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Photo TR: Pittsburgh to NYC - 6 parks in 6 Days


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Day 1 - Knoebels

Day 2 - Quassy

Day 3 - Six Flags New England

Day 4 - Lake Compounce

Day 5 - Rye Playland

Day 6 - Luna Park

 

Finally getting around to sorting through a week's worth of photos... Main goals of the trip were to get to Knoebels for Impulse (and the food - and especially for Phoenix), Boulder Dash, Bizarro, our first RMC and a ride on the legendary Cyclone! We also capped things off with a few nights in NYC for some sightseeing, shopping and of course Scott's Pizza Tour!

 

All in all the trip was a success - kids only missed 2 credits and we had no rain - but the heat was pretty bad in mid-August (as to be expected).

 

These pics won't cover every square inch of the parks - just the stuff that caught my eye when I decided to stop riding and pull the camera out - enjoy!

 

Day 1, Park 1 - Knoebels Amusement Park - Elysburg, PA

We were here to check out Impulse, ride The Phoenix and eat great food. Impulse was good, not great we all thought. We had done pretty much everything else at the park last visit so we took a mid-day break at the hotel for a quick dip to cool off. You can buy discounted books of tickets at Weis Markets in the area if you are going on a non ride-all-day day. As expected, had a great time at Knoebels - it's such a great park. Hoping to stop back in the fall - it has to be beautiful with all the foliage. Plus I'm sure a night train ride is even creepier then!

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There's that twisted mess of metal they call Impulse!

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Unfortunately for me this was the best part of the ride - the 90 degree lift hill.

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Restraints were comfy - no complaints there. Even had a booster seat insert for little ones!

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Leaving the station.

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I loved the color changing LED's in the station - nice touch.

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It's a lot of coaster crammed into a small area.

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Through the corkscrew.

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Straight down!

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Wheeee!

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Hands up!

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Going down.

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Neck-snapping fun!

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Fun first drop - great ride the whole family can enjoy - not extremely thrilling though.

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Oh yes - we are back at one of the greatest amusement parks around!

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So many little touches throughout the park - this park really preserves the past.

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So simple - yet so perfect for the park.

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Random swan swimming in the creek.

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One of many, many signs through the park.

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Love that homemade feeling to everything around the park.

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Lots of interesting characters with yes - more signs!

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One sign I don't mind seeing - just one of the best woodies around - hands down - or better yet, hands up!

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I wish all wooden coasters were as awesome as The Phoenix

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Filter time.

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Leave your mark on the bridge if you like.

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A picnic grove with candy cane supports - only at Knoebels.

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Our view from inside the Oasis where we had the best chicken meal - amazing food throughout the park.. And that white birch beer! Yum!

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One fantastic carousel.

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Didn't get a brass ring though.

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It still works! Amazing to see the love and care Knoebels has taken.

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Yes you will see dogs on leashes around the park and on the train, but not in the creek.

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I think there is a sign every 3 feet.

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There's another.

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Love the detail - because they couldn't just say 50 feet.

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That little creek has caused some big problems over the years. Not today though.

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A view from the covered bridge.

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Another view from the covered bridge.

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Ahhh - We stopped in here a lot.

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Fying Turns - what an accomplishment for the park.

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These one of a kind trains are a work of rolling art.

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Is there a better setting for a classic wooden coaster like Phoenix?

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Lots to look at as you peruse the park.

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Even a pretty butterfly arrives on cue.

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Oh that's pretty much how it feels too. Not for those with weak stomachs.

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The Flyers! Sails will be whipped today!

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What else does a ride op need? 1 chair, 2 fans and an internal combustion engine!

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Best flying scooters around.

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We're back for more Fascination! I didn't win the2 ball cover-all.

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More neat stuff - everywhere you look.

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Decorative signs...

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Warning signs...

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Food signs... (My favorite kind)

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Flood signs... (boooo!)

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Balloon-headed girl!

