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Six Flags Darien Lake (SFDL) Discussion Thread


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If staffing is an issue, you think they'd want to have staff at Ride of Steel since it's their marquee ride yet Sk610 saw it closed and only make 2 test runs.

 

Key word in my post was "some"

 

Ride of Steel is a major attraction for the park and I agree that that should and probably is one of the rides put as a higher priority to stay open when there are staffing issues. This closure is most likely due to a mechanical issue as ROS is notorious for breakdowns, and if they sent up test trains, it would be to test it to make sure it is safe. They wouldn't send test trains if it isn't going to operate due to staffing anyways.

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^ROS was open nearly all day yesterday, it closed early in the day but it seems they've isolated the issue and can solve it quite quickly. They pulled the cover off a restraint and lubed the sensor that tells the train how far down the lapbar is, so it seems to be an issue related to that. You should be good to go today!

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After getting back from 6 hours at the park today, I can say that I have never been as angered by the way DL is run than I was today. CONSTANT rides breaking down, one after another. Silver Bullet was down all day, no surprise there, Mind Eraser went down for 30 minutes, then Pirate went down and never reopened, Giant Wheel was down for an hour as well as Motocoaster and Haymaker. Also, some rides really are starting to need multiple trains again. An hour + wait for Viper , Moto, Mind Eraser and Ride of Steel was extremely annoying knowing the fact that those waits could have been cut in half, running two trains the way that they used to.

 

Ride operations weren't the only issue. The entire park is looking extremely run-down and neglected. Peeling paint, half-painted coasters, and cracked, uneven blacktop EVERYWHERE. The park also needs to seriously take a better look into the issue of smokers... everywhere in the park, you can see or smell cigarettes. I would really not like to breath in second-hand smoke wherever I am at Darien Lake. This place seriously needs a better maintenance budget, and to stop being totally neglected by their parent company, because it appears, to me anyways, like the place is just getting worse every time that I pay visits for the last few seasons now. Even my brother who knows nothing about roller coasters or theme parks and hasn't been to DL since May of 2016, had noticed all of the absolutely pathetic operations of this park.

 

As much as I would love to see a new coaster (or at least something new) next year, I think it would be best for them to just hold off on that and improve on what they already have. They have a good set of rides and coasters, including a fantastic Intamin hyper, and seeing improvements, such as paint on coasters and infrastructure, two trains running on at least ROS and Viper, maybe Motocoaster, and better preventative maintenance for rides next year might be worth waiting another year for a new major attraction. I'm sorry for another rant but this place is just seeming to get dramatically worse than it has ever been.

IMG_2523.thumb.PNG.d526c6caef7467958423806243904cdd.PNG

Trust me, the line was worse before this picture was taken. Oh, the joys of one-train operations ;)

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I think y'all make it sound worse than it really is as far as appearance. If you ask me, the park looks fine appearance wise. Its Buffalo... pavement is going to crack no matter what. The blacktop is resealed yearly, its not like theres potholes everywhere. And the half painted coasters (ROS and ME) have been that way for years, its not something new.

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I think y'all make it sound worse than it really is as far as appearance. If you ask me, the park looks fine appearance wise. Its Buffalo... pavement is going to crack no matter what. The blacktop is resealed yearly, its not like theres potholes everywhere. And the half painted coasters (ROS and ME) have been that way for years, its not something new.

 

One would expect that with each new season you go in expecting improvements that should or could be addressed as far as in operations and aesthetics but yet again seems to have taken a turn in the wrong direction. Lack of new paint and cracked pavement may just seem cosmetic to some but to others it conveys an image of the owners not taking care of the park. Nothing quite like seeing rust develop on coaster track.

 

Sad to hear the operations have continued to be lackluster this year. It doesn't help that the park has been run by at least three different operators in a ten year span. I take the new owners are just as tight with the wallet at CNL was.

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I think y'all make it sound worse than it really is as far as appearance. If you ask me, the park looks fine appearance wise. Its Buffalo... pavement is going to crack no matter what. The blacktop is resealed yearly, its not like theres potholes everywhere. And the half painted coasters (ROS and ME) have been that way for years, its not something new.

