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Kings Dominion (KD) Discussion Thread


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I plan to go to the park this evening to give it a whirl. Pretty stoked as Grizzly was my favorite coaster growing up and remained my favorite wooden until I put in the effort to visit more parks outside of Virginia.

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I haven't ridden Grizzly since 2018 and I can't remember if that's because it was too brutal to ride or just too much of a shadow of its former self to give it any regard. Most likely... both. So tonight I made the trip to see what the Gravity Group did to my childhood favorite coaster and I think their mission to "restore the roar" was largely a success. It probably hasn't run this well in 25-30 years. To me, the first drop was always kind of nerfed a bit because the subsequent ascending hill up to the turnaround sapped all that speed. It still largely does that but with reprofiling  you really feel that first drop and get some good airtime going over it. The rest of the ride just runs great. Smooth, forceful journey in the woods. Although not quite the journey it was during Grizzly's first decade, thank you very little, Hurler. You can definitely notice the parts Gravity Group didn't give attention to. But you know what? I'm fine with that. I don't want my Grizzly TOO smooth. Also of note, a friend texted me after I left for the night  that one train seems to run a little more sluggish through the course. My initial couple of rides were slightly underwhelming and I left to go ride TT and I305. When I came back my rides all had a lot more zip. I did not pay attention to the color of the trains as I boarded each ride because I'm not a psychopath. Also, it was overcast and rainy with temperatures in the mid 60s when I rode. Would love to try Grizzly again on a hot summer night. And that might be the biggest takeaway. Grizzly is relevant again. I  haven't ridden Dominator or Flight of Fear in awhile, but Grizzly now makes a strong case for third best coaster in the park.

Slight touch of emotion tonight as I first rode Grizzly with my dad back in 1983 when I was 6 or 7. As mentioned in my post in the Universal Orlando thread, he passed away back in November.

 

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@redfoot12That's great to hear about Grizzly.  Though I don't plan on getting back to KD until Haunt (I actually skipped a CF pass this year.  *gasp!*), I hope it keeps the newness until then.

1 hour ago, redfoot12 said:

I haven't ridden Dominator or Flight of Fear in awhile, but Grizzly now makes a strong case for third best coaster in the park.

Avalanche/Reptilian would like to have a word.

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  • 5 weeks later...

We rode Grizzly yesterday. The first half is smooth, the second half is not. The ride is fine. A lot of slower sections weren't touched and they shuffled like crazy but it didn't matter because we weren't going fast enough that it was uncomfortable. I feel like a lot of parks wouldn't have bothered to publicize the fact that they kind-of re-tracked half of a ride. I like that they did it, but people should go in with tempered expectations for how extensive this refurbishment was.

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  • 1 month later...

Earlier in the summer I was supposed to take a Missouri trip which I ended up having to cancel due to conflicts that came up at work. I ended up with this week off and wouldn't have had time to do the Missouri jaunt, so I decided to hit up the VA parks for the first time in 4 years. Main reason is obviously Pantheon but Kings Dominion also exists and I really wanted to get back to one of my favorite Intamins. 

After finally arriving in the Richmond area at about 3am due to a late departure and 95 still managing to have a few messes at midnight, I slept late this morning and headed over to the park around 12:30. Parked nice and close as the park was pretty empty despite what most Virginians would consider a comfortable day this time of year in the upper 80s with low humidity.

My first order of business was Twisted Timbers. Like I said, I was here 4 years ago and somehow barely remember my Twisted Timbers rides. Usually that means the ride was very mediocre and unremarkable. But after my rides today, I have no idea why I'm not remembering my rides in 2019. This is truly an elite level RMC. The first drop in back is an amazing zero-G sensation, the camelbacks are El Toro level good, and the rest of the ride is totally relentless with airtime galore and a few other fun moments. I actually think this is better than Iron Gwazi and it rivals Arie Force One. The station wait that it had all day made things even better.

