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Kings Dominion (KD) Discussion Thread


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This one definitely hurts more than most. I had no problem with Cedar Fair removing their old Vekomas (Boomerang, Stinger, Firehawk), but this removal is definitely the largest and most iconic of them all. I'm glad I rode it 4-5 times in 2017. I really appreciate the coaster's uniqueness. There was nothing like it when it was built and even 20 years later, it still stood as the only launched full-circuit invert.

 

That being said, nothing lasts forever. And knowing Cedar Fair and Kings Dominion, I'm sure the replacement down the line will be worthy. Cedar Fair really is cutting the crap with their overly-high-maintenance coasters. They're not playing any games.

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Apparently the park sent out an email saying that Kings Dominion will open on March 22nd! Oh, did I say March? I meant May. Alpengeist, InvadR and Verbolten are open tomorrow. This comp

Too bad Volcano isn't still around. It was ahead of its time not only technologically, but it already had limited capacity down to a science.

Yesterday, after my brief stop at SFA, I fought through the perpetual Northern Virginia I-95 traffic to check out Kings Dominion's Taste of the Season event - a COVID-blamed Winterfest-lite.  And beli

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Alright, I’m not even gonna lie, reading that blog update made me cry. I’ll admit it & I don’t care. I know Volcano was a pain to keep up, but I did NOT think they would throw in the towel on it this soon. I never thought I’d be hurt by the removal of a coaster, but this truly hurts. Volcano was my first ever launched coaster and it was my first coaster with inversions, so it holds a very special place in my heart and I really hate to see it go smh...wow, I really can’t believe this. But, I know KD will replace it with another amazing coaster someday, I hope. Just a shame the one and only launched full circuit invert coasters will soon be no more. It’s saddening...truly. It had one of the best launches I’ve ever experienced & I’m glad I got a MANY rides on it.

 

C.I.P. Volcano: The Blast Coaster May you erupt in coaster heaven.

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This is truly a sad day in the coaster world, what was once (and still somewhat was) a unique coaster experience is lost forever. There really wasn't anything else like it, and Intamin only made 3 inverted coasters to begin with. Of course like many revolutionary rides the maintenance costs finally caught up to it, not too mention it's capacity was never the greatest. One of my all time favorites though, will easily be missed.

With that being said, if they decide to keep the mountain, we may just see a clone or something similar to Canada's Wonderland Guardian ride since they too had a mountain to work with. Not sure how feasible that would be but it could work and makes sense. If not, they should remove the mountain for future expansion whatever that may be. Possibly a Mack coaster like at Carowinds, who knows.

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Man this blows. I always feel like a douche being upset about ride removals but (not to be corny) there is pain in losing something that always brings/brought you so much joy. Volcano wasn't the best coaster but it was super unique, had a couple badass launches, and was just a weird and wonky machine that always put a smile on my face. Not to mention, this is my first year with a KD platinum pass, and part of the reason for the purchase was hoping they'd had a year to sort out these issues and Volcano would be back in business for 2019. I'm not like... gonna go burn my pass or anything lol but it's a little annoying for that reason.

 

Definitely one of the best coasters in the park and let's not forgot how it ALWAYS had the longest line in the park. I know part of that was capacity but I also know people LOVED the sh*t out of this ride (just look at the comments on their FB page).

 

Out of curiosity, does anyone know when the last time it actually operated was? We did get a lap on it on opening weekend 2018 and I know it went down shortly after that.

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While this announcement is sad, it isn't very surprising. I think the law of diminishing returns finally caught up with Volcano. I'll miss this unique coaster, which I always had to ride first thing in the morning before the days of Fast Lane Plus. Those two launches were incredible.

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Well I have our visit planned for the first week of June, and had Volcano on the bucket list! Scratch that!!

 

Shame really as it looks like a fun ride (when it is working!). That still leaves I305, Dominator and Twisted Timbers to look forward to though....so it isn't all bad.