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Downdraft going up.

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I felt really awkward stopping to snap this pic - but I had too - it's just so Knoebels!

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Time for a ride on the Giant Wheel.

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Ferris wheel tire - just because.

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Great to see the rolling tree-covered hills all around and in the park.

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Great view of Impulse from here.

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That's a RollerCoaster Tycoon lift hill for sure.

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Sun dropping below the tree line.

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Around we go.

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Nice view of Downdraft.

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Time for an even more scenic ride.

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Crossing the road.

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Lots's of interesting things tucked up the hillside.

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Looks like it would be fun to walk down - but not up.

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Random silver skull impaled on footer bolt.

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Beautiful evening.

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It was a hot and hazy August evening.

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See there really is an amusement park down in those woods!

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Can you spot Phoenix?

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Lift hill wheels, lifting.

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Small but terrifying!

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The track work of Flying Turns is unbelievable.

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Like a work of art.

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Here they come!

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Why am I about to go into this human hamster wheel?!?

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A pair of girls counted spinning 82 times as they went around and around... 82 times!

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Knoebels has a totally different feel at night.

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That's all from Knoebels - time to get our night train ride and final ride on Phoenix!

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Balloon race all lit up.

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Rides really do run faster at night!

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The new LED package on the Giant Wheel looked great!

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Downdraft cutting through the night.

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Swings, swinging.

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Satellite at night.

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Day 2, Park 2 - Quassy Amusement Park - Middlebury CT

 

Bought the after 4PM 2 for $22 passes online which was a good deal. Wasn't expecting much from this park and really just wanted to get a ride on Wooden Warrior. Park seemed really crowded when we arrived though we only waited about 15 mins for Wooden Warrior each time - which isn't bad for having only 1 train. It was better than expected and a fun little ride. Rest of the park was carnival-like quality rides. Didn't head to the water park - but it was busy on this hot day. We were good after a few hours there. Oh - plan on zero cell service and no WiFi - I know - the horror! Definitely our least favorite park of the trip. Highlight of this stop was finding Maggie McFly's restaurants in the area - great stuff!

 

LOL- Restaurant is Called M a g g i e McFly's - it is auto-changed to Magnum - Love TPR!!!

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We almost parked in the park - this place was cozy to say the least.

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Ok - so far so good looks decent enough from here.

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For some reason we never made it to the bumper cars - kinda forgot about them.

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Coming soon to a Quassy near you.

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Then things got a little creepy as you moved back into the small park.

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So apparently the name was decided on by local school students - cool!

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Amusing signs in the queue.

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Our first glimpse of that Timberliner!

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More entertaining signage.

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Sexy train shot.

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Sexy brake run shot.

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Little pops of air near the end.

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Coming in - this thing took a solid minute to load in from the brake run - starting and stopping a lot.

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Front car.

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Lots of rivets and screw heads.

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A hands up ride for sure!

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Coming through.

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Headed out.

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Yeah - could have used Knoebels dress code here...

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Some hair-time and chest-hair-time - yuck!

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Please fly to Wal-Mart and buy a shirt.

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Even small drops can be scary.

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Nice little tunnel - all in all a fun little ride - better than we expected.

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Portable pirate ride...

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Beach area - looks nice here - but was not in person.

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A giant Quassy cock?

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They had one of these.

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You could rent a paddle boat if you wanted to bake out in the sun.

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Glamour shot.

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Now that's how you ride the Little Dipper at Quassy.

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Old and nostalgic train.

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Some nice horses on the carousel.

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Sea Serpent! Bonus points!

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Nice details and craftmanship.

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And a creepy Humpty Dumpty!

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This was new - no thanks.

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Was going to ride - but the ride cycle was very long and I was still recovering from the Looper at Knoebels.

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Scenic lake setting - that and Wooden Warrior were the best things.

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Now this ride freaked us out - those swings lean waaaaaaay back. Scary fun.

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Now that we were leaving we found the map - that you really don't need.

