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Hersheypark - Springtime in the Park April 18 - 20th


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This past weekend I decided to take a trip to Hersheypark since everyone and their mother was going to KI. 2 Amazing Intamins were worth the 7 hr trip and missing out on a B&M In my opinion.

 

We arrived to our hotel around 5pm on Friday so we had time to relax before there preview plan for ticket holders of the next day were allowed into the park at 6:30 we arrived to the park with plenty time to spare. We went to Chocolate World to discover how insanely pack it seemed like but I believe that had to do with the amount of space available to move around with all of the renovations taking place at the moment. We turned around and headed to the side walk where Skyrush was next to take some pictures to kill some time.

 

By 6 a line was starting to form for the preview so we joined the line. They opened the line with a few min to go and we booked it straight to Skyrush. After getting off we saw that park was somewhat packed so we just decided to head towards Lighting Racer. The sun was starting to set and we decided to take some photos of Fahrenheit. I also stopped by the new Chickie's and Pete's stand to see what the big deal was about these Crab Fries, they were good but at almost $9 for a small bucket they are not that great. It was about 8 this time and we headed back by Great Bear since it seemed their dispatches were better then the other rides. We got off and decided to wait for Last ride on Skyrush we just happen to be apart of the last full train in row 8 but they had two trains worth of riders for the front row they allowed us to stay on for those and so we got a total of 3 rides with out getting off. Exhausted from the drive to the park we decided to head straight back to the hotel and order a pizza and crash.

 

Saturday morning we got to the park around 9:30 to see the line to get in was already to the Hershey Palace. I expected it to be busy because the last time i visited during STINP it was packed. We booked it to Skyrush again to get first ride but we arrived to a train halfway out of the station stopped on the lift. We stopped for a few min to see if anything was going to happen and the moved the train so it was entirely on the lift. I was about to leave but noticed I formed a line. We decided to give it about 10 more min, sure enough they got it going and opened the line for us. By this time our friend Cody met up with us. we got our lap on Skyrush then decided to head straight to Fahrenheit before it got a ridiculous wait. we then hit up Wild Mouse, Lighting Racer, Wildcat, and Sidewinder all with about 10 to 15 min waits. We arrived to Storm Runner after passing by earlier seeing them working on the launch track. It was about a 30 min wait not bad with the overflow barley open. We headed to Great Bear and waited another 30 min and then hit up Looper. By this time we decided to head out to grab some lunch. This was without stopping along the creek path and grabbing some more photos of Skyrush. We headed out to the Wendys by the park...You cant pass up a place with Coke Freestyle haha.

 

Before heading back into the park we decided to hit up the Factory Tour... we had to do this back way to the ride with all of the renovations to the rides queue and ride exit. We went back to the park to see that Skyrush was down. This time we didn't wait and decide to hit up Sooper again and head back to the back of the park. By this time my Knee started hurting , we headed to first aide and grab some Tylenol and take some photos of Fahrenheit. I took some of my favorite photos of the ride during this time. after doing Wildcat and Racer we decided to see the status of Rush again (yes we did plenty of walking back and forth) still seeing it was down but the train looked like it was done being worked on and was moved into its proper position (About 2hrs since we noticed it first was down.) We diced to go to comment and wait in its line and were going to get out of line if we see that if Rush was going to cycle. 5 min in line a train went around and we headed to the line forming out side the entrance 3 more cylces and they opened it up for us. After the ride we got back in line at Comet took a quick lap. My friend Cody mentioned that his friend was operating Great Bear and heard that a few Cedar Point operators were in the park and wanted to show us what Great Bear looked like without stacking sure enough they were kicking ass, props off to them the whole time we were in line they did not stack. It was awesome to see other operators care what others think about how they operate.

 

It was reach 9 and we were going to get last ride again on Skyrush and the same thing happened as last night. we headed out but we were invited to Red Robin with a few Hersheypark ride ops and hung out and shared stories and what not. Its funny to see how ride ops have some of the same rituals from park to park.

 

Sunday was more of a get as many rides in as possible so I didn't keep track of what we did in what order but we hit up the staples of the park all at least once RXC, the Tower, the monorail and most of the coasters once. then I marathoned Skyrush the rest of the time for a grand total of 18 rides in one day. Yes my thighs were begging for mercy but it was so worth it.

