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Six Flags Great Adventure Photo Updates and Discussion!

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Edit: Rather than create a new thread for trip reports every week or few days, I'll just post them in this thread for you to view. You can put any general questions or discussions about Great Adventure in this thread as well! I and any other members will be glad to answer them!


Trip Report 5/10/08



Kingda Ka- 2

El Toro- 2

Batman- 1

Nitro- 1

Medusa- 1

Skull Mountain- 1




I took my first trip to the park yesterday after getting off work. The sky was overcast, but it didn't rain at all. I used the season pass that was mailed to me and got in quickly. After getting into the park, I went over to Season Pass Processing to get a new pass with a new photo. It has "Premium Pass" printed on that but I'm still not sure what's so "Premium" about it. The processing center was very efficient with all of the terminals having someone and they got me in and out quickly. I then decided to head over to see the progress on The Dark Knight.


The big grey box is sort of an eyesore in comparison to the mangled steel of Chiller, but from what I'm hearing, the inside is awesome. They have most of the queue finished up, still putting up railings and plants, but not much more to do. They have begun painting and right now they're only painting sky and no buildings. I thought they may not be painting the buildings at all, but I saw someone holding the paint plan and it clearly showed the buildings. I decided to make Batman my first coaster of the year. Batman is a great ride, I just wish they would've kept the theming of the junkyard and cop car, but they had Danny Elfman's score blaring in the station and the lights on in the station as well. Batman is one of my favorites, if it wasn't cloned so many times, I think people would rate it higher.


After getting off Batman, I headed over to my #1, Nitro. Nitro had a line only at the stairs because of an awesome crew and 3 trains running with no stacking. They were going at an insane pace. As soon as one train dropped off the lift, they dispatched the train in the station with the other train just coming into the break run. Very impressive and props to the Nitro crew. I walked around the park. The lack of flats is very noticeable, people wondered what happened to the Flying Wave (swings) and why there were so many smoking sections.


I walked through the park, everything was clean and staff was friendly every where I went. I saw people asking staff questions and they all answered them with a smile on their face. I walked down by the Lakefront since there were no crowds down there and towards Medusa. Runaway Train may have been running 3 trains, but I wasn't really paying attention.They paved a huge area where the Teepee used to be, I still think a drop tower should go there. Medusa was running 3 trains as well and also firing trains out of the station as well. They had a recording in the station that gave instructions about the restraints and no loose article policy and it's status as first floorless coaster. Oh, and don't forget, if it's not Heinz, it's not ketchup! The op had to say it after every train unloaded, and the people on the train loved to say "It's not ketchup!" so the Heinz corporation must be ecstatic. Medusa is really looking shabby though, it needs a new coat of paint ASAP.


I headed over to El Toro by way of the bridge, which got new lights by the way, and saw it running very well. The crew was really moving fast, to the point where the train would dispatch out of the station as the other train just hit the brake run. Rode in the back seat, airtime galore and still smooth as glass. Rolling Thunder was only running the Right side, but I didn't feel like getting rattled around. I headed into the Golden Kingdom, and stopped by the tiger exhibit. All of the tigers were asleep though, so I moved over to Kingda Ka. It was running all 4 trains and really working well, until I got on. I sit down on the orange train and get locked in. Unfortunately, the trains were out of position and they have to do a station reset. It takes 10 minutes, but we get launched and make it over the top and back to the station. It was very very shaky and unenjoyable, I wish they would find a way to make it smoother. Some people I knew saw me in the station before I launched and they laughed at how my long hair was blown back and standing up. I got off and yelled "We need 1.21 jigawatts of electricity!"


I walked around with my friends for a while, we rode El Toro together and then went to get something to eat, settling at the Boardwalk and getting Butterfly fries. Someone thought it would be a good idea to do the teacups so we did and spun the world around us. We stumbled out and then proceeded to Movietown.We stopped off at Skull Mountain, which had its original queue music going and music on inside the building. There were lights illumintaing the huge skull and pumpkin on. I think the only way to make it better is to add some fog. We went and did the new indoor mini-golf. It was 9 holes and pretty cheesy, but it kept us entertained. I then split off from the group and went over and got another ride in on Kingda Ka. I got on the Blue Train but it too was rough. I decided that I was too tired to really do much else. I decided to take a ride on Scream Machine, believing it wouldn't be too rough. I got up to an empty station and people coming up asked if the ride was closed. I said "No, it's just old, unpopular, and rough" I rode in the front row and got knocked around pretty good. The park was beginning to empty out, but my legs were hurting and I was tired, so I left.