I got the Tumbili credit but what a waste of time. I didn't get a single flip. The line crawls because it has half the capacity of the Six Flags free spins and I just can't believe what I consider a mid-upper tier Cedar Fair park would put one of these in, especially a half sized model. 

Also wanted to touch upon Grizzly. I rode it back in 08 and thought it was a pile of sh*t and in 2019 I couldn't find the entrance and didn't bother asking because I remembered it being so bad. I was eager to get back on it today with the new retrack, and damn did they do a nice job with it! First drop is great, then that weird turnaround is still insanely slow but the rest of the layout is full of airtime and some good laterals. Even the second half that they didn't retrack...it definitely has some texture to it but I'd hardly consider it rough. This is a very good wooden coaster right now and definitely my 3rd favorite in the park. Would love to ride it at night.

My former 3rd favorite in the park, Dominator, is starting to get a little brutal in a couple spots. The transition from the first drop into the loop provided a nice clock to the head as did a few spots in the second half. It's still by far my favorite floorless as I love the layout with the amazing first drop, fast pace, drop off the mid course, etc. But floorlesses in general just haven't been aging well IMO. Most of them have become skipable to me. This one is worth riding for sure but its glory days are definitely behind it.

I-305 still kicks all kinds of ass. I understand that in the long run as far as return on investment for the park, the coaster was a major mistake but I'm just so glad it got built before they figured all that out lol.

Also hit Apple Zapple, Racer, FOF, Reptilian, Woodstock, the Flume, and Windseeker during the course of the day. Major closures that I saw were Drop Tower, the Eiffel Tower, and the Flyers. I think everything else was running.

I forgot how much I love this park overall. One of the best one two punches in the country but aside from those it still has a great supporting cast and it's just a really beautiful park. I need to start getting down here more often.

Pantheon tomorrow. Oh and Apollos, Alpie, Griffon, etc too. You locals have it rough with these two parks I tell ya haha.

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Checking to see if anyone has any recommendations on a hotel that is fairly central to the airport, KD, and BGW. A buddy and I are flying out for Labor Day weekend, and were hoping to not have to rent a car, and Uber around instead. Any help is greatly appreciated.

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KD and BGW are a little over an hour's drive apart. The Richmond airport is pretty much halfway between them, so maybe one of the hotels near the airport is your best bet.

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49 miles from the airport to BGW and 31 miles to KD. I feel like round tripping the parks with Uber would be more expensive than renting a car (although who knows how much a car will cost on Labor Day Weekend...so maybe not).

I'm staying in Glen Allen...it's closer to KD but I mainly chose it because there's a million restaurants in the area. Also because there are both a Wawa and a Sheetz within a mile of the hotel 😆

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  • 4 weeks later...

I made my first trip to Kings Dominion last Friday (Labor Day weekend). I knew what rides I was looking forward to riding, but little about the park other than that. I had been to Kings Island, so I knew there would be similarities between the two. I'm also used to going to Cedar Point, so all of these played into my impression of the park. 
 

One theme I noticed that plays into the whole day, KD expects their guests to be smart. At CP there are people everywhere reminding and telling guests what they can and cannot do. Partly it's crowd control, partly just dumb guests being dumb. I'll explain more later...

Starters: I arrived in the parking lot around 10:30am (Park opened at 11). The parking lot expects you to understand how to park your car. Meaning, there were no attendants in vests and whistles telling me where to go. This was surprise #1 of the day. I got a close parking spot and walked toward the entrance. There were no signs, and because of all the TREES ❤️ I could not see the entrance. "Where could it be? Oh, maybe toward the giant Eiffel Tower?!" Again, expecting their guests to be smart.

I got in line for the park to open. They have really nice TVs with info on them above each line. I thought these were a nice way to communicate to the guests. 

