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Photo TR: Lagoon's Opening Day 2014


rcdude
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Over my spring break a couple weeks ago, I went on a ski trip to Park City, Utah with my dad. We skied a day each at Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons Resort, with a third day planned for Snowbasin (which unfortunately got cancelled). Although conditions weren't the greatest, we still had fun skiing and got some fresh snow. While the main purpose of the trip was to go skiing, I discovered that we would be in Utah on Lagoon's opening day. I talked to my dad and we decided to spend a half day at Lagoon before driving home on Saturday, March 29th.

 

Lagoon is one of those parks I've been interested in visiting for some time, but it is so far out of the way that I didn't know when I'd get a chance. The park is Utah's only true amusement park, and is located about half way between Salt Lake City and Ogden. In terms of size, it is a mid-size park, with 9 roller coasters and about two-dozen other adult rides (plus a large kids area). Admission was around $50, a very reasonable price.

 

We arrived at the park about 9:45 A.M. for a 10:00 A.M. opening. Once the park opened, we headed straight to Wicked, the largest of Lagoon's coasters. As expected on opening day, Wicked was a little delayed opening, but after about 15 minutes the ride opened and we got on the first car of the season.

 

Ride Reviews:

 

Note: My rating system is as follows:

 

A: One of the best rides I've been on, at least for it's type. This is generally reserved for my top 30 coasters or top 10 in a different category. In order for a ride to receive an A from me, it must be a must ride and worth any length of line.

 

B: A very good ride that isn't quite a must ride, but is still something that his highly recommended. I typically give a B to attractions I really like but would be willing to skip if the line was excessive.

 

C: A ride that is decent but not worth a significant wait. These are rides that are fun but aren't really anything special.

 

D: A ride that is somewhat mediocre, but still worth riding if you've never done it before. This is typically the rating I give to credit coasters and rides I wouldn't care to ride again.

 

F: A waste of time, a very uncomfortable ride, or something that just needs to be closed. I rarely use this rating, and reserve it for the worst of the worst. Note that I will not use this for kiddie/family attractions as I don't fall into that ride's target audience.

 

I will sometimes add special criteria to a rating (such as "compared to other Disney rides") or assign two separate ratings to a single attraction (typically for family/kiddie coasters). If nothing is stated, assume the rating applies to all rides of similar type (Roller Coaster, Thrill Ride, Dark Ride, Water Ride, etc.)

 

Wicked: Wicked is definitely Lagoon's best ride. It is a one of a kind Zierer Tower Launch Coaster, and while not as impressive as larger coasters it is still a very good ride. The coaster is smooth, the ride is somewhat intense, and there are a couple unique elements present. Rode twice thanks to a 5 minute single rider line, although the regular line still looked under 30 minutes. A-

 

Spider: I've been on a couple other Maurer Sohne spinners and excluding Crush's Coaster this is probably my favorite. Spinning was enough without being dizzying, although the ride was a little rough. This one had a bit of a line, only 4 cars running, and was experiencing technical difficulties, so I only rode once. B

 

Wild Mouse: A fairly standard Maurer Sohne Wild Mouse. This is probably the best of the three Maurer mice I've been on, but it's still nothing special. C

 

Colossus The Fire Dragon: I've heard that the old Schwarzkopf coasters are really good, but I was slightly disappointed by this ride. The first drop is good and the loops are great (and forceful), but after that the rest of the ride is simply a couple helixes. It was still fun and I did ride twice due to the lack of a line, but I still don't get all the praise Schwarzkopf gets (maybe I just need to try more of the custom designs). B-

 

Wild Kingdom Train: This was a fairly good train ride around the lake and past several animal enclosures. A good break after riding the coasters at the south end of the park. B

 

Jet Star 2: An old Schwarzkopf Jet Star 2 model. The ride is surprisingly intense given its small size, but the seating is somewhat uncomfortable and the park is very strict about the no single riders policy. This one also mainly consists of helixes. Overall, I thought it was just okay. C

 

Samurai: To my knowledge, Lagoon is the only park in the United States with a Top Scan. It's a shame, as these are really good rides. I'm not the biggest fan of inverting flat rides, but this is one of the best I've been on. B

 