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Here's as close as we got to the water park.

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No drop tower credit today :(

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One last look at Wooden Warrior before we head out.

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Goodbye Quassy - see you again if you get another coaster.

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Day3, Park 3 - Six Flags New England - Agawam, MA

 

As far as Six Flags goes I was pleasantly surprised by SFNE. Clean park, nice layout, good assortment of coasters... Ride ops were great on the popular rides - still ran into a few slow moving ops. Only complaint - and obviously worse due to the hot weather - is that there is black asphalt EVERYWHERE (well except right near the front gate). Even at night the heat was radiating on the walk ways. Goliath was down which was a bit of a let down - that thing is massive! I'm no boomerang fan but that thing looked incredible.

 

We went right to Wicked Cyclone. Waited a few trains and WOW! RMC lives up to the hype - such great pacing - the ride is fun right up to the final brake run. Comfortable ride with some fun elements. First thing I thought was - I can't wait until they get their hands on Mean Streak. With such a large coaster there is so much potential. We got quite a few rides on it thanks to Platinum Flash Pass - pricey but we were able to walk on Wicked Cyclone all day.

 

Got to see what all the hoop-la was about Bizarro / Superman: RoS soon again... Verdict - boys loved it, girls thought - "meh". The lap bars were a little irritating but besides that I thought it was a great ride - especially for one that been around over 15 years. It's definitely a top tier coaster. Loved the view of the river and that you can walk around so close to the track.

 

We realized when we left the park for dinner that some residents open their yards for parking - it was only like $3... Little old lady was in her beach chair taking money. Better than the $25 that the park charges for sure... I was also surprised that the park was in a rural area - seemed to pass a lot of tractors pulling tobacco leaves which was cool.

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Still had this up from the day before - shame on them lol.

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Is this a court house or an amusement park?

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View from the parking lot bridge.

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Nice landscaping outside the front gate.

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We are in - pretty nice view down the main midway.

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I gave up waiting for Wicked Cyclone to enter the picture...

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Close enough - I need to go ride this thing!

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But wait - a shark!

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After losing our RMC cherry it was off to see this guy.

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Intamin sighting through the trees.

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Some cool elements (I'm not used to working theming - ahem, Cedar Point)

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Hey, I'm not the only one who was snapping photos that day!

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Nice location with the trees and the river nearby.

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Spinning mouse - seemed like a good idea at the time.

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Looks great from the ground - rode the shorter versions at other Six Flags - hell no to this monster.

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Some RMC goodness.

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First drop!

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Away they go!

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I know exactly where I was at 12:51 PM EST 8/17/15.

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What a massive structure - was down still...

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Some dark clouds creeping up behind Wicked Cyclone.

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Thunderbolt - painfully slow ops - not a horrible ride.

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Looks like someone might pop out a secret elevator.

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Nice carousel at the front of the park - with nice pavers instead black asphalt. Charming actually.

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A shot and drop tower all in one! Fun ride.

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So we stumbled across the train - up behind season pass processing - I think we woke the poor girl operating the train.

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Back down into the park.

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Headache coming in 3, 2, 1.

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What's that back there?

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Bizzaro heading back.

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Oh - what's this a B&M floorless. Was ok.

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I think the park GM is color blind - awful colors.

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Couldn't help but peaking back to see that fun little Intamin while sipping on a cold beer.

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One more.

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The turn around.

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And when you are ready for that perfect shot - and they send a test train. Fail.

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Hey it's a mini Millennium Force!

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Another S&S tower credit.

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Ride the Thunderbolt it said. So we did.

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Spooky - but spooky with air conditioning.

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I liked how all the rides had their "licenses" on display.

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Watch out for that cowboy!

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Tomahawk - the inside out Max-air / pirate ship ride thing. It was ok.

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Needed to get back over to the star of the park.

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Yep - Six Flags - well 7 if you count the US flag.

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These folks rolled up the hill..