 

It would be interesting to know the decision making process behind removing a (popular) ride from a park. Factors of cost, safety, maintenance, will it be replaced with something "better" etc etc. Whilst it can be frustrating for coaster fans, I am sure there are lots of factors at play...and this is not a decision they take lightly.

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a real shame, but I guess if it's sitting there SBNO for most of the season, the mechanical issues must be a nightmare to deal with.

 

so this is now the 2nd super unique coaster (the other being Hypersonic) that Kings Dominion tried with, and eventually just had to give up on.

 

I really liked this coaster, and glad I got to ride it, but have faith that KD will put something unique and neat in that position (tho wouldn't surprise me if a flat goes in there, since that area of the park is so "coaster heavy". .and no guarantee it would get replaced with a similar ride - ie: coaster ).

 

Hell, they could put in a bathroom over there (the area *really* needs one), since KD already has such a great coaster lineup.

 

I am super sad that Volcano is leaving before FoF, as the midcourse brakes on that just kill the flow of the ride, and didn't enjoy it much on either of my trips. . . . tho it DOES seem to be popular with the public based on lines for it that I've seen, and the announcement does mention "Guest satisfaction"

 

 

FoF *is* right next to Volcano tho. . imagine how much space that would open up if both went out

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Well I have our visit planned for the first week of June, and had Volcano on the bucket list! Scratch that!!

 

Shame really as it looks like a fun ride (when it is working!). That still leaves I305, Dominator and Twisted Timbers to look forward to though....so it isn't all bad.

 

 

don't skip Racer. ..the retracking they did had it running AMAZING in the summer of 2018.

(sure it's just an out and back racing woodie. . but man, was it fun. . and in the rain it was *flying*)

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Well, I was certainly thrown off guard by the park`s announcement. But, this coaster has always been a capacity/maintenance nightmare, given the GP love of this unique ride.

 

Seems the "one block" operational nature of this coaster with a launch system did not allow for capacity to improve. Maybe a split load/unload area with alternating sides might have allowed more throughput.

 

Given that volcano was a prototype coaster, I know they underestimated the power needed to launch the train and make a full curcuit that 1st season (remember the 2 seats per car instead of having the designed 4 seats per car?). The whole electro-magnetic launch system technology was still in its infancy in the mid-late 90's. FOF was just 2 years before volcano. It does appear that LIM motors, used on volcano, are NOT used on current, new electro-magnetic launched coasters. Seems LSM motors are the equipment of choice now.

 

I also thought volcano had structural issues with stress on certain areas of the ride; especially the apex portion where the trains exit the top of the volcano. Maybe the structural engineering of the ride was not robust enough for the stresses generated.

 

I can see now where any combination of the reasons above would make CF/KD make the decision to send volcano to the trash bin. Given CF's new policy of ditching low capacity / high down-time

/ high-maintence attractions over the last 2-3 seasons, Volcano's end was in sight.

 

Thanks for taking a chance KD on a very unique and fun ride that was volcano.

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Such a bipolar day for Virginia. First the closure of Volcano is announced and then some huge news on the Busch Gardens coaster. I’m very sad to see Volcano go. Such an incredibly unique coaster.

I remember going the first time and riding Volcano, HyperSonic XLT, the Italian job coaster, and Tomb Raider. Hopefully they can use the volcano Itself for a future ride.

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Such a bipolar day for Virginia. First the closure of Volcano is announced and then some huge news on the Busch Gardens coaster.

 

um.. whut?

 

are you talking about BGT?. . cause you know, Tampa isn't in Virginia.

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Sad. I admit it wasn't the best ride, was kinda slow and weird after leaving the top and too short, it always bummed me out you plunged down so fast right into breaks. But it was a fun unique ride. I will miss it and feel and I haven't been to KD in years and thus my final ride feels like a distant memory now, 2012 it was. Because of that I had no idea this ride was rarely operational for 2 years now and my God were the lines heinous. I certainly dont blame KD and not like it was a top tier ride but it was a classic. RIP volcano

Edited by JJLehto
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Such a bipolar day for Virginia. First the closure of Volcano is announced and then some huge news on the Busch Gardens coaster.

