last, Joker's Jinx! All mine! Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha!"

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"OK! Let's go snag some credits!"

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Look! There's the wheelchair seat!

 

I'm never going to live this down...

 

 

Anyways, this is another really great TR, and its definitely raising my level of anticipation for the East Coast trip this Summer!

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SFA was terrible only because it had just opened and there was a huge cheerleading competition going on. I used flashpass on Superman, Mind Eraser, and Roar. Also they were still cleaning up some of last season's problems. By the time they have the East Coast Trip, the park should be ready

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Six Flags did, indeed, redeem itself in New Jersey. Great Adventure was the exact opposite of SFA the evening before--friendly staff, excellent operations (such as running three trains on Nitro, even though the crowd was pretty light), and, of course, El Toro--and Larry!

 

This was my second visit to the park, but it was Will's first time, and Erik has the misfortune of visiting three days before El Toro opened. (He needed the Runaway Train credit, too.) So, we got multiple rides on El Toro and Nitro (the park's two best rides), made a good lap around the park, and even checked out the parachute drop--an excellent day (if a bit chilly at times).

 

Here be the pics.

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Upon further reflection, I do think it's a better ride than Apollo's Chariot. More to come.

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Nitro was running great.

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Time for our accidental ERT session on Nitro. Three trains, no waiting!

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"So, don't pull a boner! Come to Skull Warehouse for all your warhousing needs! We now return to this TR already in progress."

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"We make no bones about it! We want your business!"

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And now a word from our sponsor. "Hello folks! Welcome to Skull Warehouse!"

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I like the old Parachute Sky Jump at Knott's better, but this is actually a pretty pleasant ride--but it was rather cold up there.

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I decided to salute our proud fighting men and women at Edwards Air Force Base.

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Darth GASM says, "Join me on the Arrow side, Will."

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Ka got over itself and started working. But El Toro still craps bigger than this thing. We sat toward the front, and it was still pretty shaky.

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My God! It's Darth GASM!

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Will detects a mysterious disturbance in the Force.

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But because we rode Toro first, Ka's feelings were hurt. It went into "emo mode" for about 15 minutes. (They even played sad violin music in the station.)

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Team Larry heads for Kingda Ka.

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"Mi es El Toro!" (Or something like that.)

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And it's Erik's favorite now, too.

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Yeah, it's definitely my favorite woodie in the U.S.

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"We are El Toro! And we are Seis Flags!"

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. . . straight to El Toro!

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Go Team Larry . . .

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Yes, guys--El Toro is over there!

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Here's the last batch of picture from an awesome weekend! I had a great time with Erik and Will--and our "special guest stars" Jeff and Larry.

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Thanks for reading!

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. . . we take one last look at El Toro, because we all love it so.

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And as we bid a fond farewell, to Six Flags Great Adventure . . .

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But it does give you a good view of what's left of Chiller.

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Yeah, it was kind of cold up there.

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And now it's time for Nicole's most favoritest ride ever.

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. . . I can understand why there's always a couple piles of kitty litter or sweeping compound near the station.

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You know, after riding a couple of these B&M flyers, . . .

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Looks like Superboy could use a new jacket.

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. . . when they could be lining up for this?

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. . . for this, . . .

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OK, why are all these people lining up . . .

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. . . Medusa!

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Well, here's Runaway Train in all it's Arrowness. It's actually kind of fun, and it's near . . .

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"For thar be credit whores off the port bow!"

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"But keep a weather eye open!"

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"Ahoy, me hearties! It be time fer a ride on Blackbeard's Lost Treasure Train!"

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Is it just me, or does Erik look like a cardboard cutout in this picture?

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"No time to lose, Robin! I have a date with Catwoman tonight!"

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"Holy emasculation, Batman!"

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What's this? One of Batman's balls, left on a random rooftop? Could this be the work of that crazed conniver of conundrums, the Riddler?

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Yes that is me in the TPR shirt behind you guys. Coasterguy was there that day but we ran away from him when he was waiting for skyride. We still beat him to toro lol. That is my friend next to me who later threw up after riding GASM 8 times in a row. I won that competition. Glad to see you guys like the park.

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^So his stomach spasmed on GASM, eh? One ride on that thing was enough for me, but Great Adventure has a great collection of coasters.

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Great Photo TR! I was there that day too! If you look in the picture of you guys on Skull Mountain, you can see someone with a TPR shirt on behind you guys. Thats my good friend! I was on the train just before him, lol.

 

Glad you like Toro!

 

Yeah, we saw several people in the park wearing TPR shirts that day.

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^Because I didn't take as many pictures at KD (or SFA). I just didn't pull out the camera as often.

 

And because BGE and SFGrAd are more-awesome parks.

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