Rocket: Rocket is two S&S attractions in one: a Space Shot named Blast Off and a Turbo Drop named Re-Entry. I wanted to ride Blast Off as no space shots exist near me, but unfortunately only Re-Entry was open. Somewhat underwhelming since I've got Supreme Scream at my home park, but overall a pretty standard Turbo Drop. C+

 

Bat: I've been on a couple other Vekoma mini-SLCs and found both of them okay. Unfortunately, Bat was brutal. Worst coaster at Lagoon by far. D-

 

Bombora: This is a decent family coaster with a unique design and surf-themed soundtrack. It's still just a family coaster, so it wasn't really worth the 25 minute wait, but it was at least better than Bat. B as a family coaster, C- compared to all coasters.

 

Terroride: One of Lagoon's old dark rides, this was great by the standards of cheesy old dark rides. Some of the scenes were actually full scenes instead of single props in a cage, and the ride was a little longer than I thought it would be. My favorite non-coaster ride that I tried at Lagoon and definitely worth the 15 minute wait. B compared to old-school dark rides.

 

Roller Coaster: Lagoon's 1921 John Miller woodie, this was a decent double out-and-back. The ride is a little rough, but certainly not bad for its age, and while not an airtime machine it did have a few small pops. Operations on this ride were probably the best in the park, with routine 45 second dispatches, so even with a full queue the wait was only about 20 minutes. C+

 

Log Flume: A pretty dull log flume with only one small drop. There was no line due to the temperature being around 60 degrees, which was fortunate as I would have been disappointed if I waited long for this one. D

 

Four rides were not ready for opening day: Boomerang Bumper Cars, Centennial Screamer (enterprise), Cliffhanger (top spin), and Sky Ride. Additionally, I was unable to ride Air Race due to technical difficulties and Dracula's Castle due to not finding it until just before leaving.

 

Overall, I had a pretty good half-day at the park. I liked Lagoon quite a bit, and it somewhat reminded me of Knott's Berry Farm before Cedar Fair took over. The park doesn't have the biggest or most intense rides, but for a locals' park the selection is perfectly adequate. While I wouldn't make a trip out to Salt Lake City just to return, if I'm ever in the area again during the park's operating season I'd love to return. Ideally, I'd like to be able to spend a full day at the park to check everything out and visit the included waterpark. Plus, if the new coaster for 2015 is anything like what the rumors suggest, Lagoon could have a travel-worthy ride.

 

Pictures:

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Welcome to the middle of nowhere, Utah.

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This is not the Great Salt Lake.

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It was cold and cloudy all day at Park City. By lunchtime, it had started to snow a bit.

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The top of Park City Mountain Resort (well, the top of the main mountain at least).

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Time to head down the slope.

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Park City has old mining equipment scattered around the mountain. This particular remnant was located by the base of the Thaynes chair.

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An old conveyor belt for transporting ore uphill.

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Park City Mountain Resort. We stayed right at the base of the mountain.

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The Eagle runs are where Olympic training takes place. Shame they're not open to the public, as they look quite good.

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The next day we went skiing at Canyons Resort and were greeted by several inches of fresh snow.

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The view at lunch during a break between snow showers.

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The drive is actually pretty scenic once you get past Nevada. It's a 10 hour drive from Orange County, CA to Salt Lake City, UT, but I've never minded it.

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A shot of downtown Park City. I recommend checking it out if you visit the area, even though it isn't quite as historic as it's made out to be.

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Fast forward to Friday afternoon. Since we were staying up in Ogden, we ate dinner at the Burger Bar (which my dad had seen on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives). For a basic burger place, it was pretty good, but the best part was the milkshakes.

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Spider was next. It's a standard model but still a really fun ride.

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Do not raise your hands on this ride (or Jet Star 2, where you will be yelled at). There are several tight clearances.

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The Wild Kingdom Train approaches. Unlike some parks, this one is an actual steam train.

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The Bat through the trees. My dad snuck into this picture (he's the guy in red in the lower right corner).

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Lagoon is mostly one long midway. I'm sure it looks nice once all the trees have leaves on them.

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Seriously, the park looks really nice. I wish the Sky Ride had been open so we could have seen the park from above.