Overall, despite what many people are saying, I think the park is in good hands. Granted that they have taken many rides out, I still had a good day regardless. The staff was efficient and friendly, I couldn't find trash laying anywhere, Security was taking line jumpers out at El Toro, and the line's weren't too bad. Not once did I hear anyone complain about the locker policy. Everyone used them and didn't fight the people who told them to use it. It really does make unloading and loading faster. I brought cargo shorts and was able to fit my hat, wallet, keys, cell phone, camera, and extra batteries, so if you don't want to use a locker, wear cargo pants or shorts.


Well, on to what people want to see, the pictures!


Pulling into the parking booths, I saw Ka was running


I parked right next to Scream Machine


Hmm, something's missing


There, that's better


No train in this shot because it was broken down


Houdini can't escape from being closed


What happened to the Flying Wave? Now only 3 people can go on it?


Movietown is ruled by B&Ms


But Mack is going to change that


They've begun to paint the facade, which I hope lasts long.


They've landscaped Chiller's old area nicely


What's left of Chiller is just chillin


Though not having that tangled mess of steel gives a nice view of Nitro


They now have people our front of coasters to make sure you're tall enough and that you have no loose articles


Batman was running great


Oh boy, two trains in one shot! Give me an award


How are people scared of this


Skull Mountain turned 12 and is too old to cry its waterfalls. In one more year, Michael Jackson will lose interest in it


And parking is still 15 bucks?!


Cloudy blue skies


Still some work left to be done before Thursday's opening


Big, open spaces


Big, open spaces


Everyone just wants to see El Toro


Obligated to take this shot


Some air here


Keep on rollin, rollin, rollin


A little paint and people will think it's new


A drop tower, anyone?


Fine, more El Toro


Here's the other Intamin in the park


The public loves it




Hey look, El Toro!




The Dark Knight opens Thursday


Indoor Mini golf!


It may not be a great ride, but man does it look cool


I leave you with a shot of Dream Street


For all of the pictures I took of the Dark Knight and its area, click here




Thanks for reading!

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Were those a bunch of employees riding in the back seat of El Toro?


Either that, or someone must be really color blind in picking out their clothes!


There was actually this whole group of children wearing these shirts. Every time I looked at them it gave me a headache. With them all around the park, it was harder than usual to spot an employee.


^^The Gotham skyline will be painted on, they're just painting on the sky first. Here you can see the paint plan in the hands of a worker.


The Chiller station is just staying up, though there are no plans for it at this time. Think of it as a scenery element.


^^^Indoor mini-golf is located in the old Castle Arcade. They have this big mega-putt game outside of it. If you play the game, you get a free round of mini-golf.


Thanks for the comments!

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I heard before that when you were adding all these flats, they said something like we are adding flats to relieve the lines. Now, they are taking a lot of the flats out. I think the flats don't help that much because some of the flats just aren't that great.


If the flats were better, more people would go on them. The swings at my park are a walk-on even if every ride is really crowded. The line isn't long enough. Keeping flats for a very long time, and not replacing them is a bad idea. You can't solve the line problems for coasters if the flats just aren't worth going in line for.


I think this was an awesome photo report, and I like how you took the picture of the guy with the prints in his hand. Good luck to the park for the ride being open in two days.

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I'd normally say that shows are the best solution to long coaster lines, but SFGAD HAS shows, and probably the best a Six Flags park can produce. I say just don't add flats, add thrill rides as alternatives to coaster waits being excess of two hours... Huss Top Spin anyone???


Most of our major show venues are empty like the Batman Stunt Arena, Showcase Theater, and Great Lake Grandstand. The only places with shows are the Temple of the Tiger in the Golden Kingdom,the Dolphin show in Fort Independence, and music concerts in the Northern Star Arena, that's it! They have little sideshows around the park like at the Gazebo, but not a major show. The only time there are shows in these places are during Fright Fest.


But, the park will have the new Glow in the Park parade to address this lack of major shows and I hope that it is received well and is maintained through the years. Some Huss rides would be nice, but we already have a Top Spin!



The park has an awesome coaster lineup, but it needs more flats and shows to compliment it and round out the park. A drop tower being one of them since we lost Freefall. Don't get me wrong though, I'm very satisfied with how management is improving the park and I'm sure that they are planning to address these concerns.

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Dark Knight Opening and Park Update 5/15/08!



