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Photo TR: Dons Epic Europe Trip

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Awesome pics and report!!! I think my next big trip is to Austria to ride Alpine Coasters. Forget the rest of Europe. I wanna go zipping through the trees on little pipes!!!


On to Smart...


Smart has a release plan for the States, however, the 4two and the 4four are not in the first wave. Instead, they will release a Smart lite SUV because "that is what Americans want." As far as importing Smart cars, there is a company in Santa Rosa that imports them and does the modifications required to meet US regulations. The only problem is Mercedes (maker of Smart with help from Swatch) has said that they will not provide any services for owners of imported Smart cars.


The other question is whether or not Smart will be around long enough to make it to the United States. The Smart division has reportedly never turned a profit and actually looses money on each car they sell. As much as I would love one, I don't see it happening anytime soon.


I desperately want to see one of the Roadsters! I think that is one of the silliest looking cool cars ever.

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Oh man, I was trying to forget about the holiday inn check in. Basically Justin went ape**** on the clerk when he demanded that we all give him all 70 of our passports for a few hours so they can copy the information from everybody. Problem was that when making the reservations he was told it wouldn't be nessisary otherwise we would have brought extra copies to hand them.


I caught the tain end of the altercation on video and snapped a few pics.


Oh, and I just watched the POV's of the Alpine coasters. You guys might wanna send in your DVD preorders now so I know how many to make.


Luckily the native american with the whips wasn't nessisary, but we had him on alert just in case.


Yngve and Phil enjoy the specticle safely from the sidelines.


We decided to make a tense situation even worse by being as much a nusience as possible. Hey, were on vacation right?


Here is the clerk taking the full frontal assult from the European Coaster Club

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Bravo Don!!! What a totally awesome TR!!!


You started off very high in my book with the Rush reference, very cool. I thought that might be the highlight for me, but I was wrong. Some very cool pics and reports. It looks like you guys had a totally awesome time.


Thanks for sharing your trip with us.

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Nice trip report! Question! At Gardaland,did you go on Magic House? I want to know how it is. It's a Vekoma Madhouse like Hex. It was in the giant cartoon tree (Well it's not in the tree,but there's a elevator that takes you down to the madhouse.),did you go on it?

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So in regards to the Smart conversation above, the local paper in Reno had an article about the guy in Santa Rosa who imports Smart cars. It turns out he wants to build a Smart dealership complete with car tower in Carson City, 30 miles south of Reno. He's just waiting for the cars to arrive. Here is a link to the article.

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Wow, I live in Santa Rosa. I should check out the Smart car guy (they were too heavy for carry-on.)


Yes, we did the Magic House! I noticed right away that it was the same ride manufacturer that made Hex. It's still the most convincing haunted swing type ride I'v ever seen. A great step up from the Duch wonder house at Dutch Wonderland thats for sure.


I've never been able to ride the "Houdini's Great Escape's" at the six flags parks because they've never been open. Does anybody know if there are anyother haunted swing rides like Hex or Hagic House?


Oh, and Robb, were already thinking of doing a quick Tokyo Disneyland trip (3-4 days) in November! After seeing how cool Paris was we HAVE to check out TDL and TDS.


Anyway, Magic House was really cool. Actually their whole childrens area was award winning. I don't know how Kings Island won best kids area. Gardaland was like a kiddie Disneyland unto itself. Ghoster Coaster isn't even ever open!


Don "Who has PKI been sleeping with anyway?" Garrison

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They are called Mad Houses' and are made by Vekoma.


Check out this website for details of all the installations in Europe at least.


Most are made by Vekoma, there is one Mack version (at Europa park).


What makes Gardalands even more impressive is that it's underground. Considering if the ride was above ground, they have to dig a fair way into the ground to fit the drum and housing. I have a video of the workings of Hex on my website, they are very impressive and techincal.


I believe the reason why the ones in America closed is that a fault was discovered in that if the fire alarm went off, the ride would stop, but would not correct the drum. Meaning that the doors would not line up, effectively trapping people inside. Quite a bad flaw in the system.

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