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and turned right around...

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My wife informed me of the snickering by the folks walking by as I took a pic of a sewer grate.

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This little nook of the park was nicely themed - and actually no blacktop!

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Oh - so that's what they do... So, what do they do?

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It lived up to its name.

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It looks like it could just walk away and destroy a city.

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It was not to be this day though.

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Returning from dinner and figured a few folks would appreciate.

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Entering the tunnel in 3...

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2...

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1!

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Wild mouse with a much too long name.

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Bizzaro overload coming up... make up your own comments...

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And then there is the creepiest joker you've ever seen.

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That's a better view.

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They were VERY detailed with this Catwoman figure.

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Those poor souls.

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Tomahawk - all by it self up a dead end path.

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Time for some night rides on Wicked Cyclone to end the day...

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How tall do they need to make these things anyway?

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Quick night shot.

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Carousel looking nice all lit up.

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And that's all folks... Great time at SFNE!

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Day 4, Park 4 - Lake Compounce - Bristol, CT

 

Another hot and humid day - that's OK because we weren't planning a full day here and the park is on the smaller size. Overall impressions of the park - it's OK. Phobia next year will help the park out for sure. It seemed like the lake should have boats on it or something else. I guess they do a light show over it on certain days...

 

As for Boulder Dash - had mixed feelings - Front row ride was one of the best wooden coaster rides I've had - but in seats further back there were some painful moments that distracted from the ride. We didn't get a night ride - the park closed at 8 and we were out by 6 so either way sun would have been up... It seems that is something to experience. 1 train operations also made short lines seem to take a long time which again is supposedly the norm.

 

One thing that stood out was the park's re-ride policy for disabled guests. The ride op puts a green cone in line a person or two behind the current folks waiting in line to hold their spot. They then could ride twice in a row. One caveat is that if the person that is disabled does not ride then the other members of their group can not. We heard this when one woman had enough after 1 Boulder Dash ride - she ended up sticking it out for a second ride so her group could ride. Just never seen it done this way before.

 

We rode most flat rides and the log flume - nothing was too spectacular. Zoomerang I skipped - kids got their credit. Wildcat was horrible - thought I broke my back on that thing. Nice to look at but that's about it. Operations were good throughout the park and fresh cut fries were tasty. Again we skipped the waterpark so can't give any insight there.

 

On to the pics...

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Really no need for a map in this small park.

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Tunnel entrance - love them!

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Ok we are tall enough.

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Getting closer.

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Nice front entrance.

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Located at the base of a mountain.

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Creepy figures in the windows.

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Nice landscaping.

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That coaster back there looks good but it is very bad.

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One more beauty shot.

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That concludes our tour of the front gate.

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I spy a flappy bird up the hill! Yeah!

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We made it!

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So I've ridden the "number 1" steel - time for the "best" woodie

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Only blue train running today.

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Nice lift hill ride up the mountain.

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Here it comes! Hard to photograph this thing!

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Coming back - lots of airtime hills.

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Oh - there it goes!

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Drop tower credit - even though we don't keep count!

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There's more tree than coaster.

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Best part of the ride - should have stopped here.

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You poor, poor souls.

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It's all downhill from there.

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Ouch!

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Our turn to feel the pain.

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Their beautiful carousel.

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They had a billy goat! Ha!

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Didn't know that. Cool.

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Part of the kiddie area.

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Zoomerang - or no thanks.

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Nice waterfall in front of the pirate ship.

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Some Phobia signage throughout the park.

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Nice sparkly sign.

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I guess yellow jackets like mountain coasters - these were everywhere in the park.

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Back drop of the flyer ride.

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Nice paint job - did not ride - nothing beats Knoebels Flyers...

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We did ride this - nice but too short.

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Splashdown.

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Flume ride queue sign.

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Down for protein spill - rode it later. Good but no Skyhawk.

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Ferris wheel.

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There really are boulders here.

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This is what the side of the ferris wheel looks like.