Once inside the beautiful park entrance with the fountains, music and TREES, I walked over to Dominator. It surprised me that no one (maybe a few I didn't see) ran. Surprise #2

My biggest surprise and at times irritation was the lack of staff running the rides. They may have had 2 checking restraints and on some only 1 staffer was checking restraints. It was not uncommon for a one train to cycle and be waiting before #2 would dispatch. One dispatch took 4 minutes as the guy on the platform leisurely checked restraints, gates and slowly walked to give the thumbs up. 
I only ever saw 3 rides Twisted Timbers, Flight of Fear and Intimidator with staff at the front of the queue. Mostly making sure no loose articles went through. But on multiple occasions I saw kids sit in the coaster, and then asked to stand up and get measured to make sure they were tall enough. Yes, this slowed things down, but they usually gave the child a wristband for their height preventing this from happening again. Also, no station sorters. Once you got to the station it was crowd in as much as you want, and lots of open seats. I saw one TT train go with 6 empty single rider seats.  THIS, This paragraph is my only complaints about the park.

(Again, guests need to be smart and know how tall they need to be, what they can/cannot bring, and what seats to use. There was also almost never a "schpiel" about 'welcome oncoming riders...") 

Even though it was a holiday weekend, the park never seemed busy. Most roller coasters I was able to enter the station before I had to wait (Racer, Dominator and Flight of Fear are the only exceptions). The longest wait of the day was for the log ride, about 20 minutes. 

I love how easy the park is to get around, and that rides are clustered together. You can enter and exit 2-4 rides all within a close distance. I was talking to one couple and they asked me about Cedar Point, I told them great rides, but you have to walk a lot. 

Grizzly was so fun! I sat in the back and you float the whole way down the first drop! It's smooth where it needs to be and bumpy fun in places. Such a fun woodie. (I also found it funny that the exit line is a longer walk than the entrance. Anyone know of other rides where this is the case).  

White Water Canyon is probably the best river raft ride I've been on (Granted, I've only ridden like 6). It was fast, long, and the smaller 6-person raft allows for more rocking and swaying. It also surprised me they dispatched 3 rafts at one! If you've not ridden it, DO! There are no waterfalls to soak you, just good splashes from the rapids. 

TT was excellent! I love the 3 airtime hills and the final roll. 

Intimidator was POWERFUL. That first turn, I know the stories and the redesign of it. I grayed out, and my last time riding it (#5) I blacked out and came back coming down the second hill. I knew that was enough for one day 😆

Dominator rocks. I rode it years ago when it was at Six Flags Ohio/Geauga Lake. Still runs great. Great layout and pretty smooth (just a little rattle here and there). 

My last surprise... NO DOWNTIME! Not once throughout the entire day did I experience down time on any ride. Every ride I went to or rode was open and running. Not a single breakdown. Going to Cedar Point, that's just part of the experience "Do we wait it out or leave." Great job maintenance crews!

I loved going to KD and cannot wait to come back for Haunts or Christmas events later this year. It's a beautiful park, lots of trees and character throughout. 
I guess, Virginia is for lovers and those who can appreciate a park at a more leisurely pace.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/6/2023 at 8:47 AM, MartinU said:

Partly it's crowd control, partly just dumb guests being dumb.

There's nothing I like more than making myself feel better than other people who are trying to have a leisurely care-free time at a theme park. I personally try to take it as serious as possible. Since I have less stressors in my life, I wish those who worked hard all week caring for families would be way more diligent. Keeping kids in line and having multiple different things going on at once isn't an excuse for making an occasional mistake. People are fucking dumb.

If everyone went to theme parks all the time, instead of begrudgingly doing it every couple years to avoid the huge pain in the ass with kids, life would be better for me.

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  • 2 months later...

Planning on making our first Winterfest trip. I've not seen many reviews. How crazy are the crowds for this event? Any tips for those who have gone?

The pictures look great that KD has put out. I love Christmas lights, and would love to get on a few coasters. I cannot wait to see it all up close. 

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I went on opening night; the place was dead.  My longest wait of the night was 5 and a half trains for the back row of Twisted Timbers.  I should have my TR from it up soon.

Be sure to check the weather forecast before going, since they don't run Twisted Timbers or Dominator (the only two thrill coasters open for Winterfest) if it drops below 40 degrees.

