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Michigan's Adventure PTR 6/24/2010


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For the longest time I've wanted to see what all the fuss is about Shivering Timbers! Most people say it's right up there with Voyage, others say it's extremely over rated and just an average out-n-back woodie. Well I have to say its... you'll just have to read the PTR and find out!

 

So I was on my way to my cousin's (Mitchell who is a coaster enthusiast) and my friend Zach calls. He asked if I wanted to go to Kings Island tomorrow. I said sure but wasn't excited cause Kings Island is kinda boring, so I talked him into going to Six Flags Great America. Only thing wrong with that is Mitchell lost his SF season pass and didn't have money to get a new one. And we just went to CP a few days ago, so we all agreed on Michigan's Adventure!

 

It was about 2AM. when we decided to go to MA so I had to go home and get all my stuff (camera, batteries, cell phone charger, coaster-tee, ect). Me and Mitchell ended up watching Michigan's Adventures videos and PTRs all night and at about 4AM. he went to sleep. I tried to sleep too but I got distracted watching TV. I didn't realize what time it was until my alarm went off which was set for me to be able to wake up for the trip. I was wide awake so I decided I'd just try to stay awake the rest of the day. Once Mitchell woke up (5:45am) he called his Mom and asked if he could go to MA, she said yes. So we were off... to pick up Zach! Luckily Zach lives just a few miles up north of us so we got there pretty quick.

 

The GPS had us stay on I-465 until we got to Keystone, than take US-31 pretty much the whole up until somewhere in Michigan. But being 6AM. on a weekday, 465 (Indy loop) was a traffic jam so it took close to an hour to just go a few exits. Finally we made it to 31 where we would be for a few hours. Somewhere south of South Bend Indiana Mitchell got tired and wanted someone else to drive, so it was my turn to drive. I drove from there to Michigan's Adventure (about 3 hours). I had to deal with Burger King messing up my order, everyone else asleep and me being bored, Michigan people who drive 10 under the speed limit, and a raging semi who was stalking my car for most the drive. But I heard the GPS say to exit off some road and I looked at the GPS and saw the amazing checkered flag which means arriving to destination! As I was exiting, I saw a sign that just said "amusement park --->" and the GPS said to go to opposite way. I took the GPS's advice and before I knew it I saw Shivering Timbers right infront of me!

 

I gave the parking toll man my Platinum Pass and he just kinda looked at it all weird and said "ehh go on" like he didn't know what it was. I parked very close to the entrance. When I walked up to that building they call an entrance, I feared my pass wouldn't scan (anyone who got their Platinum Pass from KI knows what I'm talking about) and of course it didn't! So far it hasn't scanned at MA, Carowinds, or KD. But luckily it scans at KI & CP.

 

As I walked into the park I was thinking how ugly it's entrance is. I'm used to seeing big fountains and a huge park icon, not a Snoopy store... The park doesn't have a Main Street at all. As much as I wanted to run to Shivering Timbers, I wanted it to be my 120th. coaster (and it just happened to be Mitchell's 100th. and Zach's 115th.) so we had to ride every single coaster at the park before it, and save it for last! We went to Zach's Zoomer first where we saw a full queue and a horrible crew (trains were dispatching every 5 minutes). So we decided to ride Little Dipper first which had no line. It was an alright kiddie coaster, overall 1/10

 

Corkscrew had a full queue so we decided to head on back to Thunderhawk. You'd think the newest coaster that happens to be a bright color and inverted, and looks very nice from the midway would attract people to it. Somehow, it doesn't. There were only a few people in the station, most of which were in line for the front seat. I decided to ride in the back seat for some reason. Even though I've heard it's extremely smooth for an SLC, I was scared it would be rough. To my surprise, everyone was right. This was extremely smooth. Not once did I hit my head against the restraint. I liked it better than the Batman coasters (just ride wise, I do rank Batmans over it because of the theming though). Overall 8/10

 

I hadn't studied the park's layout too much like I do with just about every other park, so I was kinda confused when I realized the area by Thunderhawk doesn't connect to Shivering Timbers. So I had to walk all the way back to the other side of the park. On the way I rode Corkscrew which wasn't as long of a line as earlier. It was smoother than Python at BGA, but of course the layout isn't too exciting, the location isn't good, and it has the ugliest building ever made as it's station. So I give it a 5/10