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Boulder Dash station.

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Bottom of the first drop.

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And they're off!

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Nice to have so many trees around.

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Enterprise was down and I think is coming out.

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Frisbee ride was ok - I can still feel the restraint hitting my back.

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Walked by this several times but always seemed to be a line so never went in...

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Gargoyle shot.

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The Phobia display was still out.

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Ride map.

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Photoshop'ed ride pic.

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That non-descript white building back ther freaked us out on our way in - looks like some secret government building or missile silo.

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Quick - it's Boulder Dash!

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Through the ferris wheel shot.

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Coming into the station.

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Downtime.

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Getting ready to leave the station.

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Over the lift hill.

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Boulder Dash from across the lake.

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More views from the train.

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The lighthouse water slide thing looked neat.

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From the other side of the lake.

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Headed back.

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Now that's some nifty engineering.

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Just throw some footers on the boulders and build a coaster.

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We took the trolley back to where the rapids ride is and ski lift.

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Was down due to weather - too hot. 30 min round trip and worried about heat stroke.

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Here comes Boulder Dash!

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And just like that, they are gone.

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More cool footer-boulders.

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Some of the structure.

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More wood.

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See that speck of blue back in the woods?

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Here they come - the home stretch.

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The front will put a smile on your face.

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That triple up - crazy element.

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half way there...

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Almost.

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Goodbye!

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Day 5, Park 5 - Rye Playland - Rye, NY

 

Didn't have high expectations for this park as we made our way from CT to NYC but it turned out to be better than we expected. Even though most of the rides were just OK we found the park very welcoming and clean with good operations. Highlights were riding the infamous Dragon Coaster, the derby ride and the Zoltar machine! There are some unique flat rides, a fun old mill and a boardwalk / beach area too.

 

We got our first spin on a Zamperla flyer - and after the first lift hill it's all down hill from there - the inversions bring the pain for sure. The derby ride was fun - long cycle and higher speed than Cedar Downs at Cedar Point. The horses did not move back and force - but they didn't have to - there was enough speed to keep the ride exciting. You even have to put your left leg on the lowest peg and the right on the highest - plus the announcement over the loud speaker during the ride to "keep leaning to the left!" So that was pretty unique and cool.

 

The dark rides were about what you'd think they'd be - old hot smelly buildings with dated "animatronics". House of mirrors is something you don't see everyday anymore so that was neat. The wild mouse was typical and besides being historic the Dragon Coaster was a very forgettable ride.

 

The nice landscaping, tree-lined walkways and the old look / feel of the buildings kind of reminded me of Kennywood when I was growing up - this place definitely has one foot in the past. I was really expecting a lot worse but we had a nice time on the day we were there.

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Our first sighting from the parking lot - a Zamperla flying coaster.

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Your typical ferris wheel with gondalas.

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Ticket booth - we went for the all-day wristband.

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Our view when we entered the gates.

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We spied Dragon Coaster running.

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The old ticket booth looks like some medieval torture chamber.

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Have ____ today!

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Yes the "Oh my God!" moment that everyone who grew up in the 80's has - our kids were like WTF?

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Just a pretty park.

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Getting closer to the ride that sounds cooler than it is.

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Now maybe riding in those cars would have made for some excitement.

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Dragon Coaster and its 1 train - yes the wait was long even on this slow day.

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The derby building and gondola wheel.

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Bonus point for "smoke" coming out the dragon!

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A lot of parks wouldn't even have this - so it was nice to see the park pay attention to the small details.

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It's really hard to make this ride look exciting.

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There's the Dragging - I mean Dragon Coaster.

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Loved the old time architecture.

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Who doesn't love the design of the lift hill - and pretty much hate everything else about these?

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Those derby horses don't mess around - hold on tight or get flung from the ride.

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Gorgeous day.

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Kiddyland

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WELCOME

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The park is a Historic Landmark.

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Outside the gates there was an ice rink.