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On 11/21/2023 at 12:33 PM, AmyUD06 said:

Be sure to check the weather forecast before going, since they don't run Twisted Timbers or Dominator (the only two thrill coasters open for Winterfest) if it drops below 40 degrees.

Lol.

I guess I better enjoy the crap out of Nitro on New Year's Day this year because if this is what Cedar Fair is bringing to the Six Flags parks, then it will probably be the final time we can do that. SFNE might as well just shut down in mid October.

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1 hour ago, Zand said:

Lol.

I guess I better enjoy the crap out of Nitro on New Year's Day this year because if this is what Cedar Fair is bringing to the Six Flags parks, then it will probably be the final time we can do that. SFNE might as well just shut down in mid October.

I'll trade freezing coaster rides for the everything else that CF does better than Six Flags any day of the week.  There's more to parks than coasters.

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  • 3 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Just had a “premium” time at Kings Dominion today.  I sincerely hope the Six Flags era isn’t starting early. 

Took me 9.5 hours to get to Doswell from my place near Cleveland Hopkins airport. The number of crashes on I-495 and 95 is just mind boggling.  Now I have not been to KD since 2009, and I have been visiting Kings Island numerous times a year since 2020, so for me, it was like walking into Bizarro Kings Island.  I will say that KD’s International Street is really quite nice.  The extra trees add a nice touch, and the fountain doesn’t seem to be as long, so it is much easier to traverse.  I Got my FL wristband from a friendly girl at one of the gift shops inside the front gate, which saved me from having to wait in a rather large line at the “Upgrades” counter and headed to get the 3 credits I didn’t yet have.  

First stop, Twisted Timber (credit #277).  Posted wait time for standby was 75+ minutes. Unfortunately the same prison-style shakedown in effect at Cedar Point’s Steel Vengeance is in effect here too.  Also rather unfortunate- single train operations. My FastLane wait was 30 minutes, so I can only imagine what the standby wait was.  My opinion of this ride is that it is completely insane. The first drop inversion was crazy and the constant airtime and quick direction changes made me completely forget this was once a Hurler. Good ride, and I was hoping to ride it again, but the line never seemed to die down. 

The main reason I wanted to visit KD was for Project 305 (credit #278), the lone North American giga I hadn’t yet ridden. One train ops here and about 4-5 minute dispatches resulted in a 30 minute FL wait here also.  I was excited as the train climbed the 305 foot lift, and I was preparing for the much discussed grey out turn.  And yes, it did indeed cause quite the vision blur!  The rest of the ride is basically just high-speed s-turns, which is cool and very Maverick-esque, but as a whole, the ride just didn’t impress me. I’ll take Fury, Millennium Force and even Orion (I know, “not a giga” lol) over this any day.

Since I had to pass Flight of Fear on the way out of P-305, and the posted wait time here was 75+ minutes, so I asked if it too was one train operations.  the guy at the entrance said “no, two!”.  So I figured I’d give it a whirl.  25 minutes later, I was boarding my train. The family behind me said they had waited 90 minutes.  Ugh!  Anyhow, I think this FoF is better than Kings Island’s as the train doesn’t sit on the mid-course for 5 seconds, and it seemed overall darker inside the spaghetti bowl, creating a very disorienting ride experience. Good stuff, but someone needs to turn the volume of the music and sound effects down a bit.  It was truly ear splitting!

My final new credit was Tumbili (#279), my first S&S free spin. Two cars were being used (not sure if there are any more) and the FastLane line was only 10 minutes, so that was a plus. I actually kind of liked this ride. I got 2 full (and very forceful) flips and while the ride is insanely short, it’s smooth and it made me smile after the park was kind of a let down thus far.  

Reptilian was closed when I first arrived, but it was open after I exited Tumbili.  The app said a 60 minute wait, and the FastLane line looked like there was only about 20 people in it so I got in line.  40 minutes later, I was climbing aboard. One train ops and the limited capacity made this a slow moving line.  Too bad because I absolutely love this ride. Why didn’t we get more Mack bobsleds in the States?  Fast, smooth, and the second half feels like you’re going to slide ride out of the trough.  Great ride, but that line… the standby line stretched way back to near Tumbili’s entrance. Yikes!