 

We also rode Zach's Zoomer on the way to Wolverine Wildcat. It was a walkon so I rode twice. I like Woodstock's Express at Carowinds better, but I rank Zach's Zoomer over Woodstock's Express at KI. Overall 5/10

 

Mad Mouse wasn't too far, and it was on the way to Wolverine Wildcat, so we waited in it's 5 minute line and rode it. It was my second Arrow Mouse coaster (1st. was the one that was at Myrtle Beach Pavilion), and I still like them better than the Mack ones (excluding Dark Knight.) Overall 5/10

 

Now that we rode the not as good coasters at the park (well actually I liked Thunderhawk alot), it was time for the two best. Wolverine Wildcat was first. It had a half full queue, and only runs 1 train so the line was about 30 minutes. I rode in the second row, Mitchell and Zach rode in the front. I found it to be extremely smooth (I LOVE♥ the extremely soft padded seats!) and had a few pops of airtime. It's not a top 10, but it's still a pretty good coaster! Overall 8/10

 

I had to wait an extra 10 minutes for Zach and Mitchell since they rode up front. They said it was alright but too rough... Hmmmm. Oh well, it was time for SHIVERING TIMBERS!!!

 

As I entered the area named 'Timbertown' I noticed it was sadly the best area of the park. Not just because of the ride collection, but the landscaping and theming. I didn't care too much cause I wasn't going to be exploring it too much, I would be marathoning Shivering Timbers! Luckily it was a complete walkon minus the front row. Mitchell and I rode in the second to back seat. The coaster had amazing padded seats also! Instead of saying a quick opinion on it than give it's rating, I'm going to write a detailed report on it.

 

You make a quick left turn out of the station up to the lift. The ride stands 122' tall so it took about 30+ seconds to reach the top. The drop wasn't as steep as Voyage, but I'd guess it's probably somewhere around 58º? The bottom of the drops are smooth unlike Voyage. And also unlike Voyage, on the first few big hills you get EXTREME airtime! It's not insane ejector air, but it's not the B&M floater air, it's kinda inbetween. That airtime repeats it's self on the following hill. The next hill is much smaller so there is more airtime, this is one of the best hills on the ride! The next hill has great airtime as well, but not as much as the one before. The turnaround isn't too special, but it adds to the rides laterals. The dive out of the turnaround and back into the the out part of the back-n-out layout is insane. It's kinda like the 'spiral drop' on Legend. The airtime hill after that dive is really good, one of the best actually. Than comes the two worst parts of the ride, The double up-OUCH. Unlike the double up on Wolverine Wildcat, this one is taken much faster. And when your about to enter the second up, it feels as if the rides slams into the track head on and loses speed. You HAVE to brace yourself for this if you want to enjoy the rest of the ride. The next element is the trick-track. It's not rough, but it just isn't needed. It does not add to the out of control feeling at all, really it's just random banking that does nothing. The next few airtime hills don't offer as much airtime as the rest, but there still is airtime on them. What I love about them is that they take place in a tunnel like scene because of the lift hill's supports. This makes it seem as if you are going faster than what you really are. After those hills there is the only trim (which was off), and the on ride photo. Than the final element, the helix. It's an alright helix, but it doesn't offer much laterals and it creeps through it at the end. I wish they would of just made it turn into the brake run instead of a helix. So overall... this ride is amazing. I generally prefer wood over steel, and this ride ranks over every steel coaster I've ridden (yes better than I305), and ranks over all the wooden coasters I've ridden except Voyage. If this ride had a tunnel or two, and was in a better setting, I may rank it over Voyage. But obviously it doesn't have those, so Voyage is barley better than it! I give it a 10,563,936/10!

 

After my first ride on Shivering Timbers, we rerode 5 times, most in the same seat, but we also tried out the front seat. Most people like the front seat better on Shivering Timbers because it offers a little better airtime, but I like the back better because I love being yanked over hills. Mitchell and Zach both said the front was the best seat though.