 

um.. whut?

 

are you talking about BGT?. . cause you know, Tampa isn't in Virginia.

 

He's not, some plans leaked for the BGW 2020 project coaster earlier in the day yesterday

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Such a bipolar day for Virginia. First the closure of Volcano is announced and then some huge news on the Busch Gardens coaster.

 

um.. whut?

 

are you talking about BGT?. . cause you know, Tampa isn't in Virginia.

 

He's not, some plans leaked for the BGW 2020 project coaster earlier in the day yesterday

 

too funny, since I actually googled BGW looking for news before responding, assuming I had missed something.

 

doesn't seem anyone is talking about it..not even in threads here.

 

but ok.. . guess something for folks to spin wheels about - a use for the Drachen Fire station!

 

Back to KD tho. . .

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In September 2009 I took a trip to the east coast to ride Big Bad Wolf at BGW before it closed for good. I stopped at SFA and KD on the trip too - it was my first time visiting any of those parks. Here's a screenshot of what I posted to Facebook after the trip...

IMG_3578.thumb.jpg.e3705b8de8348d18e21aba74bb63c4cf.jpg

Note the caption!

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Ouch...this, right after Firehawk, two of my favorite "weird" coasters. I guess Cedar Fair's really had it with "difficult" rides. When Volcano first opened it was one of my absolute favorite coasters. It really hasn't fallen that far in the rankings since then, it's just so different.

 

I do hope they keep the mountain and find something new to fit into it. It's so iconic for that corner of the park, and it's already held several wildly different rides; one more doesn't seem to be too much to hope for.

 

At least those damn smurfs are definitely all cooked by now, anyway.

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I got to ride it about a dozen times since 1999. My last ride was last April when it was a one train operation.

 

Fun ride, but a maintenance nightmare.

 

I predict they'll replace it with a Copperhead Strike type ride in the near future.

2018-04-04_12-43-54_778.thumb.jpeg.e8867d755cc3db957341deec8d97c618.jpeg

2018-04-04_12-59-12_550.thumb.jpeg.9719800154b63b1a596cb058d9d3afc3.jpeg

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I've got my popcorn popped waiting on Coasterbill to stir the pot...

 

In all seriousness, the news sucks but not surprising. Seeing all these people on Facebook losing their minds is pretty crazy. My favorites are the ones who mention that it always had a long line which is why they can't get rid of it. It had a long line because capacity was so bad. My personal opinion was it was amazing for what it was. After having ridden it the first time, if the wait was more than 30 minutes, it was a skip for me. Most times you can get two rides on Intimidator to one on Volcano. It is iconic and was groundbreaking.

 

I'm sure there's something up their sleeve and there is that GPS teaser that we haven't heard anything more about. This will surely speed up any plans for the future that they have.

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Not to shocked to hear this news as I first started to hear some whispers about it being removed in December. Just didn't take them to seriously. Take it with a grain of salt, but from the whispers it had a lot to due with stress fractures on the track, supports and bolts. And was just ungodly expensive to repair. True? Untrue? Idk, but sounds reasonable now that they officially announced it's removal. Hopefully more information will come out with time.

 

Sigh, another credit left on the table. On my 4 lifetime visits to KD the ride was closed all day each visit. Definitely bummed I missed this one.

 

I do wonder if they plan on keeping the mountain for future plans or if the whole thing will come down with the ride itself.

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Well, this sucks. I'm grateful I got to ride it back in 2014. I was always intrigued by this ride. I bought a Fast Lane + and got several front row rides on it. I'm really thankful for that. Like others have said, while not amazing, it was unique and fun.

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Here's some footage we shot a couple of years ago including a reverse POV that I don't think we ever posted....

 

And this right here would be my thoughts exactly...

In all seriousness, the news sucks but not surprising
Edited by robbalvey
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^ Just a question based on your personal experience, Robb, but how well had it aged over the years for you? I mean, you used to live nearby so I'd imagine you know the coaster well.

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