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Cool mural on the fountain.

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Pretty fountain.

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Oh, there's the map!

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Just a picturesque little park.

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More admiration for the landscaping.

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Another look.

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Look kids - a "pay phone". Long before cell phones....

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One more shot of the pretty landscaping.

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Mini-dragon coaster.

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Cute.

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Look out for that dragon head.

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Classic styling.

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Yes please.

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Step into the way-back machine.

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A look across the way.

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Let's have some fun on the carousel!

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Do they even still make hand carved horses anymore?

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Nicely detailed.

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A look back at the swings.

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Very elegant.

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It was a moving work of art.

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One last shot.

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There's some clever fire and water joke in there somewhere.

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Classic whip ride.

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House of mirrors.

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What's a castle without zombies?

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Air-brushed zombies.

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The crazy mouse - cracking necks since 2003.

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The view from here was kind of meh.

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What is the difference between a crazy mouse and a wild mouse?

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Part of the infamous dragon tunnel.

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Then there was this building.

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Something out of a nightmare.

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Meet the Dragon Coaster's dark side.

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Windmill with demons? I'm in.

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The ride was better from the outside than the inside.

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Another park another S&S tower.

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The is about the best distance to stay from this ride.

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NUF EDILS!

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Choo choo!

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Taking a stroll to the beach / boardwalk.

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What's creepier than a giant tin man?

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The Village People - sorry we missed it... Y..M..C..A!

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A step back in time.

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Another fountain shot.

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Beach - looked nice but that water... I think I'll stay dry today.

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There was a restaurant and bar on the boardwalk.

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Some folks were fishing out on the pier - you can maybe see the log flume from here.

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A look back at the beach.

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Welcome back!

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Some interesting benches on the boardwalk.

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The classic Zoltar shot from Big (for the children of the 80's)

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Headed back to the parking lot.

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One last look back.

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Goodbye Rye Playland - it was fun!

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Pictures keep getting better and better .

How were the crowds at SF NE, as you said the operations weren't that good, but hopefully the lines weren't that bad. Planning to go next summer hence the curiosity .

 

Thanks!

 

The big rides at SFNE had good ops - Wicked Cyclone / Bizarro, etc. were fine - Thunderbolt was horribly slow and one of the ops at the drop tower was not a nice person. Those are the one's that stick out to me. It seemed the better the rides the better the ops - the worse the ride - the worse the ops.

 

So, unless it's a really slow day I'd bite the bullet and save up the almost $100 for Platinum Flash Pass. Assuming it will be the same way with Wicked Cyclone not being available on Gold next year. If it moves to Gold then Gold Flash Pass is enough. Being able to walk on all day to Wicked Cyclone and double rides on Bizarro made it worth it for us.

 

Since it was a hot day a lot of the crowd was in the water park then flooded in around 7 PM. Whenever we plan on going to a park that we will not be back to in a long time or ever - we just plan on getting whatever fast lane type system they have - we do wait until we get there to get it though - just in case the lines aren't bad. Even this day we waited until noon to get the Platinum Flash Pass - once we saw what the wait times were going to be. We also find on hot days like we had it makes the day go by so much better because we can break and not feel rushed to get it all done.

 

Probably best to pop into the SFNE thread a month or so before your trip and I'm sure the regulars there can help guide you on your upcoming visit.

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Day 6, Park 6 - Luna Park / Deno's Wonderland - Coney Island, NY

 

Took the hour long subway ride from the city out to Coney Island to check out Luna Park - and evidently Geno's Wonderland. I had no idea that the Giant Wheel and the surrounding area were a separate entity requiring separate tickets from Luna Park's 4 hour ride wristbands. Lesson learned - guess I did not do all my homework before going there. Of course we ponied up for a spin on the Giant Wheel and it's swinging cars. It wasn't as thrilling as the one we rode at Disneyland (that had barf bags on board!) but still offered a nice view of the surrounding area.

