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Photo TR: Busch Gardens Europe, August 18-21, 2008


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I had only been to Busch Gardens Williamsburg once, back in 2000. And my girlfriend, Misty, had never been. So it seemed like a good time to mount an expedition.

 

We spent four days there, but I’ve grouped the photos as though making one big loop around the park.

 

And, as anyone who’s been there can attest, it’s a very photogenic park…so strap in, it’s going to be a long one....

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We had a great time. Bye bye, Busch Gardens Europe. We'll be back.

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Aww, time to leave.

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Souvenirs. (Warning: Do not attempt to use this shirt as a park map.)

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They seem to have enjoyed it.

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It goes up, you see some cool fire effects and stuff, and you come back down.

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Escape From Pompeii is kind of like a shorter version of Journey To Atlantis at SeaWorld Orlando.

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The last drop (into a small ravine).

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And a great ride it is...especially at night.

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My favorite part of the ride.

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Not much of the ride...but at least there's a train.

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Oh, there's a train in this shot all right...it's just behind the trees. ;O)

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I think this kid just stapled himself.

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An Apollo ride op assuming the standard BGE greeter position.

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The basketball game makes the Roman soldier sad.

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Time for a spin on the park's train.

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Lunch time. How about some pizza and mozzarella sticks?

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And it made me wish I had a waterproof camera, since it offers some great views of Apollo's Chariot.

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...but it does offer some nice "get people wet" opportunities.

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Roman Rapids is not the most exciting rapids ride....

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More theming confusion, as this part of Italy features rides based on the journies of Marco Polo.

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Coaster nerd.

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...and, um, things.

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...also statues.

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This section of the park offers flat rides and gardens.

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Can you spot the Smisty in this photo?

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Dinner and music.

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Italy has some great architecture.

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The bridge connecting Germany to Italy...just like in real life.

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I really like these rides. I wish some other company and/or park would pick it up again.

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And out over the Rhine.

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Swinging through the village.

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Happily, this idea turned out not to be true.

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I recalled/was under the impression that BBW's first section was difficult to photograph.

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An interesting conglomeration of trackage.

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The Big Bad Wolf sported a fairly long line throughout our visit, despite consistently running three trains.

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Der Wirbelwind...or something. The park map just says "Wave Swinger."

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One nice thing about spending a few days visiting a park is getting to try all of the different eateries.

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This one's much bigger than Tampa's.

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Make of this photo what you will.

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The interior theming's not too bad, either. Except for that pesky television set on the wall. And the fact that you can't hear any of the preshow audio.

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I love the exterior theming.

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And, judged on its own, it is a cool ride. But it does really just feel a bit too much like Spider-Man.

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Curse of DarKastle. I was really happy when Busch announced they were copying Spider-Man.

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Wait, I have to do what now to get out of this section of the park?? (But, seriously, is this whole area just non-wheelchair accessible? Or did I miss something?)

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It's a relaxing ride, and it offers lots of interesting views of the coasters.

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It's a wolf, shoot it!

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While we're in Germany, how about a cruise down the Rhine river?

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The sign is actually for the German Sky Ride station. But it's still a cool photo.

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Land of the Dragons didn't have much to offer us big kids. I prefer Holidog's Funtown.

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No, wait...now it's the awesomest park ever!

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This is the awesomest park ever!

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The drop off of the block brake.

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At about this point, the ride starts to get a little too "snappy" for my tastes.

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Two trains. I'm awesome.

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I really like the first drop and first couple elements.

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Alpengeist's load station.

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Misty is an advanced skier.

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Alpengeist has some great theming, but I'm a little vague about what part of the park it's supposed to be in.

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It is a really fun ride. And the crew was the friendliest in the park.

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I think we rode this, like, five times. Misty really liked it.

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Mighty "Le Scoot."

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Trapper's Smokehouse was good. And the area is nicely themed and all. But, really...Canada?

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Misty presents New France. Which is really just Canada...which is not in Europe. What happened here, guys?

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Griffon popped my collar.

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The splashdown. Again, a great addition, but just not quite as good as SheiKra, in my opinion.

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This turned out really well, I think.

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Yeah, I know...this picture needs a train in it. But the train kind of obscured what I wanted you to see. Yeah...that's it.

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It does liven up this section of the park.

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The holding brake.

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Griffon's very steep lift hill, with Alpengeist in the back.

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I prefer SheiKra, but it's still a great addition to the park.

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...but this is pretty good, too.

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I miss the car ride....

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Hey look, we're in France!

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Hmm...what's that off in the distance?

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This bird really liked my camera.

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A small Aviary. (But the word "Glen" makes it Irish!)

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Irish Wolves (as far as you know).

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And now the European theming starts to get a bit off track, with the animal exhibits.