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The one and only drop on the Log Flume. I don't know exactly how tall it is, but it didn't feel more than 30 feet.

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Lagoon also has a river rapids ride, but at 60 degrees and with a 10 hour car ride I didn't want to get soaked.

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They don't. The whole back section of the park is western themed with old mining equipment.

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I'm not sure what that is, but a dead end means it's time to turn around.

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I wasn't aware Lagoon had two train rides.

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This is the rest of the Log Flume. Really, it was only about a 3 minute ride.

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The other side of the bridge, with the Log Flume's only drop.

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This picture contains more trees than are present in the average Cedar Fair park.

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A section of the park is named Pioneer Village and is themed to an old west town. Somewhat reminiscent of Knott's Ghost Tow.

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At the far end of the street is a clock tower.

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This was one of the few buildings we checked out in detail. Inside was a model railroad museum. Unfortunately, the multi-level railroad display was off.

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I will end with a picture of Lagoon's lagoon. Thanks for reading, and go check out this park if you ever find yourself in Utah. It's definitely worth a visit.

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Tiger enclosure. The animal enclosures here are pretty basic, but none of the animals looked neglected. I do wish you could see them from somewhere other than the train.

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Yes, Lagoon has a waterpark. It looked fun but relatively basic by today's standards.

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Colossus the Fire Dragon. Better than my local Colossus for sure.

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Basic Wild Mouse. Nothing to see here.

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It doesn't fly over the top of the tower, but it is moving fast enough to give good airtime all the way down.

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First ride of the day...Wicked. Easily the best coaster at the park.

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Okay, I know you're all here for Lagoon. Here we are at Utah's only amusement park.

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Schwarzkopf certainly used an interesting chain lift mechanism on this coaster. The train actually moves forward and attaches while guests are loading.

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Fire Dragon lives up to the Hype during the Summer or in the rain, Wild Mouse is also the only one with a Tunnel, and Roller Coaster runs like a bat out of hell in the rain. Samurai is a Shadow of what she was like when she first opened. There's just no way to describe the chaos of those first ride cycles with the Mondial guys operating it in Manual. Cycle 6 is still the best though. Hopefully you can visit again sometime during the Summer when the park doesn't look so dreary. Also, Pioneer Village is a Museum, so it's not just theming. The Coin Museum, Armory, Music Hall, and Carriage Hall feature spectacular collections. There are also only Three Nickelodeons left in the world, and Lagoon has the only one on Public Display.

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^No matter how much you have tried to defend Roller Coaster in the past, I really don't see how the ride runs in the rain should impact how someone likes a ride. NTAG is my favorite roller coaster rain or shine, and it doesn't rely on the weather to produce the insane airtime. Yes, Roller Coaster may have a pop of airtime here and there, but I personally believe that it has never been a standout ride. It is just really rough and barely has what B&M calls floater airtime. Is it a good ride? Absolutely! Is it this awesome ride that everyone should put on their bucket list because it is that awesome? Personally, I don't think so. I have never heard anyone get off that ride and start raving about it. I'm sorry, but it really is just mediocre at best.

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Thanks for the TR. Looks like a fun midsize park with a mostly German coaster selection...

 

Well one can raise the hands in a Double-Loop but one should have them down again inside the helices, have seen some riders banging their hands badly on them here. Thats why later Schwarzkopf coasters got those shoulder clamps.

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Bombora had a 25 minute wait? Most of the time you don't even have to wait 5 minutes for the ride. The longest would be 15 when it opened.

Spider is a maintenance nightmare from what I'm told. While it's a favorite for many, the ride has many burdens which is why there's the long going rumour of Lagoon selling it.

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I have to agree about the Bat. It is awful.

 

Thanks for the TR.

 

EDIT:

 

I may be biased towards somethings about Lagoon (My parents actually met while working at Lagoon, my dad ran the original Roller Coaster and my mom ran the Jet Star back in the late 70s.) But I love riding Jet Star. I know it is rough and I hate the no single rider stipulation, but it is probably my favorite ride at the park after Wicked.

 

I like Rattlesnake Rapids though I wish it was a longer ride (as most rapids rides I've ever been on have been way too short.)