The singing mushrooms never sang. Boo!

I wrapped up my visit with a one cycle (FastLane) wait for Flying Eagles, which run VERY fast, and a walk-on FastLane ride on the Blue Ridge Tollway antique cars. This had to be the worst antique car ride I have ever done as the steering wheel did absolutely nothing. I bounced off the rail through the whole course. 

Other things that sort of irked me: Racer 75 had one train and one track operating. Grizzly’s line said <15 minutes on the app. The line stretched all the way to the gift shop with, yes, one train.  Don’t think that was 15 minutes! Delirium, Anaconda, Backlot Stunt Coaster, Drop Tower, Windseeker, and the Log Flume were all down. There were no “merger people” for FastLane and ant Tumbili annd Reptilian, no one was even checking.  And lines for food were just ridiculous.  Yes, I know it was Good Friday and the weather was quite nice. But this was a pretty bad day all around and I sincerely felt sorry for people without FastLane as they probably didn’t get on much at all.  

So that’s my review of Kings Dominion. Doubt I’ll be heading back again anytime soon… and that’s a shame because it is a nice park that has a lot of good things going for it. Thanks for reading…
 

 

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We got lucky a couple years ago when we went in late May.   The weather was threatening and so the park was empty.  We rode I-305 3 times for early ride time and then it went down.   We were able to get 5 rides on Twisted Timbers.   That ride can get brutal with that many rides! 

We were surprised about Tumbili and really enjoyed it. 

We did have a thunderstorm in the middle of the day which lasted for almost 2 hours.  We spent that time eating a sit down lunch. 

We enjoyed the park quite a bit especially since the waits were no more than 5 minutes all day.

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On 3/29/2024 at 9:09 PM, BitterOldHag said:

Just had a “premium” time at Kings Dominion today.  I sincerely hope the Six Flags era isn’t starting early. 

Took me 9.5 hours to get to Doswell from my place near Cleveland Hopkins airport. The number of crashes on I-495 and 95 is just mind boggling.  Now I have not been to KD since 2009, and I have been visiting Kings Island numerous times a year since 2020, so for me, it was like walking into Bizarro Kings Island.  I will say that KD’s International Street is really quite nice.  The extra trees add a nice touch, and the fountain doesn’t seem to be as long, so it is much easier to traverse.  I Got my FL wristband from a friendly girl at one of the gift shops inside the front gate, which saved me from having to wait in a rather large line at the “Upgrades” counter and headed to get the 3 credits I didn’t yet have.  

First stop, Twisted Timber (credit #277).  Posted wait time for standby was 75+ minutes. Unfortunately the same prison-style shakedown in effect at Cedar Point’s Steel Vengeance is in effect here too.  Also rather unfortunate- single train operations. My FastLane wait was 30 minutes, so I can only imagine what the standby wait was.  My opinion of this ride is that it is completely insane. The first drop inversion was crazy and the constant airtime and quick direction changes made me completely forget this was once a Hurler. Good ride, and I was hoping to ride it again, but the line never seemed to die down. 

The main reason I wanted to visit KD was for Project 305 (credit #278), the lone North American giga I hadn’t yet ridden. One train ops here and about 4-5 minute dispatches resulted in a 30 minute FL wait here also.  I was excited as the train climbed the 305 foot lift, and I was preparing for the much discussed grey out turn.  And yes, it did indeed cause quite the vision blur!  The rest of the ride is basically just high-speed s-turns, which is cool and very Maverick-esque, but as a whole, the ride just didn’t impress me. I’ll take Fury, Millennium Force and even Orion (I know, “not a giga” lol) over this any day.