 

One would expect that with each new season you go in expecting improvements that should or could be addressed as far as in operations and aesthetics but yet again seems to have taken a turn in the wrong direction. Lack of new paint and cracked pavement may just seem cosmetic to some but to others it conveys an image of the owners not taking care of the park. Nothing quite like seeing rust develop on coaster track.

 

Sad to hear the operations have continued to be lackluster this year. It doesn't help that the park has been run by at least three different operators in a ten year span. I take the new owners are just as tight with the wallet at CNL was.

 

Having been to the park multiple times this year, the doom and gloom about aesthetics is IMO mostly unfounded. Other than Viper's station house, which I havent been in this year, I have not seen any poorly maintained buildings or pavement that others mention, and im a pretty OCD person.

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I think y'all make it sound worse than it really is as far as appearance. If you ask me, the park looks fine appearance wise. Its Buffalo... pavement is going to crack no matter what. The blacktop is resealed yearly, its not like theres potholes everywhere. And the half painted coasters (ROS and ME) have been that way for years, its not something new.

 

One would expect that with each new season you go in expecting improvements that should or could be addressed as far as in operations and aesthetics but yet again seems to have taken a turn in the wrong direction. Lack of new paint and cracked pavement may just seem cosmetic to some but to others it conveys an image of the owners not taking care of the park. Nothing quite like seeing rust develop on coaster track.

 

Sad to hear the operations have continued to be lackluster this year. It doesn't help that the park has been run by at least three different operators in a ten year span. I take the new owners are just as tight with the wallet at CNL was.

 

Rust on the track? I’m assuming you’re referring to Mind Eraser. Let’s put it this way. Mind Eraser isn’t showing rust because it’s been neglected for 20 years. It’s showing rust because they sprayed the track to prepare it for repainting a couple years ago. And they were in the process of repainting the Coaster (as you can see for yourself) until CNL deemed other projects more pertinent and pulled funding from that project. That’s why the ride looks the way it does. It’s not the best case scenario for the Coaster but again, it was in the process of getting the care it needed before a company that now no loner operates the park decided to pull funding, stopping the project dead in its tracks. Keep in mind since 2010 they have repainted Boomerang AND Viper. The reasoning for not painting ROS is pretty simple, that ride isn’t as easily seen by the GP from inside the park. It can afford to fade a little more before it’s in “desperate” need of a fresh coat. Keeping in mind the crazy large price tag on a project like that, it’s not really surprising that it hasn’t been done yet. Also. They invested in a new train for the Ride of Steel. A great thing to do- but it came with a hefty price. They also refurbished both of the operable Viper trains in time for its anniversary this year. Sure, the station could use some work, but at the end of the day does it really make or break the coaster? No. No it does not.

 

As for two train operations. Be honest. The park doesn’t need them. Sure I’d also love them, and lines would fly there if we had them again, but most of the time, the park can run just fine with one train on all of its coasters. Considering they’d have to fork out another MILLION dollars for a second ROS train, and however much more for a new Motocoaster train and mind Eraser train, that’s a large sum of cash. A large sum this park just doesn’t have right now. Plus. What do we think the guests would rather have? Two train operations or steady investments to the rest of the park? Rip curl Racer, Brain Drain, Rolling Thunder, Rowdy’s Ridge, The Boardwalk, plus the new lasershow revamp in 2013 and 2016, these are things that the GP can and will see as a new fun reason to come to Darien Lake. Not a second train on an SLC. You know?

 

This year the park made several upgrades. The new games, Darien Lake Photos, as well as the addition of Day/Season Photopasses similar to Cedar Fair’s FunPix, and the DareDevil Pass add on. These along with the Play Like a Kid / Play Like a Kid promotion are pretty great enhancements for the park to make, especially during a year of transition. It’s not like they left the park to die this year. They’re doing what they can. Plus, we already saw that EPR is willing to spend the money and take the time to try and fix these rides and get them moving again. Twister was SBNO for what, 3 years? It opened again to the public this year! Plus they have been working on Silver Bullet and Thunder Rapids as much as they could have to get the rides going. Just because it isn’t running when you’re there, by no means implies that it’s done for. These are mechanical creations. A lot of them are prototypes or installments from companies that don’t exist anymore. They’re becoming more and more expensive to maintain. Yet, the park is still trying. And that to me says something in a much more optimistic light than what people here have been making it out to be all season.