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I think it's time for a few responses:

 

I'd love to see this park at some point...but if I drive there I might as well make a road trip out of it and check out Silverwood as well!

 

Silverwood is actually nowhere near Lagoon (it's a good 11 hours northwest). You'd be better off doing the Colorado parks, Las Vegas, and perhaps Cliff's Amusement Park (if you're up for the drive) if you want to make a trip out of a Lagoon visit.

 

Thanks for sharing! All in all Lagoon seems like a really fun park.

 

You're welcome. Lagoon is a fun park. I'd definitely recommend visiting for anyone in the area.

 

Fire Dragon lives up to the Hype during the Summer or in the rain, Wild Mouse is also the only one with a Tunnel, and Roller Coaster runs like a bat out of hell in the rain. Samurai is a Shadow of what she was like when she first opened. There's just no way to describe the chaos of those first ride cycles with the Mondial guys operating it in Manual. Cycle 6 is still the best though. Hopefully you can visit again sometime during the Summer when the park doesn't look so dreary. Also, Pioneer Village is a Museum, so it's not just theming. The Coin Museum, Armory, Music Hall, and Carriage Hall feature spectacular collections. There are also only Three Nickelodeons left in the world, and Lagoon has the only one on Public Display.

 

I do buy that Fire Dragon (and Wicked) are probably a bit faster in the summer, but unfortunately I can only judge rides based on my personal experience. Didn't know that about Wild Mouse...I assume you're restricting it to the US as I've seen pictures of international rides with tunnels. I really would like to visit in the summer and spend a full day at the park, as there are a number of rides I would like to try but missed out on and I'd like to spend more time exploring Pioneer Village (we only had time to walk down the street and back).

 

Also, once again, thanks for all the advice you gave me before my visit. Although I didn't quite do everything I planned, it certainly helped.

 

^No matter how much you have tried to defend Roller Coaster in the past, I really don't see how the ride runs in the rain should impact how someone likes a ride. NTAG is my favorite roller coaster rain or shine, and it doesn't rely on the weather to produce the insane airtime. Yes, Roller Coaster may have a pop of airtime here and there, but I personally believe that it has never been a standout ride. It is just really rough and barely has what B&M calls floater airtime. Is it a good ride? Absolutely! Is it this awesome ride that everyone should put on their bucket list because it is that awesome? Personally, I don't think so. I have never heard anyone get off that ride and start raving about it. I'm sorry, but it really is just mediocre at best.

 

THIS!!! I get a bit annoyed when people talk about how much better a ride is under certain conditions or in a specific seat. In my opinion, all rides should be judged in a middle seat on an ideal park day (mostly sunny, 70s or 80s). In any case, out of over 250 coasters there are only two I've experienced where the ride experience changed drastically based on conditions: Apocalypse and Boulder Dash. While it's possible Roller Coaster could be a B- ride instead of a C+ under rainy conditions, I wouldn't consider that enough of a change to really be noteworthy. I personally rank it comparable to Yankee Cannonball at Canobie Lake Park (good but not great), and based on it's Mitch Hawker ranking (83) most enthusiasts seem to consider it a fairly average wood coaster.

 

Thanks for the TR. Looks like a fun midsize park with a mostly German coaster selection...

 

Well one can raise the hands in a Double-Loop but one should have them down again inside the helices, have seen some riders banging their hands badly on them here. Thats why later Schwarzkopf coasters got those shoulder clamps.

 

Six of the park's nine coasters are German. The only ones that aren't are Bat (Dutch), Bombora, and Roller Coaster (both American). Many people put their hands up on the first drop of Colossus but almost everyone lowered them in the loops. On Jet Star 2 (not pictured), the operators would repeat "Do not raise your hands" over and over if someone put them up, as that ride has some insanely tight clearances.

 

Bombora had a 25 minute wait? Most of the time you don't even have to wait 5 minutes for the ride. The longest would be 15 when it opened. Spider is a maintenance nightmare from what I'm told. While it's a favorite for many, the ride has many burdens which is why there's the long going rumour of Lagoon selling it.