Since I had to pass Flight of Fear on the way out of P-305, and the posted wait time here was 75+ minutes, so I asked if it too was one train operations.  the guy at the entrance said “no, two!”.  So I figured I’d give it a whirl.  25 minutes later, I was boarding my train. The family behind me said they had waited 90 minutes.  Ugh!  Anyhow, I think this FoF is better than Kings Island’s as the train doesn’t sit on the mid-course for 5 seconds, and it seemed overall darker inside the spaghetti bowl, creating a very disorienting ride experience. Good stuff, but someone needs to turn the volume of the music and sound effects down a bit.  It was truly ear splitting!

My final new credit was Tumbili (#279), my first S&S free spin. Two cars were being used (not sure if there are any more) and the FastLane line was only 10 minutes, so that was a plus. I actually kind of liked this ride. I got 2 full (and very forceful) flips and while the ride is insanely short, it’s smooth and it made me smile after the park was kind of a let down thus far.  

Reptilian was closed when I first arrived, but it was open after I exited Tumbili.  The app said a 60 minute wait, and the FastLane line looked like there was only about 20 people in it so I got in line.  40 minutes later, I was climbing aboard. One train ops and the limited capacity made this a slow moving line.  Too bad because I absolutely love this ride. Why didn’t we get more Mack bobsleds in the States?  Fast, smooth, and the second half feels like you’re going to slide ride out of the trough.  Great ride, but that line… the standby line stretched way back to near Tumbili’s entrance. Yikes!

The singing mushrooms never sang. Boo!

I wrapped up my visit with a one cycle (FastLane) wait for Flying Eagles, which run VERY fast, and a walk-on FastLane ride on the Blue Ridge Tollway antique cars. This had to be the worst antique car ride I have ever done as the steering wheel did absolutely nothing. I bounced off the rail through the whole course. 

Other things that sort of irked me: Racer 75 had one train and one track operating. Grizzly’s line said <15 minutes on the app. The line stretched all the way to the gift shop with, yes, one train.  Don’t think that was 15 minutes! Delirium, Anaconda, Backlot Stunt Coaster, Drop Tower, Windseeker, and the Log Flume were all down. There were no “merger people” for FastLane and ant Tumbili annd Reptilian, no one was even checking.  And lines for food were just ridiculous.  Yes, I know it was Good Friday and the weather was quite nice. But this was a pretty bad day all around and I sincerely felt sorry for people without FastLane as they probably didn’t get on much at all.  

So that’s my review of Kings Dominion. Doubt I’ll be heading back again anytime soon… and that’s a shame because it is a nice park that has a lot of good things going for it. Thanks for reading…
 

 

You don't sound all that bitter, lol. I enjoyed the write up 

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On 3/29/2024 at 8:09 PM, BitterOldHag said:

Just had a “premium” time at Kings Dominion today.  I sincerely hope the Six Flags era isn’t starting early. 

Be honest with yourself. Do you expect it to get any better after the merger?

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  • 3 months later...

Trip Report:

 

We kicked off our annual summer road trip made the drive down from the Canadian border, basically, to Doswell on Saturday the 14th. I only bring up the drive to mention the first time I noticed what would become the theme of the next few days: heat! I hadn't looked at or thought about the weather going into this. The days we could go were the days we could go, so weather didn't matter. We would show up at the parks and do what we could each day with what the weather brought. Well, it brought the heat. It was 11 PM and I was in Maryland when I noticed it was still 87 degrees out. Yikes.

Quick aside before I get to the park: We stayed at the La Quinta in across from King's Dominion. Don't do that. I am one of the least picky travelers you will ever meet, but this place was an absolutely filthy dump with abysmal service. If anyone wants more detail, ask and I will provide, but this is a coaster forum so that is what I will talk about now. I just wanted to give the warning.

The forecast for Sunday was a high of 97, but it didn't matter. We walked over to the park at opening and decided to walk towards the back at gate drop while letting the GP hit the stuff by the entrance. This was my third time in the park, but the first time since 2012. It was my 13 year old son's first time.