 

Overall this trip was a blast I had an amazing time and the operations were not terrible but I do give props to the Great Bear Crew that was operating SAT night and whoever was working Sky Rush all weekend you guys were amazing. the reason I mention Skyrush is the fact Saturday they were moving the line as well as they could with just one train available and on Sunday I had a brace on my knee and they were asking me if it had and hard material in it ( It's an Intamin thing to not allow any braces or cast if there are any 'hard' material in it) and the fact they were attentive enough to notice that under my long shorts brought a smile to face.

 

I'm only going to point out the rides were something stood out to me (Good or Bad)

 

Skyrush - amazing all weekend as usual except for the little hiccups on Sat. I know the restraints hurt but the ride is Insane and Ill gladly take a sore thighs over lackluster airtime. And to top the trip off we got the last train of the night on Sunday to ourselves.

 

Storm Runner - This crew was also kicking ass seems like they were ready to send a train out as soon as the system could reset (I know with dragster its like 72 seconds or something like that)

 

Fahrenheit - Every ride I have ever taken on this it seems like its riding on a bad wheel. esp through the Cobra Roll

 

Lighting Racer/ Wildcat - Running fairly smooth but that's a given since it is only the second weekend they have been open. and Racers new restraints looked cool, but my skinny self didn't notice the difference.

 

Great Bear - I do love a unique B&M since they are rare. and I forgot about the layout after the zero g Friday night and loved not knowing where I was going.

 

SDL- love this classic and it's forceful loop

 

Wild Mouse - I love the fact the hardly brake this. It flies through the switchbacks and it feels like it will come off the rails.

 

Now onto the photos these were all taken with my Galaxy S5 and was pleasantly surprised with how well it was able to take photos. then I edited the in Photoshop.

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great trip report! Seeing this really makes me wanna go back to Hershey...I had a fantastic experience there. Skyrush was awesome. Fahrenheit was my Fav though. But only barely. Storm runner was fun. And OMGosh I LOVED lightning racer!!! I was soooo fun!! Both sides!! Easily my #2 and 3 woodies! (I've ridden Toro and so thats my #1 woodie) But yeah I really wanna get back there. Catch up on the rides I missed. Didn't get to take a lap on Wild Mouse, SDC, Trailblazer, or Comet. And now Cocoa cruiser. All they need is a drop tower and I'm this close to bookin it over there! LOVE HERSHEY!

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Nice trip report. Glad I'm not the only one to notice Farenheit doesn't run well through the cobra roll. I always feel like that's a bad part of the ride because it doesn't run well through it. Could never really figure out why that stood out but the more I think about it the more I think you're right. Still can't wait to get back to Hershey this year!

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Skyrush was running amazing tho they only had 1 train ready. I can handle the the restraints. I dont get all the hate over the restraints. But they must be B&M fan's (I kid i kid ) It's the best ride I've ridden. Yeah, I have a slight bruise on my thighs but the pain was worth the 50 seconds of pure ejector air and twistieness.

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Ill gladly take a sore thighs over lackluster airtime.

This. This EXACTLY! And it's all the whimpy people that complain about it is why we can't have nice things and will probably never see another ride with as extreme airtime built in the USA.

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I just realized how weird Great Bear's drop looks to me. Are there any other Inverts with the same kind of drop?

 

If you're referring to that pre drop, then no. I always thought that was a great feature of Great Bear.

 

Great Bear was actually my first inverted coaster and it was pretty unsettling being that high up in the air with nothing below you. As enthusiasts we probably don't think about it but that pre drop section is a great way to maximize the potential of the inverted concept. It gives people a chance to realize how high up they are with no floor below them.

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Ill gladly take a sore thighs over lackluster airtime.

This. This EXACTLY! And it's all the whimpy people that complain about it is why we can't have nice things and will probably never see another ride with as extreme airtime built in the USA.

I have to admit, before I rode it that's the exact opinion I had. However, when I did ride it I was amazed at its awesomeness but, most of all, disappointed because of how much the restraints hurt me. From what I've heard, I guess some people tolerate it a lot more easily than others. My problem was that I wanted the enjoy the great ride but couldn't because they gave me serious pain. And this is not me being a pussy because I will tolerate some discomfort in exchange for a great ride but not some horrible pain. I have heard many saying that, with such an extreme ride, it will never be 100% comfortable and I agree with that up to a point because I don't think that we have to accept something like this. Would I rather have an ordinary yet comfortable ride instead? No, I wouldn't. But I seriously would like to see someone addressing this issue as I believe something can be done because the restraints, in my opinion, are simply poorly designed: they don't really adapt to the shaping of most legs, the area that holds you is too small and they should be further back. So when I complain it's not because I don't want to see more rides like that being built but simply because I would like it to be perfect. I ranked it 3rd in the MH poll and would have put it in first if it was minimally comfortable.

