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Photo TR: The Great Weird™ 2018 Road Trip

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Hey everyone! I just finished writing up a report for my latest trip. While this one wasn't coaster-focused like my 2016 trip, it did have some parks. I'm not going to report on much else besides the parks because I didn't really take pictures of much else, though I do have a few pictures here or there of some other notable things we did during the trip.


I'd also like to apologize for how low quality my pictures are. My phone camera is actually terrible and I definitely have no clue about anything photography-related.




We began the trip by getting bottlenecked by "construction" which is actually just some closed off lanes and a sign because construction may or may not eventually happen here so let's slow down traffic in case we decide to actually start constructing anything anytime soon. I-35 is what locals call Satan's small intestine, where the average speed reaches zero to five miles per hour on a good day. Legends say that sometimes, if you close your eyes, it feels just like Cedar Creek Mine Ride, only slightly more intense.


Eventually, slow gives way to not-slow and you escape I-35. Slowly the land of guns, grub, and gold becomes the land of... well actually it's just guns, grub, and gold again except with bigger hills. The drive was fairly uneventful, besides some cutting-off douchebag in front of us getting pulled over in Oklahoma, which was pretty satisfying even though getting pulled over in Oklahoma sucks because the whole state is a speed trap, but still, kinda satisfying. We grabbed some pancakes at the Comic Sans Napkin McDonald's with Silver Dollar City coupons (score!) and eventually, around noon, made it to Silver Dollar City. It was a Friday, so we weren't expecting the crowds to be SUPER awful (last time we went it was a Saturday, the first day of Star Spangled Summer, and the Harlem Globetrotters were in town, yet the park seemed very empty and we only used 4/8 of the Trailblazer punches) but budgeted for Trailblazer just in case. Upon arrival, the ticket line spilled out of the queue over to the tram loading/unloading area, so Trailblazer was a must. After about 25 minutes in the ticket line, we had our tickets and Trailblazers so we entered the park.



Not even lying. Comic Sans Napkins

The original plan was to head to Time Traveler, use the one TT punch so we didn't get Lightning Rodded, then do whatever because we had 6 and a half hours and 7 punches. On the way to Time Traveler, we heard people talking about how it was broken down. New hotness is always a bit temperamental, so we headed there anyway in case it was temporary, but it looked like it was gonna be a while. Luckily, there's a damn good mine train next door. This is where we discovered how good of a decision Trailblazers were that day. They were running one train and the queue was almost out to the entrance. This would go on to become a theme throughout the day, but due to the sheer awesomeness of Trailblazers (and by extension, SDC in general) it didn't matter. As usual, Thunderation is a seriously awesome mine train, and with Road Runner Express taking an extended siesta it's fun to get a spin on an upper tier mine train. The trees around the ride are mostly intact post-Time Traveler, but a few of the denser forest moments over by TT felt a little thinner. Still a super fun mine train and comparable in quality to only the best of family coasters. It felt a little smoother this season vs. 2016, but it's not exactly butter smooth. If this is the weakest link in SDC's coaster lineup then SDC pretty much has the most rock solid coaster lineup this side of that one place that starts with Kn and ends with oebels (disclaimer: much to my dismay I'm getting this information secondhand and am still a Knoebels (and by extension Pennsylvania) virgin).


Thanks to Time Traveler being down and Thunderation running one train with a huge queue, we figured it'd be good to check on the other coasters. Like Thunderation, Outlaw Run was only running one train and had a queue that (at the time) was almost spilling out onto the midway, though it posted a 20 minute wait for some reason (lol). Punched in on the Trailblazer and jumped into the second to last row after being dumped into the station. Something to note is that Outlaw Run near the back is something you want to be careful of. It's still smoother than most woodies at its worst, but the back row of any car is definitely gonna jostle you around a bit more (dare I say rough?). Still the king of the park and it's amazing what kind of elements give airtime on this ride that in no right mind would you expect to give any sort of airtime. Due to its ridiculous intensity, its short length really is perfect and it feels complete.



Every ride has an incredibly themed station.


kinda artsy for being taken with a piece of sh*t camera, lol

On the way out from two Outlaw Run rides (both Trailblazed) I remembered that someone recommended the Giant Barn Swing. Looking at the line it didn't look too bad so decided why not. The line was about 20 minutes but it moved fast due to shorter cycles. Very fun flat ride with some airtime and fun theming, and worth a 20 minute line. I'd complain about a short cycle like the enthusiast I am, except who cares because it's still a giant f*cking swing and who cares if you only get to fly way up high in the air two times on the giant f*cking swing instead of flying way up high in the air three times on the giant f*cking swing, plus the line would have been longer and moved slower so it was kinda necessary.