 

The big coasters - Cyclone and Thunderbolt both required their own tickets - $10 for Thunderbolt and $9 for Cyclone! Even the carousel was an upcharge - we skipped that. I mean this is New York City - so I guess it's par for the course... We rode Cyclone twice - and except for getting to say that we rode the Cyclone it was an alright ride. The seats and restraints were tight and small - nicely padded so comfortable but man was it tight. I remember reading about Thunderbolt and that it was quite rough - even after some track work. The lift hill and drop were great then it was anywhere from just ok to ouch! the rest of the way. Also rode another Zamperla flyer - again ok until you are inverted. The spinning mouse was like an outdoor Exterminator from Kennywood... The best ride was from Steeplechase - fun launch and smooth ride. Only thing I regret is not getting a hot dog from Nathan's - just because it was Nathan's at Coney Island.

 

We only spent about 3 hours at the park - mainly to get the coasters in - we didn't ride any of the flats. Another hot day and late into our trip so we were all ready to get out of the heat and back onto the air-conditioned subway. We then topped off the night (pun intended) with a trip to the top of 30 Rock - this was great and offered some great views!

 

That's all for this road trip!

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After an hour ride from Times Square this was our view from the subway platform.

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Some cool coaster art coming out of the station.

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Love the artwork all through the city.

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Nathan's! We never did get a dog here.

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Our first sighting of Thunderbolt.

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Creepy face logo everywhere was creepy.

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Boardwalk area was nice - I'm sure a lot was rebuilt since Sandy.

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Park map!

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The Tickler didn't tickle but was a decent little ride.

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Had to head straight to the park icon though.

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We are at a historic place!

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Still going after all these years.

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Lift hill shot.

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It looks like it's been there for almost 90 years!

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Random bench shot.

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The Tickler.

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Pure Americana - the Cyclone at Coney Island.

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This looked fun...

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No kiddie credit today.

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Deno's Wonder Wheel

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Time for a ride - swinging of course.

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Could make out the NYC skyline through the haze.

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Thunderbolt looks nice - wish it rode nice.

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The rest of Thuderbolt.

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Those swinging, caged enclosures sure look inviting...

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Deno even has a park map.

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Back to Luna Park - Goodbye Deno.

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Time for a coaster-horse credit.

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Neck snapping launch.

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Because all horse races begin with a traffic light.

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Nice looking trains.

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This one was parked - so 1 train ops made for a long wait - but it was a fun ride!

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Time to throw down $10 a pop to ride this.

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There is only 1 Thunderbolt to me and that's in West Mifflin, PA

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Not sure what the tower was / is - nothing seemed to be happening on it.

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Someone tied a kite to the railing which made for some fun shots.

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Bonus seagull!

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Top of the lift.

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Through the loop.

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Mandatory carousel shot.

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So next door is a landscaping company.

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I love NY too.

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Bye Thunderbolt - we won't miss you but will miss our $10.

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Last chance to get a dog... maybe next time.

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It was so relaxing and surreal at the top of 30 Rock!

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One more shot.

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Great shots! Glad you enjoyed yourself on your brief visit. You didn't miss much by skipping the carousel; the upcharge isn't really worth it, as it's quite possibly the shortest and slowest run of a carousel I've ever been on in my life. Agreed on Thunderbolt... beautiful looking coaster (hence the avatar), just wish it rode better, and got rid of those silly seatbelt-strap OTSRs.

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Not sure what the tower was / is - nothing seemed to be happening on it.

 

That was the Parachute Drop ride that was there, I believe.

Yes, I meant to mention that and then completely spaced. Used to be a Parachute Jump; been SBNO since 1964. It's since been retrofitted with 8,000 LED lights that display miscellaneous programmed patterns, and is visible from the Belt Parkway at night. Always makes a comforting sight when driving home from the Verrazano bridge!

 

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From Luna Park's website

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This report has some truly stunning photos!