So if Hershey doesn't do anything about it, I would, at least, like to see intamin improving that aspect on their future rides. And these new lapbars the have been fitting to their new rides already seem an improvement.

This is just my personal opinion, so I don't really expect everyone to agree.

 

By the way, storm runner looks great with its new paint.

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To comment on the Skyrush restraint issue, I'm one of those people that can tolerate most restraints well as long as I'm getting something good in return for a little discomfort.

 

Skyrush for me more than makes up for the discomfort. The airtime you get is so incredible that I truly feel like the restraints are justified. I get that you can't have your hands up the whole time on this but I personally don't really do that anyway. I'm too distracted by the airtime to really notice any major discomfort until the end of the ride waiting to get back in the station.

 

I honestly have a bigger problem with Wildcat's restraints. They staple you like crazy mid-ride and it's not a comftorable layout on top of that.

 

All in all Skyrush is the best coaster I've ever ridden and I've been on El Toro, Maverick, MF and Boulder Dash. I understand the restraints aren't the most comftorable but try to distract yourself with the forces Skyrush delivers.

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^The thing is that I am distracted from the airtime and overall awesomeness of the ride by the pain. I find that the only way to avoid it is holding firmly onto the bars next to you that lead to the restraints. However, I am one of those people who likes to ride with their hands up and if I don't, I will never hold the restraints in a normal situation as I like to feel "loose" and kind of "deliver myself" to the coaster. So I don't really like that I can't do it here. But it does really depend on the person, I had no problems whatsoever with wildcat's restrains (even though I found the ride itself horribly rough) and also had no big issues with magnum xl's restraints either, while many do (I mean, they are uncomfortable, but I feel like I wouldn't penalize the ride for that, while with syrush...).

The thing is, I remember someone once saying (here) that in order to enjoy mantis you had to know how to ride it to which someone replied that whenever you have to "know how to ride" any coaster, it's never a good sign. Of course there are techniques that allow for minor improvements on some rides with slightly rough edges (like preparing yourself for the snap in an old B&M invert corkscrew and stuff like that) but you shouldn't have to. And that's how I feel about skyrush and the reason I complain is because I am quite frustrated that such a good ride (that would be undeniably my no one coaster if it didn't have this issue) has this partially ruining it (in my opinion). In fact, I do believe that it would have ranked higher in the MH poll if it weren't for that (even though it is only two years old) because it was just so much more intense and insane than anything I had ridden (and also for some more people) that I think it would have all the conditions to rank 1 (or at least in the top 3) and it didn't. And this is mainly an enthusiasts poll, not some random one.

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To each their own but I love putting my hands up and just letting the ride have its way with me. I love the feeling of being thrown around, and the feeling of holy sh*** I could die. I mean isn't that what coasters were built for. To make you feel like you were going to die and at the last moments pull you away from that moment? and if that involves a slight discomfort bring it on.

 

- Kyle "I like it rough" Allen

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I would concur that after about 20 rides on Skyrush it can get really tough to handle much more from the standpoint of dealing with the restraints. I also sympathize with those who can't deal with a particular ride due to certain issues like that that "kill" the ride for them, as for me there is another very popular Intamin (Maverick) that I can't deal with due to problems with the restraints (I can't seem to avoid getting my ears bashed to a pulp, especially riding in and towards the front). It does suck when you wish you could enjoy a ride but you can't tolerate some aspect of it. But with Skyrush, I can handle having my legs squashed far better than having my ears and head boxed in. It would be nice to see the restraints improved, but I doubt that will happen until Intamin comes up with something much better and perhaps one day in the future Skyrush will need a good train overhaul and they will replace the restraints.

 

That said, Skyrush is currently my #1 coaster, and the only one I've set foot on in the last 10 years that totally blew my mind. I'm so glad I only live 81 miles away from HP and I can't wait to get there this summer. I'm at 40 rides total on Skyrush and I'm hoping to perhaps double that (well, might have to aim for more of that this fall unless I happen to hit an uncrowded day this summer) this year. It's not easy to marathon on Skyrush (for reasons other than just crowds and long lines, as I swear this is about the only coaster that after a few rides I feel like I've spent an hour or more working out at the gym!) but it sure as heck is fun!

 

BTW, OP you have some really nice pics of Skyrush and the rest of the park.

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