Grizzly -- First ride we came to was this woodie. The entrance is weirdly through a gift shop, but they had signs up so it was no big deal. The coaster itself was also kind of no big deal. We were on what I think was the second train of the day and got a zen ride, so that might of contributed, but at the same time it was already well into the 90s out so I think that is kind of a wash in terms of the impact on the ride. It did its thing. We found it kind of boring, I guess. Inoffensive, but boring.

Apple Zapple -- We saw Twisted Timbers and were excited for it, but I pulled my son over to the big wild mouse to hit it in case a line was going to build up. You know how these things go in terms of capacity. I was actually pretty disappointed by this one. Not that I had some grand expectation of greatness or anything, but I thought the big drop that this expanded model brought would do more. It was uninteresting and otherwise just a standard wild mouse once you popped up from it.

Twisted Timbers -- We were 2/2 with minor coasters in terms of having basically no reaction to them. Was it the heat getting to us? RMC would put our ability to feel to the test. This was my first new credit, one of two for the day (or so I thought at the time), and it was both a laugh and a scream a minute. It is a little short, but Twisted Timbers has a GREAT layout for an airtime junky like me. I really loved this ride. My only problem was that I found the restraints pretty painful. After hitting back then front, a third ride was out of the question. I have found RMC restraints to be a really inconsistent experience for me. Some rides hurt a lot (this one), just a little (ex: Steel Vengeance), and some not at all (ex: Wicked Cyclone). Some even slowly release up and distract from the ride completely as I wonder if they are going to hold! (Storm Chaser) Still, even with the restraints making me feel like I just got off Superman at SFNE, I loved this ride.

Racer 75 -- We went up the left side walkway first and hopped in the front row of the blue train for a race. The race lasted a quarter of the way up the lift hill when we were stopped so the ride ops could scold a lady for having her phone out. Race ruined. But the ride continued and ended up basically being the same experience I had at King's Island. I don't know if this ride is actually a clone or not, but it felt like it. For both Racers, I thought the ride out was really fun and the ride back too slow to deliver on its hills. Good ride overall though. You could feel it isn't tracking super well in the places that haven't been redone, but as with many of these old PTCs, they slow you down any time you turn around and the roughness doesn't matter much when it is going straight. Afterward, we repeated the ride on the right side for the second credit for the son. It was a let down to realize the ride was running three trains between the two sides though, so again we missed the race. Oh well. Coaster nerd bonus: When we got back to the hotel and I added these to the sheet, I realized I had not remembered that I had only ridden one side of Racer prior so there was a third credit I didn't expect.

Tumbili -- Next we wandered over to the new themed area, which looked very nice. The heat was starting to get to me though, so I probably didn't take it in as well as I could have. We also got a view of the new B&M launched coaster going in while waiting in line. Another reason to come back eventually! Can't complain about that. Anyway, I have a weird relationship with 4D Free Spins. It seems like the longer I go without riding one, the more I like them. Then each ride very rapidly has diminishing returns until I hate them. Since it had been a couple years since I ran into a new one and I hadn't re-ridden any, I actually really liked Tumbili. We only got one spin, but the jerky drops and partial rotations were fun. This is was a nice filler addition. It was also my last new credit for the day.

Reptilian -- What a difference a coat of paint makes! Avalanche/Reptilian is what it is. It is slow and meandering until it isn't at the end, but when it finally picks up the speed to be exciting, the ride immediately ends. I like the ride fine and would love to feel it without the first trim completely stopping the train someday. I can imagine how insane the finale would be if it got to keep the initial speed, if that would be safe of course. But back to the paint! The new look and re-theming to fit into the new area was brilliantly done. It is a very pretty ride now and fits great. Well done, KD.

Backlot Stunt Coaster -- Now for the opposite. What the heck is this thing at this point? Just tear it out. Not a single effect is working anymore, quite literally not one, so I guess the theme is riding through a... junkyard? The launch is fun. I always think the first helix on these is an underrated intensity moment. Being launched the second time through the dark is fun, sure. But without any of the effects that mostly still worked last time we were at KI and CW, the coaster is just weird and lifeless. Take it out if you're not going to let it be what it is anymore. It isn't like the place is lacking for launches.