 

I wanted to ride Thunderhawk and Wolverine Wildcat one more time before riding Shivering Timbers the rest of the day. So we waited like a billion hours for the train to come. I snapped some photos of Shivering Timbers from the train, but I guess your not supposed to bring your camera on the train... Anyways, the other train station is right next to Thunderhawk, so we rode it again. It was a walkon this time, but we decided to wait for the front seat. I liked the view better from the front, but I found the back seat to have no headbanging, and the front had a little bit of headbanging.

 

After Thunderhawk we walked towards Wolverine Wildcat. Since Corkscrew was a station wait, I rode it while they took photos. I rode in the front seat of the last car. It was a one train wait, but that was close to 10 minutes because of the employees. With the exception of Shivering Timbers & Thunderhawk's employees, all the rest of the ride opts. were extremely slow.

 

After Corkscrew I met up with Zach and Mitchell and we walked to Wolverine Wildcat. We rode in the back this time, it was just as smooth as before, but had a little more airtime. I got some ejector on the drop out of the lift hill, and than on the double down I got an extreme pop of ejector air! Once I got off, Zach was about to get on, so I rode with him.

 

Shivering Timbers was closed for some reason, so we had to find something else to ride. I went to the little area with the carnival rides and rode Tilt-a-Whirl, and Falling Star, both are some of my favorite carnival rides! Mitchell had really bad indigestion so he didn't ride. We all walked over to Shivering Timbers where it was still closed. I talked to the really friendly ride opt. who was standing at the entrance. We told her how amazing the coaster is, and how her crew is the best! As we were talking, the ride started testing! The got a call saying to open the ride and we were the first in line. A little kid kept saying he wanted the front seat, so we let him ride up there, and we rode in the second to back. Mitchell didn't ride any more for the day because he got sick. Shivering Timbers was just as amazing as before, and we ended up only getting to ride it 5 more times because the waterpark closed and all those people came back to the park. I ended the day with a front seat ride on Shivering Timbers and sadly the park closed so we had to leave....

 

At first I kept saying how bad Michigan's Adventure was and how I won't come back until they add another coaster, but than I rode Shivering Timbers. One ride on it alone was worth the 4 1/2 hour drive. And after that I fell in love with the rest of the park. It's still not too good of a park, and there are many things I don't like about it, but because of Shivering Timbers I can't wait to come back!

 

Ride count:

 

Shivering Timbers: 10

Wolverine Wildcat: 3

Falling Star: 1

Tilt-a-Whirl: 1

Sea Dragon: 1

Logger's Run: 1

Corkscrew: 2

Mad Mouse: 1

Little Dipper: 1

Zach's Zoomer: 2

Thunderhawk: 2

Train:1

 

Here are some of the photos I took

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Lol

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We got bored and made a list of the states we've been to, and I drew I305...

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Zach's Zoomer and it's long line

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Little Dipper

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Ripcord

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Ripcord & Thunderhawk

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Now for all of the Thunderhawk photos I took

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I liked it's queue line

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Pretty much empty station

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If only all the rest of the SLCs could be as good as Thunderhawk...

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The ride's entrance is set up nicely

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I really like it's sign

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If this was the same photo only of a different SLC, I'd write "ouch ouch ouch" as the caption... but this one is good

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Yumm

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I wander if we will ever see another SLC made only with Vekoma's new track/train design?

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SLCs are so neat looking

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Thunderhawk is the most photogenic ride at Michigan's Adventure

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Here is the ride's station, it has a somewhat rustic feel to it

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I felt a small amount of floater air on this hill/turn

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Lift hill shot!

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Here is a better photo of that hill/turn

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And another.. only this isn't as good in my opinion

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Kinda weird view of Thunderhawk

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I tried to take that photo they always use for SLCs, but I didn't do too good

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Kinda neat view of it's lift hill

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This is the immelman type inversion, it's not the best quality because I took it from near Corkscrew/Funnel of Fear

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And the very last photo of Thunderhawk!

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Now it's time for Wolverine Wildcat photos

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Here is the ride's big drop. I'm not going to say first drop, because the ride somewhat drops out of the station and in the tunnel

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Sign....