 

Bombora had only one train running, the queue was overflowing, and the operators weren't quite sure how to run it yet (90 second dispatches for a 16 person lap bar only train, and they had to call maintenance a couple times because they couldn't manually release the restraints). With two trains and efficient operators, the wait would have probably been about 10 minutes. I've heard the rumor about Spider, and despite the maintenance issues I would be surprised if the park got rid of it as that was the most popular coaster in the park (even Wicked had a shorter line). Perhaps Maurer Sohne could come in and do a complete overhaul of the ride.

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AJ, didn't mean to sound like I was defending Roller Coaster at all, because it is definitely not a Top 50 Coaster. M point was that anyone who has operated a coaster knows how they warm up during the day and even season. Having operated both Roller Coaster and Dragon, I've seen Roller Coaster run 19 Seconds Faster in a Monsoon, which it probably was running about 2 Minutes, up from 1:45 during the summer, as it was for you. Fire Dragon will also run 15 seconds faster in the rain opposed to dry. I've had some amazing, for it, Rides on Roller Coaster with bruises from both Double Ups and the Double Down, and again, my personal experiences on her, for her.

 

Maurer can't really fix Spider and the cost to do so would be more trouble than it's worth. Both Santa Cruz and Knoebel's have taken a gander and kicked Spider's tires and passed. Unlike most parks, Lagoon won't sacrifice the ride experience to save a few bucks. If they did, Jet Star 2 would have been gone in '94. Instead of Trimming Spider to death, which would actually be worse on the Structure and Chassis than it already is, they've looked into a New and Larger Similar Ride that supposedly Maurer has been shopping around. Lagoon has already designed and built a new positioning arm system that works infinitely better than the old one as it is.

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I think it's time for a few responses:

 

I'd love to see this park at some point...but if I drive there I might as well make a road trip out of it and check out Silverwood as well!

 

Silverwood is actually nowhere near Lagoon (it's a good 11 hours northwest). You'd be better off doing the Colorado parks, Las Vegas, and perhaps Cliff's Amusement Park (if you're up for the drive) if you want to make a trip out of a Lagoon visit.

 

I'd rather drive the 11 hours from Lagoon to Silverwood to ride good coasters than drive 7 hours to Denver to ride crappy coasters.

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I think it's time for a few responses:

 

I'd love to see this park at some point...but if I drive there I might as well make a road trip out of it and check out Silverwood as well!

 

Silverwood is actually nowhere near Lagoon (it's a good 11 hours northwest). You'd be better off doing the Colorado parks, Las Vegas, and perhaps Cliff's Amusement Park (if you're up for the drive) if you want to make a trip out of a Lagoon visit.

 

I'd rather drive the 11 hours from Lagoon to Silverwood to ride good coasters than drive 7 hours to Denver to ride crappy coasters.

Both Lagoon and Silverwood are out of the way for travelers. Las Vegas with their parks is a much better trip to plan around with Lagoon. The surrounding places for Silverwood lack and doesn't give a full trip unless you camp in the mountains or go to the resort I found up there in Coure 'de Lane. In the surrounding Salt Lake area, there's Cowabunga Bay, Loveland's Living Planet Aquarium, and Hogle Zoo if your just looking for other amusements. Also right across the highway from Lagoon is a new shopping area which would be a nice place to get a bite to eat while visiting Lagoon.

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AJ, didn't mean to sound like I was defending Roller Coaster at all, because it is definitely not a Top 50 Coaster. M point was that anyone who has operated a coaster knows how they warm up during the day and even season. Having operated both Roller Coaster and Dragon, I've seen Roller Coaster run 19 Seconds Faster in a Monsoon, which it probably was running about 2 Minutes, up from 1:45 during the summer, as it was for you. Fire Dragon will also run 15 seconds faster in the rain opposed to dry. I've had some amazing, for it, Rides on Roller Coaster with bruises from both Double Ups and the Double Down, and again, my personal experiences on her, for her.

 

Ironically, that's really all you do, though. Just defend Roller Coaster. Robb has said before that airtime and ejector air are good, but then there is bad ejector airtime. The kind that will give you bruises. That's really not something that you should define as a selling point. Especially since those bruises could be caused by the fact that Roller Coaster is just a rough ride, even for its age.