The Dark Knight-3



Kingda Ka-1

El Toro-2


Hard Rockin' Skull Mountain-1


Runaway Train-1


I took another trip out to the park today to see The Dark Knight open! I got to the park around 9:30 and saw a ton of buses in the parking lot, it was student council day! So there were a lot of students in the park all day. At 10:30 the ribbon dropped and word had got out that the Dark Knight was opening today, so there was a rush of people over to Movietown. We arrived to find a chain holding us back and were told the Public wouldn't be allowed to ride until 11:20. We sat through the Media Event and watched as Mark Kane opened the ride. I had to sit down due to medical reasons, so I told security and they let me sit on the bench in front of the chain. My friend Josh, who was invited to media day, came over and told me to go with him, so I did.


I'll split this into three sections:


The Outdoor Queue

Despite there being no buildings on the exterior of the walls (I really hope they add them soon, plain blue sky just doesn't cut it, I want to see Gotham City!), the queue was very spacious and VERY landscaped. It was nice to look at and had a switchback to accomodate the crowds.


The Preshow

When you reach the Gotham City Rail building, you enter and find a terminal for Gotham. It has a big screen with a news report playing and two screens scrolling updates from the city. You see a newspaper dispenser with the headline "CITY AT WAR" next to you and a ticket booth. They even have a fake rat in there! You sit through a news conference with Harvey Dent, who goes through his plan for bringing justice to the mob and he starts talking about Batman at which point, the feed gets interrupted and the Joker laughs and you see a very quick and random assortment of clips flash on the TV, ending up with the words "WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?" on the screen and HAHA all over the walls. You then see flashing lights and enter into the station: The preshow is my favorite part of the whole ride.


The Ride

You enter into the station and see a bank of screens and telephones, joker cards all over the place. They have a neat monitor towards the end of the walkway that superimposes a clown mask over your own. The cars never stop moving, and loading and unloading moves fast. You get into your Gotham Rail car ( which is quite comfy) and head up the lift. Flickering lights are all that you see, except for one of the hairpin turns that sticks out over the lift. You drop off the lift and go past the Gotham times building, then down a corridor with HAHA scrawled all over. you then see joker's goons on screens and then you see them with an RPG and a Gotham Police Station in flames(not real though). You drop down a level and go past a truck that has strobes and gunfire sounds. Then you go over the hills and there isn't much more after that. All in all, it's a pretty good mouse ride and I'm glad Great Adventure put it in, I just wish there was more theming in it, but I'm satisfied with the amount in there. Overall, the whole ride/preshow is 8/10 in my book. I rerode it 3 times throughout the day and caught most of what was to be seen. It's great for older kids and families and what Great Adventure needs to appeal to.


After leaving the Dark Knight, Josh introduced me to Park President Mark Kane and I talked with him. He's a really nice guy and he's doing a great job at turning the park around. He asked me if I missed Water Effect and with how good TDK came out, I really didn't. If you ever see him around the park, be sure to stop him and say hello, he's really good to talk to and he's willing to listen to your opinion! Josh, his father, and I headed over to Nitro and rode. Always a great ride, I'm a sucker for floater which explains why it's my top coaster. After that, we headed to go to the skyride, but it broke as soon as we got there. We headed down Dream Street and then I split off from Josh. I went over to El Toro and grabbed a ride in the back, full of ejector as always!


After that, I headed over to Kingda Ka and found it broken down and only running one side of the station. I headed over to Superman since I hadn't ridden it yet and got on in the 5th row. I will say that Superman is fun, but I just want to go on a bigger flyer like Tatsu. I headed over to Scream Machine to find all the trains sitting on the break run and in the station, so it was broken. I decided to head to Kingda Ka and try to get on again. I got on the Green train in the 4th row and it rattled around a bit, but it was still a pretty good ride otherwise. I went over to Medusa and got on the second row, really smooth today! The queue was packed so you know the park was really crowded!


So I head across the park, crowds everywhere, but happy crowds I might add! Everyone was having a good time despite the hot weather and operations were going well, Scream Machine was back operating again, but I saved my neck the pain of riding. I decided to head over to TDK and get another ride on TDK. As I'm heading over, I run into Jay (ElToroExtreme). It seems Jay was supposed to be part of media day but had something come up, but that fell through, so he was at the park by himself, so I told him to tag along with me!


We went over to TDK and went into the awesome preshow again and went through the ride a second time. I like Batman alot so I think this coaster is cool and perfect for the little ones who are still watching Batman and Justice League. After that, we head over to the always intense Batman and get on second row. After Batman we went onto the Skyride and decided to do RMT for the credit. It smashed my arm pretty good, but I'll live. We went onto El Toro and got on the 5th car, always tons of Ejector air.