Seriously awesome flat ride

Following that we began the SDC ritual of eating some of the most glorious food ever made in the form of a Tater Twist. It's basically a hot dog on a stick wrapped in a spiral potato and covered in pure happiness. During this time we stopped to check out the glassblowing show and the pottery shop, while also looking out for news of Time Traveler opening. It seemed to still be closed so we headed for Wildfire. The line was only to the station so we skipped out on Trailblazing this time and headed for the front row line, where we encountered literally the only less-than-perfect anything ever to be encountered at Silver Dollar City ever, employees not communicating about who should get the front row seats on each cycle between the Trailblazer line and the normal line. That would've been fine except with one train ops and slow dispatches it was probably 30 minutes before we were on the ride. I know what you're thinking - why would anyone with Trailblazer be dumb enough to wait 30 minutes in a non-moving line? Honestly I don't remember why, but I'm glad we did because we ended up using all the punches by the end, so it would've been one less reride or something, and we ended up filling the day pretty perfectly, so who cares? After that we walked around and Trailblazed a back seat ride. Wildfire is a seriously solid B&M looper. It doesn't have the snappiness of Raptor or the gracefulness of a wing coaster, but the view in the front seat at the top of the lift hill is breathtaking, and the back row provides ridiculous ejector air down the first drop plus a hilariously fun yank through every inversion and turn. Just like literally everything at Silver Dollar City, Wildfire is a grand slam attraction.



The whole park is so green. There's shade and trees everywhere!


The place to be on Wildfire


This cobra roll on Wildfire may not be as forceful as Raptor's, but it's like twice as big.


They're not gonna be sitting still for much longer...

We were originally planning on doing the cave tour next, but in line for Wildfire, we heard that Time Traveler had opened back up, so that was naturally the next destination. Like Wildfire, Outlaw Run, and Thunderation, Time Traveler was running one train and had a super long line that was probably an hour plus (but at least it was operating! I was starting to think we'd get the Lightning Rod treatment, but unlike Dollywood, SDC can do no wrong - as long as you budget for Trailblazer). The Trailblazer passes only allowed one punch on TT, so this was our shot. This was one of the most anticipated coasters of the trip because of how unique it is, but I wasn't exactly expecting anything super amazing. (Spoiler alert: wow)



I didn't actually get any pictures of Time Traveler, so here's a picture of it from the SDC park map/newspaper thing.

Following the awesomeness of Time Traveler, we stopped to ride the real star attraction of Silver Dollar City.


Oh, did I say ride? I meant eat. Did you really think this trip report wasn't going to include some raving about cinnamon bread? Ha! The new Time Traveler cinnamon bread with caramel and chocolate sprinkled on top was calling so that's what we got. I remember taking a high school health class where we were discussing dopamine or endorphins or seratonin or whatever tf the happiness stuff in your brain is. They told us that eating two cheeseburgers is equal to having sex on the scale of release of happiness brain stuff, which doesn't really seem accurate unless you're eating some really good cheeseburgers but hey, science! On this scale, the cinnamon bread at Silver Dollar City is equal to approximately seven thousand three hundred and forty eight cheeseburgers, which I'll let you do the math and convert to sex if you want to for some reason. This is a low estimate according to actual proven science, trust me.


Next we went to the entrance to do the Marvel Cave tour, which was one of the overall two must-do things we missed on the last big trip, the other being going to Dollywood on a day when Lightning Rod was open (not included in the Great Weird Trip 2018: Dollywood). This is one of those iconic SDC things that's really unique to the park and really cool. I've done a few cave tours before, like Natural Bridge Caverns and Carlsbad Caverns, but this one had the SDC charm and some park history involved which is always a bonus. The cave tour is about an hour and fifteen minutes from starting the tour to returning to the actual park midways, so at this point we had about two hours left before the 7:00 closing (side note: closing at 7:00?? who does that??).


The only coaster we had yet to ride was Powder Keg, the seriously underrated launch coaster of SDC. With three Trailblazer usages left, front and back row rides seemed like a good idea. Fortunately for everyone involved, Powder Keg was running two trains, a real breath of fresh air from the rest of the coasters that were doing their best Poltergeist impression (seriously, what's up with Poltergeist running one train lately? I haven't seen it run two all season). One front row and one back row ride proved once again that every Silver Dollar City coaster here whose name doesn't start with the letter T and have an entrance ten feet from another coaster whose name starts with the letter T absolutely has to be ridden once in front and once in back (Outlaw Run second to back) because the front has awesome views and the back has crazy ride experiences. Powder Keg fits this and really has one of the most complete ride experiences ever. It has a launch, a lift hill, some crazy airtime, bat-out-of-hell-or-maybe-just-Marvel-cave sensation of speed, an amazing location, and wraps it all up by being really smooth all the way through. If I were a typical enthusiast I could nitpick the S&S restraints or the seats or something dumb but really there's nothing truly negative to say about this ride.



The legendary Powder Keg rollback spike that doesn't actually do anything


Sorry guys, the ride exploded. Go ride Time Traveler instead.