 

In the end, I understand that Darien Lake is not the best park in the world, but looking at what they’re doing, and how they’re trying as best they can (in my opinion) to get back on their feet, especially with the throws of having yet another new owner. I’d say they’re doing a fine job.

 

Sincerely,

 

Steve “Will You Just Give The Park a Break Already” Zehler

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Here is my trip report for my one visit to Darien Lake. Sorry about the lack of photos, I guess I just didn't think of it.

 

I went to the park for the only time this year (going back to college in only a few days) and, I have to admit, it's not really in as bad of condition as this forum made it sound.

 

I went there Friday (August 18th) and there were very small lines at almost every ride and all of the rides were up and running except for one. In regards to the wait times, I think the key advice I can give is to go on a week day and to avoid going on a Saturday/Sunday. Look at the report on Viper's line on the last page to see why I say this.

 

I got a total of three rides on ride of steel. The first two were walk-on waits, the third took about 3 cycles. It is a little rough, but tolerable. It's still a very good ride and is absolutely amazing in the very back car. Despite it's slight roughness, Ride of Steel is still easily my favorite coaster in the park.

 

Blast off was a walk on both times I went to it. Amazing airtime and not jerky at all. It's a very good S&S space shot tower.

 

I only went on Viper once because I was in a rush to eat lunch afterwards (yes, I know, that's a bad excuse but oh well) and enjoyed it more than I remembered enjoying it on past visits. I used to think of Mind Eraser as my second favorite coaster in the park but I have officially changed my mind in favor of Viper. It is a very smooth coaster despite being 35 years old and is easily the second smoothest coaster in the park (Motocoaster being the smoothest). The inversions were forceful, the speed was good throughout most of the ride (even the corkscrews), and your back feels as good when getting off as when it felt when you first boarded the ride.

 

Mind Eraser has a cool looking new paint job on it's front sign. Other than that, nothing has changed with Mind Eraser. I still like it (yes, I like Vekoma SLCs). It's kinda rough, but I can tolerate it. It's not the unbearable roughness that is experienced on Predator. The inversions have a fun snap to them. My only legitimate complaint about Mind Eraser is the paint. Some parts of the ride clearly have not been repainted in 20 years.

 

Predator was awful. On past visits I have been able to tolerate it but for some reason it was way worse this season. To be honest, I don't even know how. I mean, RMC even came in to repair the track so the track condition really has me scratching my head. Anyways, I don't recommend riding Predator in it's current state. It has potential (great layout), it simply needs a lot of care.

 

Boomerang is still what it has been. It is surprisingly smooth and is very fun and forceful. It's just a fun, average coaster. Not much else to say really.

 

Motocoaster is holding up really well after 9 years. It's still very smooth. The launch is very forceful and fun and the turns come at a very fast pace. Motocoasters are easily Zamperla's best coaster design as they do indeed manage to pack in a lot of action in a small space, and Darien Lake's Motocoaster is no exception.

 

Rolling Thunder's restraints are horrible. That's all I have to say about Rolling Thunder.

 

Twister was running a very good cycle. Forceful and not too short. Easily my favorite flat ride in the park.

 

Scrambler was very forceful and ran a nice, lengthy cycle.

 

I actually dared myself to ride Moose on the Loose and, to be honest, not as bad as I thought it would be.

 

Thunder Rapids is a good log flume. Easily the best in the state, in fact. My only complaint is how the water looks like oil.

 

Overall, I had a really good day there. It wasn't crowded and I got on everything in the park. I still think this park receives a bit more criticism than it should. I mean, to say Darien Lake is the worst park ever based on paint jobs, water in the log flume, and one ride's restraints does seem a bit harsh to me. After all, if you think that's bad, then go visit a small Chinise park filled with poorly maintained knock-off rides and then try judging again which is actually "bad" . I still like the park as a whole since it is very nice for short day trips (as long as it's not during the weekend). It's clean enough, all of the rides were open, and the food was pretty good too. The ride ops were rather nice as well. It's a park with potential.