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AJ, didn't mean to sound like I was defending Roller Coaster at all, because it is definitely not a Top 50 Coaster. M point was that anyone who has operated a coaster knows how they warm up during the day and even season. Having operated both Roller Coaster and Dragon, I've seen Roller Coaster run 19 Seconds Faster in a Monsoon, which it probably was running about 2 Minutes, up from 1:45 during the summer, as it was for you. Fire Dragon will also run 15 seconds faster in the rain opposed to dry. I've had some amazing, for it, Rides on Roller Coaster with bruises from both Double Ups and the Double Down, and again, my personal experiences on her, for her.

 

Ironically, that's really all you do, though. Just defend Roller Coaster. Robb has said before that airtime and ejector air are good, but then there is bad ejector airtime. The kind that will give you bruises. That's really not something that you should define as a selling point. Especially since those bruises could be caused by the fact that Roller Coaster is just a rough ride, even for its age.

I was simply explaining the variables. When you have operated a ride for many years and ridden it as much as I have, you get to know her on a completely different level. That includes being part of the "Push Crew" in March. I know all about good air and bad and have experienced both on Roller Coaster. The hill up into East Curve has been bad since about the 1998 rebuild and is like Jackyll and Evil Jackyll and on the flip side some amazingly smooth rides in a Monsoon. I'm sorry if explaining some things and sharing some of my personal experiences seems like I'm defending the ride, as always, your experience will vary.
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The Roller Coaster is such a gem for Utah and Lagoon. It's by far my favorite coaster in the park. Lagoon has such a vast history and love where they are taking things concerning the upgrades and ride development. I want to add that when the greenery is grown in during the summer on Rattle Snake Rapids, I think that it is truly one of the best rapids rides out there concerning pacing, rapids and hidden gadgets/waterfalls.

 

Also, going off the ride tangent I will say that coasters in the rain are pure bliss (unless the thing is a speed demon then it just hurts). I was fortunate to ride The Beast and The Voyage dry and wet. I'd take wet any day!

 

Great TR, BTW. Thanks for sharing your experience and the photos!

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^Thanks. While I wouldn't consider Roller Coaster the best coaster at Lagoon (I'd rank it fourth behind Wicked, Spider, and Colossus), it was still a good ride and beats out a number of newer wood coasters on my list.

 

AJ, didn't mean to sound like I was defending Roller Coaster at all, because it is definitely not a Top 50 Coaster. M point was that anyone who has operated a coaster knows how they warm up during the day and even season. Having operated both Roller Coaster and Dragon, I've seen Roller Coaster run 19 Seconds Faster in a Monsoon, which it probably was running about 2 Minutes, up from 1:45 during the summer, as it was for you. Fire Dragon will also run 15 seconds faster in the rain opposed to dry. I've had some amazing, for it, Rides on Roller Coaster with bruises from both Double Ups and the Double Down, and again, my personal experiences on her, for her.

 

As an engineering student, I know that there are many, many variables that can affect a ride. Naturally, some will have a massive impact (such as wet tracks vs dry tracks) while others may be unnoticeable to a rider (such as one or two less people in the train). As you've personally operated both rides and experienced them in many conditions, I don't doubt what you say. My point was simply that I don't think a ride should be judged based on how it can run, only how it typically runs. Heck, if I rated every coaster on a best case scenario GhostRider would still be a top ten coaster on my list.

 

Also, I don't care what causes it, but any ride that leaves a mark automatically gets at best a C- from me. No decent amusement park ride should cause any type of damage to riders.

 

Maurer can't really fix Spider and the cost to do so would be more trouble than it's worth. Both Santa Cruz and Knoebel's have taken a gander and kicked Spider's tires and passed. Unlike most parks, Lagoon won't sacrifice the ride experience to save a few bucks. If they did, Jet Star 2 would have been gone in '94. Instead of Trimming Spider to death, which would actually be worse on the Structure and Chassis than it already is, they've looked into a New and Larger Similar Ride that supposedly Maurer has been shopping around. Lagoon has already designed and built a new positioning arm system that works infinitely better than the old one as it is.

 

I'm guessing this is the reason SCBB went with a new model rather than purchasing Spider. Hard to say which ended up better for them . I know there's been a rumor going around about Alton Towers selling Sonic Spinball to Lagoon as a Spider replacement, which would be great if it fits (I'm guessing it would if part of the parking lot is used).