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Ireland is pretty, but kind of "showy." (As in, it's all shows.)

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Exit theming and 3-D glasses bin for Corkscrew Hill.

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My first ride on Corkscrew Hill. I liked it, but it did suffer from the standard over-abundance of motion simulation.

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Well, that was fun. Now off to Ireland!

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Here you can see all of the thought and care that went into Arrow's design work.

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I recalled a strobe light effect in the tunnel that no longer seems to be there.

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You can certainly get some up close pictures of the thing.

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It's not a bad ride, all things considered.

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Straight up is kind of Misty's signature shot.

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The old, cracksmoking Arrow ride uses its spear to fend off the big B&M guns.

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Beware the pretty flower monster.

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The park is making a big deal out of the Loch Ness Monster's 30th anniversary.

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The Sky Ride climbs over Scotland.

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Foreground flowers are kind of my signature shot. I amuse easily.

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Your host on this adventure...being stupid (as usual).

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Check out the height check phone booth.

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We've made it inside! (And to England.)

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It's a long--but pretty--walk down to the front gate.

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The ticket booth area does remind me a bit of Busch Gardens Africa.

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Notice the lack of a train...and other cars...and toll booth attendants...because we were there THAT.FRIGGING.EARLY.

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Hey, good report from one of my fave parks! You captured a really good feel of the place.

 

Roman Rapids is not the most exciting rapids ride....

Oh, we have to about this one.... I kid, I kid. Yes, there are better rapids out there. Regardless, thank you for including a couple shots.

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Great, no, AWESOME photo TR.

 

I hope you got at least one ride in the back on Apollo's Chariot during your visit. Amazing airtime coming out of the block brake in the back.

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Lots of pictures but I totally didnt notice it because it was very interesting and an enjoyable read. Atleast you had captions to help us who has never been to the park get a really good understanding of it!

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Thanks for all the kind words, everyone. It's always nice to get positive feedback.

 

What camera do you have by the way?

 

It's a Pentax Optio E40. It was the smallest point and shoot I could find that took standard AA batteries. It's not bad. But my approach to photography is just to take a lots and lots of photos, and then pick out the good ones. I think I actually took, like, 1800 pictures to get those 99.

 

I hope you got at least one ride in the back on Apollo's Chariot during your visit. Amazing airtime coming out of the block brake in the back.

 

I think we rode in the front twice, and the back 4 to 6 times. I don't remember, exactly. But I agree that the back has some really great air--even with the two trim brakes they'd added since I'd last ridden.

 

Lots of pictures but I totally didnt notice it because it was very interesting and an enjoyable read. Atleast you had captions to help us who has never been to the park get a really good understanding of it!

 

Hey, thanks. I always think my captions are lame. ("This is a coaster. It's really fun.") But I'm glad you liked them.

 

But, dude, you've never been?? It's not that far from you, and it's awesome! You totally need to go.

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Bonus pic!

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Misty presents New France. Which is really just Canada...which is not in Europe. What happened here, guys?

 

My theory is that they needed a way to justify a log flume and a barbeque restaurant (hey, those French fur trappers and lumberjacks gotta eat). That being said, the flume ride uses lashed-together beer barrels, not logs, so my theory is pretty much nonsense.

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My theory is that they needed a way to justify a log flume and a barbeque restaurant (hey, those French fur trappers and lumberjacks gotta eat). That being said, the flume ride uses lashed-together beer barrels, not logs, so my theory is pretty much nonsense.

 

Well, I appreciate the effort.

 

While I've got you here, Chuck, where is Alpengeist supposed to be? France? Germany? Canada? Switzerland? I just can't figure it out.

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Also, what does this sign mean? Is that, like, some kind of mythological chicken or something?

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^Alpengeist is in Germany, which happens to be located in Williamsburg, Va.

 

The creature above is the legendary Weresquirrel of Bavaria. It is said that under the light of the full moon, some people transform into six-foot-tall, bloodthirsty weresquirrels who will attack you for your nuts.

 

Yes, they want to rip off your nuts!

 

This sign merely designates that this area is a weresquirrel-free zone.

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It's a Pentax Optio E40. It was the smallest point and shoot I could find that took standard AA batteries. It's not bad. But my approach to photography is just to take a lots and lots of photos, and then pick out the good ones. I think I actually took, like, 1800 pictures to get those 99.

 

I do the exact same thing, I end up deleting 95% percent of all the photo's I take.

 

Thanks for the info

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I do the exact same thing, I end up deleting 95% percent of all the photo's I take.

 

Oh...deleting! That would free up some hard drive space, I suppose.

 

I always have in mind that I'll use those old, not-as-good pictures for something. But I haven't, so far.

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Bonus weirdness pic!

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