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My comment was from a general observation that applies to all parks. It just so happens that it was posted in the Darien Lake thread because every year you read about the same issues that seem to affect the park.

 

I am a fan of DL, much more so than the peninsula that's only an hour from me, and I understand that DL doesn't have a major corporation handling the reins like it used to. It was said that one of the reasons ROS hasn't been painted is because you can't see it from inside the park. ROS is basically your Gatekeeper sitting next to Route 77. If anything they could at least paint the part of the ride that greets guests as they drive by.

 

Maybe it's still a bit early to jump to conclusions as we haven't really seen what this new version of Premier Parks will do with the park but I will say that in the short time that Herschend ran things we probably were expecting the momentum they started to still be going today.

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It would appear as though our Boomerang has run into another issue. It’s chain has snapped. Update via Reddit and the Amusement Parkrats (because it’s important to cite your sources ladies and gents). Who knows when it will be fixed, but there you have it!

CF0B3D70-B266-49BF-87C5-9EDC71201B9B.thumb.jpeg.dfedc170f743877321282aa4597f18eb.jpeg

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It would appear as though our Boomerang has run into another issue. It’s chain has snapped. Update via Reddit and the Amusement Parkrats (because it’s important to cite your sources ladies and gents). Who knows when it will be fixed, but there you have it!

 

Boomerang has had issues for a while if I am correct, I doubt this will get fixed this season, as the season for this park is almost done.

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^ Bommerang indeed has had issues in the past, the most recent one being the hydraulic leak that the coaster suffered last season and the season prior. They seemed to fix it this year and it is now pretty unfortunate that it is now facing a totally different but still major issue.

 

Fun fact: Boomerang turns 20 next year!

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Hopefully this ride doesn't suffer like ranger.

 

 

And am I the only one who doesn't think BTS should be built because it will be to simple for a floorless

 

Uh, it wont. Its just a chain. What is BTS?

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Hopefully this ride doesn't suffer like ranger.

 

 

And am I the only one who doesn't think BTS should be built because it will be to simple for a floorless

 

Uh, it wont. Its just a chain. What is BTS?

 

Boomerang is becoming a problem much like ranger. It has quite a bit of downtime also. I realize it's just a chain but not to mention the hydraulic problem, the multiple times boomerang has stopped on the lift and downtime

It probably won't close, and I hope it doesn't but of it does it will end up like ranger in the boneyard.

 

 

P.S. BTE is Batman The Escape from Astroworld sitting in the other, bigger I might add boneyard.

 

Edit:my mistake BTS is not BTE.

Edited by ride of steel
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Hopefully this ride doesn't suffer like ranger.

 

 

And am I the only one who doesn't think BTS should be built because it will be to simple for a floorless

 

Uh, it wont. Its just a chain. What is BTS?

 

Boomerang is becoming a problem much like ranger. It has quite a bit of downtime also. I realize it's just a chain but not to mention the hydraulic problem, the multiple times boomerang has stopped on the lift and downtime

It probably won't close, and I hope it doesn't but of it does it will end up like ranger in the boneyard.

 

 

P.S. BTS is Batman The Escape from Astroworld sitting in the other, bigger I might add boneyard.

 

You might be the only who thinks it WILL be built.

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Hopefully this ride doesn't suffer like ranger.

 

 

And am I the only one who doesn't think BTS should be built because it will be to simple for a floorless

 

Uh, it wont. Its just a chain. What is BTS?

 

Boomerang is becoming a problem much like ranger. It has quite a bit of downtime also. I realize it's just a chain but not to mention the hydraulic problem, the multiple times boomerang has stopped on the lift and downtime

It probably won't close, and I hope it doesn't but of it does it will end up like ranger in the boneyard.

 

 

P.S. BTS is Batman The Escape from Astroworld sitting in the other, bigger I might add boneyard.

 

You might be the only who thinks it WILL be built.

 

I don't think so and I hope not but a few dumb rumors surfaced and I would like to say that it would be pretty dumb to build it this it won't be built.

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