 

I'd rather drive the 11 hours from Lagoon to Silverwood to ride good coasters than drive 7 hours to Denver to ride crappy coasters.

 

Really, there isn't a single decent coaster in Denver? Cyclone and Twister II both look like fun rides. I guess I'll find out in June since I have to drive to Lincoln, Nebraska for a school event and plan to stop at Elitch Gardens and Lakeside on the way back.

 

Both Lagoon and Silverwood are out of the way for travelers. Las Vegas with their parks is a much better trip to plan around with Lagoon. The surrounding places for Silverwood lack and doesn't give a full trip unless you camp in the mountains or go to the resort I found up there in Coure 'de Lane. In the surrounding Salt Lake area, there's Cowabunga Bay, Loveland's Living Planet Aquarium, and Hogle Zoo if your just looking for other amusements. Also right across the highway from Lagoon is a new shopping area which would be a nice place to get a bite to eat while visiting Lagoon.

 

For a strictly amusement park trip, Silverwood is probably the better option. Depending on how far you're willing to go, you've got Calaway Park, the Washington parks, Playland, the Oregon parks, and if you're really up for it Galaxyland. Granted, all of these are small parks, and most aren't that great (I did Wild Waves and the Oregon parks last summer...nothing special with one good but not great coaster between the three of them), but the quantity is there. If you're not going specifically for amusement parks, but would like to visit one, or you're not willing to make long drives, Lagoon is definitely better. There's easily several days worth of stuff in the Salt Lake area, so it would be relatively easy to make a Lagoon visit into a long weekend trip. Also, I wouldn't really consider Las Vegas a theme park destination as all they've got is one small 1/4 day park and an overpriced, mediocre Togo (okay, there's Desperado 45 minutes away, but that still isn't at all travel worthy).

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The only problem is there is no "Typical" Cycle, especially with Wood Coasters. They literally change from cycle to cycle and hour to hour, as you know, so you just kind of have to take what you get, and I'm sure I would have been even more critical of it than you. lol Some times the hill up into East Curve can be Brutal and extremely violent and other times not so bad in the same seat just an hour later. It's really what I love about Wood Coasters...the Changes.

 

Lagoon's Owners won't buy Used Rides and the Layout is said to be a Brand New Base Frame Model being shopped around by Maurer. The Expansion of the Pad has already been planned 20ft to the East. I'd really love to give Undertow a Spin, to see the difference between the V3.0 and V4.0 SC-2000.

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Ironically, that's really all you do, though. Just defend Roller Coaster. Robb has said before that airtime and ejector air are good, but then there is bad ejector airtime. The kind that will give you bruises. That's really not something that you should define as a selling point. Especially since those bruises could be caused by the fact that Roller Coaster is just a rough ride, even for its age.

Roller Coaster is by far NOT a rough ride for it's age. The roughest points are the turns, which is basically a shuffle. With the current rebuild they are doing every off-season to a section at a time, the ride has become much more tolerable. Bat is much more of a rough ride than Roller Coaster.

 

For a strictly amusement park trip, Silverwood is probably the better option. Depending on how far you're willing to go, you've got Calaway Park, the Washington parks, Playland, the Oregon parks, and if you're really up for it Galaxyland. Granted, all of these are small parks, and most aren't that great (I did Wild Waves and the Oregon parks last summer...nothing special with one good but not great coaster between the three of them), but the quantity is there. If you're not going specifically for amusement parks, but would like to visit one, or you're not willing to make long drives, Lagoon is definitely better. There's easily several days worth of stuff in the Salt Lake area, so it would be relatively easy to make a Lagoon visit into a long weekend trip. Also, I wouldn't really consider Las Vegas a theme park destination as all they've got is one small 1/4 day park and an overpriced, mediocre Togo (okay, there's Desperado 45 minutes away, but that still isn't at all travel worthy).

I never said Las Vegas is a theme park destination, but with what it does offer with it's multiple rides and parks, I would say it would make an easier trip to add to a Lagoon trip than Silverwood. For a strictly amusement park trip, Silverwood would make the cut. However, many people would want more than just an amusement park or two in their planned trip, and that was what I based my opinion on.

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