We started off to go to TDK another time as I had to go soon. Jay realized he lost his wallet, so we went to lost and found but it wasn't there, so we went back into the park and rode TDK again and from there I had to leave, so I bid farewell to the park and I hope to be back there soon, maybe even in its employment


I'm sorry, but I have to post the pictures in a little bit, I have to resize them all!

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^Yes, There is a Batman statue on the Gotham Times rooftop, but you go by it so fast that you may miss it the first time around.


Uh-oh, pre-packaged 2-hour lines


Steel skyline


Today's the day!


No buildings on the wall, I hope they put them up!


G4 was there reporting, of course they taped me shouting "Dark Knight WOOOO!" I'm sure when I run for some political office they'll use it against me


I see you Dainan


Huge crowd restrained by a small chain


All the hubbub


Park President Mark Kane


Streamers that fell onto the crowd




Random Nitro Shot


Going into the Preshow


Inside the Preshow room


The newscast that's playing




Last year's lost and found loot is now theming


The exit to the station platform


Ticket booth, look a rat!


Harvey Dent


Joker leaves his mark


He really went to town


Elevator to hell?


Josh say "Look, theming!"


Sure enough, there was theming


Old Chiller switches?


For a while, no mask would show on my face, guess it's scary enough as it is!


Wayne Knight sponsored this station


Joker Cards were everywhere


See? that won't last long with the GP


Sorry for the blur


Coaster Car


They're in constant motion so don't trip!




Ride's exit


If you look up, you can see the ride!


Papers outside by the photo booth


I vill rule you all, any qvestions?


The public fills the queue


And the rest of Movietown


Hardcore landscaping




That's all of the Dark Knight pictures, I'll post the general park photos in another post

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The rest of the photos!

For some reason, I feel compelled to take a picture of Batman and include it in every TR I do. Oh tradition!


I think it should open earlier than Memorial Day since it was so hot today under the sun!


Numero Uno, on my list


Floater Air is the little bro of Ejector, it just wants the same attention!


Look, Hillary Clinton's Happy Time Campaign Coaster!


It suffered a real blow to the head though, I hope it doesn't affect its momentum




Benches aren't a good sign, remember when they benched Chiller?




They should really prune back that tree, those people came out with branches and leaves in their hair




The glory of Intamin Wood


Go ahead, soak in its brilliance




RT right was disabled


Who cares, El Toro is open!








Air? Sure, let's say there's air


Awful, I know someone agrees with me!


Back to perfection


This is not your day, Superman!


All about the Batman


Go fly away to your arctic fortress!


I think I hurt his feelings, cause it broke down after these pictures were taken


Stacking, 2 FLAGS!


But they're running three trains?


Ahh there's your problem




Hey, Superman Returns!


Hey kiddies, come into the dark tunnel, you'll meet a guy named MJ who wants to ride with you!


Big Grey Box?


This looks like last year


More Intamin goodness


I liked the way the Parachutes looked


60 FLAGS!!!


3 FLAGS!!!


I think Batman is eyeing me, he struck a mating pose


Indoor Glow in the Dark Mini-Golf, AWESOME, 6 FLAGS!


Jay looks happy, don't he?


And a skyline shot to end it, thanks for viewing!


For more photos and coverage of The Dark Knight, vist GAdv Online to see Josh's photos!


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At 2pm when I left the parking lot was close to half full not including all the buses. The park was very busy and even with many of the coasters running at max capacity lines were fairly long.


I am glad to see that after the inital rush of people complaining about the ride yesterday people are starting to finally "get" that what was accomplished was exactly what SF wanted.


Mark Kane was great to speak with yesterday. It was the first time I was able to intorduce myself to him. I never knew he was at the park from 76-87. We spoke at length about the golden years of the park and how significant the changes they are making today brings them back to a period before the park became crippled from disaster after disaster during the mid to late 80's.


Good times yesterday and I am definately hoping that when we return some more flats I can be 100% proud again to have GADV as my home park.

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Looking at the last picture of the lot, it would appear the park is dead. I guess that's because it was all schools there today


With the look of the lines in some of those shots, I would say that it looked pretty crowded. That is a really big parking lot, and just a half full one means a pretty packed park.


Very nice report on The Dark Knight.

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Kingda Ka was only running 2 trains, which was kind of surprising as the park was really really crowded with all of those school children all over the place and it being TDK's opening day.


Advice on the Dark Knight, it IS a wild mouse but enclosed and with theming! People have come out of it disappointed because they were expecting an El Toro in a box, which its not. That being said, this wild mouse is insane as I don't remember the trims being on at any point. It really whips you around the turns and you even get a little ejector air coming down one of the hills.

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