Anaconda -- Oof. I will always be nostalgic towards old Arrows and hopeful while in line, but we got a really poor, headbanging ride on this one. I don't really remember it from 12 years ago, but I wish I did to compare how it has aged versus what it was then. The current state is not good. It is time to put in the money to fix this thing or replace it.

Flight of Fear - I forget how much I end up liking these each time I ride them. The launch isn't the amazing punch it looks like it will be out of the station while waiting in line, but it is good enough and the spaghetti style, inversion filled layout with limited lighting is disorienting in a way that I always end up liking. I didn't notice any real differences between it and the other two I had ridden more recently either, unlike with Backlot Stunt Coaster. I also want to praise the restraints on these. I wish they caught on. The lap bars are super comfortable, there are no OTSRs, and the seatbelt clicking into the lapbar as a backup is much better for the rider, at least in my opinion, then having them actually wear the seatbelt. 

Project 305 - The last time I went to Kings Dominion and my first ride on I305 was the first year after the reprofiled turn, if I am remembering right, and I had kind of a funny experience. My wife and I rode it together, as we always did then, and I had no idea what the hell just happened to me. I grayed out hard right after even the reprofiled turn and barely registered the rest of the ride. I knew I needed a re-ride, but my wife... said no. She just flat out refused to do that again. This is the only time in our life together that she ever refused to ride anything. With that, I didn't ride it again until this trip. It was one of those perfect walk ons too. We grabbed the back not only without waiting with anyone ahead of us, but without even waiting at the gate. It opened as we joined the queue and we walked right on without ever stopping. Despite the heat and my dehydration, I did not gray out fully this time, though I was close, and I was able to recover quickly enough to enjoy the rest of the ride. I like this one better than I thought I did! What a powerhouse this giant Intamin is. I can only imagine the borderline 100 degree weather had it hauling particularly fast too. It will need to move up my nerd rankings for sure. I305 did make me nauseous though as I sat on the break run, probably because of the heat and dehydration, at least in part, so we left it again to one ride. We talked about coming back later at night and hitting it again after cooling off at the hotel, but we never did.

Woodstock Express -- We peaked into the kiddy land to see if there was a line for this. Unsurprisingly given the heat and lack of lines all day, it was a walk on so we grabbed the credit for my kid. Every time I ride one of these, I think about what an underrated ride it is for the kids. Modern bigger kid friendly coasters like Gravity Group family woodies or Vekoma Family Inverts have upped their speed and intensity, so this bigger looking ride with its calm, but not boring (for a kid) layout is an increasingly rare sweetspot as a stepping stone for young kids working their nerves up for the big rides. We also grabbed a ride on the air conditioned little shooter while in the area to cool off. I am sad to report my son beat me on one of these for the first time ever, thought to be honest we both performed poorly!

Dominator -- We closed our time in the oven with a ride on this B&M Floorless. My god was it moving in the heat. This was unquestionably the fastest and most intense ride I have ever gotten on a B&M Floorless, bar none. It was very rattly, but that rarely bothers me on B&Ms and I loved the ride we got. If we weren't dying from the heat at this point, I would have wanted another go. We were very much dying from the just under 100 degree heat, however, so we walked back to the hotel and ended up calling it a night.

It only took about five hours on the dot to work through the entire lineup at King's Dominion. The crowds were light due the forecasted highs and I imagine those who were there were mostly at the water park. I think the only coasters were waited at all for were Tumbili and Backlot Stunt Coaster. Neither wait was more than 20 minutes. All in all it was a good, albeit HOT, day at the park. I hit credit number 237 and Dominator was my son's 175th.

Busch Gardens Williamsburg was our plan for the next day. Somehow the forecast was even hotter, but that is a post coming in that thread.

Thanks for reading.

EDIT: I put the date as the 20th instead of the 14th. What is time, anyway?

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