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How do they expect people to see this? It was in the grass by the tunnel, I took it from the queue

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Wolverine Wildcat isn't too photogenic

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Station shot

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One last shot of Wildcat, this is taken from the train

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Corkscrew photos now

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Here is Corkscrew from across the lake

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You get Arrow-time (airtime on an Arrow) in the second to last row

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Kinda reminds me of Goliath (SFMM/SFOG) and Carolina Cobra

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More Arrow-Time!

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I guess I forgot to take photos of the most photogenic part of the ride (corkscrews) so heres a photo of some weird lady wearing a dress (who wears dresses nowa days anyways?)

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Here is one last photo

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I forgot to take a photo of Mad Mouse's sign (is there even one?) so here are some photos of the ride

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Like I said earlier, I like Arrow mouse coasters better than Macks & Zamperlas (with the exception of Dark Knight)

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Haha look at the faces

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Logger's Run

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This area was hard to find, it's kinda hidden and forgotten

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Falling Star

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*look at the picture*

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Giant Wheel? I'm guessing thats it's name...

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And now for Shivering Timbers!

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Shivering Timbers from across a lake

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First drop

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Me trying to recreate my dueling Voyage shot with Shivering Timbers

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Here is the dueling Voyage shot if you were wandering

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Timbertown

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Probably the best landscaping in all of Michigan's Adventure

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On the way out I took a few photos, sorry I didn't get out of the car and take the really cool view with those ponds in it...

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Until next time, these will have to do!

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Bye! Thanks for reading!

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I think you reminded me how much fun Thunderhawk and Timbers can be! What a great report, amazing photos!

 

I really wish Michigan's Adventure would build a path from Thunderhawk to Shivering Timbers, the walk around the lake takes quite a bit of time... (Hopefully sometime in the near future) And I still think Demon Drop should have come to Michigan's Adventure...

 

But once again, amazing report, glad you had an awesome time, and Thunderhawk is still as smooth as a baby's bottom!

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Is thier any reason why this SLC is so much better then all the others? Was it this way when it was at GL or did Cedar Fair do something to smooth up the ride?

 

I seem to remember it being above average while it was at Geauga Lake too. First off I think how "smooth" it is, is often over stated. Saying it's the best Vekoma SLC isn't really saying all that much.

 

Nice report. It makes me smile to see Michigan's Adventure get some love. It seems that everyone is always bashing on it. Yes it's lacking in some departments but I don't think this park is half as bad as some would have you believe.

 

I'm really glad you liked Shivering Timbers. It is an amazing ride.

 

I was just at the park today for Timbersfest and will be writing up a report myself sometime next week or so.

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I took the kids up Michignan's Adventure last summer after we had alredy spend 3 days at Cedar Point and another day at Kings Island. My kids were 11, 13 and 14 at the time. The kids had the most fun at MA out of the 3 parks. I think part of it has to do with the park being a little smaller with less walking and also the nice collection of flat rides.

 

We were getting insane amounts of airtime in the front seat of Shivering Timbers. It was running pretty smooth when we were there.

 

The park wasn't too crowded and most rides were walk ons except the Mad Mouse. My middle son is sort of a chicken when it comes to roller coasters but he loves Zach's Zoomer and the Mad Mouse. A few years ago when we were there he rode Zach Zoomer 20 times! I prefer it over the one at Kings Island. It just seems to have a little more pop to it.

 

The ride the kids got hooked on the last time was the Falling Star. They wanted to ride that over and over which caused my shorts to get a hole in my wallet pocket.

 

Jim

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Wow I am surprised everyone thinks it was smooth! I didn't see Thunderhawk as being much smoother than other ones I have been on (except for T2). The smoothest one ever, I think, is Hangman at Wild Adventures. I could not believe the smoothness of that one! At Timbersfest, we rode Thunderhawk once in the front during ert and once near the back during the day and that was enough. Wolverine Wildcat, however, was running better than ever before! I believe we rode it 4-6 times and we were the dorks in the front of the back car that made the "Woo!" sound on every drop! (Mocking the Simpsons episode that shows the out of town coaster weirdos)

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