 

The Parachute Tower was originally build for the 1939 Worlds Fair and was purchased by Steeplechase Park afterwards. It stayed lit during WWII blackouts as a beacon for boats and planes, and is now on the National Register of Historical Places. It's the only remaining piece of Tilyou's Steeplechase.

 

The city investigated the possibility of reopening it as a ride about 15 years ago but deemed it prohibitively expensive. So they settled on some restorative steel work, a repaint, and a lighting package (which was then massively upgraded for summer 2013 as seen above).

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Those are awesome shots! This looks like a really fun trip. It's a shame Goliath was down. While not the greatest rides on the plannet, those Deja Vu clones pull some of THE strongest g-forces you can experience on a coaster, especially backwards! The only coaster I can think of that is more intense doesn't exist anymore, because it was pre-modified I305! Then again, current 305 is still stupidly intense.

 

Also, I wish some of my "odds and ends bucket list coasters" (such as Thunderbolt) didn't have such outrageous single-ride ticket prices. $10 for one ride on Thunderbolt? I mean, come on, that's criminal even by NYC standards! There's a few rides (Manhattan Express, Canyon Blaster, Thunderbolt, El Loco) that I really want to get on some day, (especially since some of them are hated enough to be at risk for removal in the coming years), but it's really hard to justify making a trip or pit stop so far away, to shell out such a stupid amount of money for a single ride.

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Such high quality photos!! What type of camera are you using??

 

 

Canon SL1 - Pretty much their entry level crop sensor DSLR. I love it because of its light weight. I used a combo of the EF-S 10-18 for wide angle shots and EF-S 55-250 II for zooming in. I usually use the EF-S 18-55 STM also (the lens that came with the camera kit) but opted to rent a higher end 24-70 f/4L lens for this trip. It is a little heavier but produces a slightly better picture. I also use lensrental.com to try out the higher end lenses once in a while. Keep an eye on Canon's refurbished site - especially around the holidays - they offer like new kits for a great price - that's how I got mine a few years back. It looks like it is $379 right now - you can add a refurbed 55-250 lens for under $100 and have a nice beginner setup.

 

It was tough on this trip because the primary objective was to ride and enjoy the parks - but also try to find the time to get some photos. That's why I did not cover every square inch of the parks - just gravitated to the popular rides and whatever captured my attention. They range from snapshot quality to pretty damn good on a few - figured I share even the just alright ones as well - I know I love seeing parks through other folks eyes so glad a lot of you enjoyed!

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Thanks for the info on the tower! I meant to look up info on it but never did.

 

Also, I might have been a little harsh on Thunderbolt - I've been on worse - and it wasn't all bad but there were a few transitions where we all had a collective "ouch!" come out of our mouths. We rode in the second row if that matters - they would not let us wait next train for front - even after spending $10 a pop. Restraints were fine - that wasn't the problem. We just did not enjoy it and even if it was free probably wouldn't have rode again. Cyclone we did splurge for a few rides - again more for the nostalgia than the ride - but it was a collective one-and-done on Thunderbolt.

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Absolutely amazing photos!! I like the unique angle you put on everything!! Looks like you all had a blast!! Thanks for sharing!!

 

Also, I might have been a little harsh on Thunderbolt - I've been on worse - and it wasn't all bad but there were a few transitions where we all had a collective "ouch!" come out of our mouths. We rode in the second row if that matters - they would not let us wait next train for front - even after spending $10 a pop. Restraints were fine - that wasn't the problem. We just did not enjoy it and even if it was free probably wouldn't have rode again. Cyclone we did splurge for a few rides - again more for the nostalgia than the ride - but it was a collective one-and-done on Thunderbolt.

 

We felt the same way about Thunderbolt. We did manage to get lucky and get a front, and it wasn't any better than how you described it. There were some serious "ouch" moments on this ride... It was very much a "One, and done" kind of ride. We enjoyed Cyclone MUCH more than we did Thunderbolt!!

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