Powder Keg has too many signs


not even kidding


there are 3 of them!


Wildfire has one or two signs, but not as many as Powder Keg.

Two awesome rides on Powder Keg later, we did something related to food and then got way too lost because Silver Dollar City has the most hilariously wonky layout of any park ever. Checked out woodworking around this time as well because woodworking is cool just like all the other SDC artisan stuff. One non-Trailblazed back row ride on Wildfire and one Trailblazed front row ride on Outlaw Run later, the park closed, so we headed out with empty Trailblazers, forgot which parking lot we parked in, took three tram rides, and finally got to the car.


Off we were to the esteemed (not really, but it was pretty good for what we paid for it) Baldknobbers Motor Inn on the Branson strip, and in proper road trip fashion we got some Andy's Frozen Custard at night also on the Branson strip. Did you know there are some extra coaster credits on the Branson strip @ America's Fun Park? I didn't until the morning after, but I don't care about credits besides milestones anyway so not a big loss.



The Branson strip ferris wheel has a really cool light package.

-- quick rave review of silver dollar city ahead --


I can't emphasize how amazing Silver Dollar City is. Between stellar food and a rock solid coaster lineup there's seriously nothing bad to say about this park. Even on a day where 4/5 of the major coasters were running one train and the operations were kinda slow, the park still managed to deliver a ridiculously fun time. I know it's easy to say that when you skipped the line 8 times, but seriously, stuff like that at Cedar Point or SFOT would completely trash the mood of the day (and has for a lot of people at SFOT). This is a park where you can completely disregard rides and have a super awesome and full day, but also a park where you can completely disregard everything but rides and have a super awesome and full day. This is something I personally think no other major park does nearly as well, at least any park not named Knoebels (again disclaimer my knoebels knowledge is all secondhand and I have a knoebels shaped hole in my heart waiting to be filled one day hopefully soon). The food, rides, atmosphere, location, artisan crafts, shows (which we didn't do this time but did plenty of last time), and just overall park experience are on a whole new level compared to your typical corporate park and even most traditional family owned parks. The park is absolutely phenomenal in every way imagineable. I was a little skeptical that it wouldn't live up to the expectation I set for myself from last time, but if it's even possible to, I like it even more than I did after last time.



The whole park is so organic and everything feels like it should be there.




Aw shucks! Thanks for havin' me!


One thing SDC does flawlessly - food.


Another thing SDC does flawlessly - atmosphere


Technically outside the park, but SDC also has amazing landscaping.


Tiny bird hiding in the flowers


The bag that your merch comes in is awesome even on its own.

-- rave review done --


Time Traveler: I don't know what I was expecting, but whatever it was, Time Traveler blew it away in every aspect. I came off laughing so hard I had to stop walking and take a second on the side of the midway to figure out what kind of nitrous oxide laughing gas shenanigans the ride had injected into me. One of the most blatantly fun coasters ever made that really makes you question if any other coasters out there are really quite as fun as it. It's hard to say if one ride is really enough to truly rank something but screw it, Time Traveler is absolutely a top ten roller coaster for me. It has some hilariously fun moments of airtime, hangtime, inversions taken facing a direction that somehow makes them 50 times better, and it generally gives an experience you can't get on any other roller coaster out there. I'm sure that if it spun more or less than it does/did/has done/will do/something, it would be a lesser ride, but the amount of spinning makes it feel not like a spinning coaster, but a rotating coaster, where the ride does a statistical check for what seat position makes the next element the most laugh-out-loud fun and rotates you to that position, lather rinse repeat until you're basically straight outta the dentist and so high on laughing gas that you might even find an Adam Sandler movie kinda funny. Maybe.




SDC Ride Scorecard:

Thunderation x1

Outlaw Run x3

The Giant Barn Swing x1

Wildfire x3

Time Traveler x1

Powder Keg x2


SDC Diabetes Scorecard:

Tater Twist x1

Time Traveler Cinnamon Bread x1

Some Skillets x2


SDC Miscellaneous Scorecard:

Cave Tour x1

Steps x12.5k

Artisan Craft Watching x3




Top 10 Before SDC 2018:

1. Millennium Force @ Cedar Point

2. New Texas Giant @ Six Flags Over Texas

3. Outlaw Run @ Silver Dollar City

4. Maverick @ Cedar Point

5. Iron Rattler @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas

6. The Voyage @ Holiday World

7. Diamondback @ Kings Island

8. ShockWave @ Six Flags Over Texas

9. Wonder Woman: Golden Lasso Coaster @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas

10. Raptor @ Cedar Point


Top 10 After SDC 2018:

1. Millennium Force @ Cedar Point

2. New Texas Giant @ Six Flags Over Texas

3. Outlaw Run @ Silver Dollar City

4. Maverick @ Cedar Point

5. Iron Rattler @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas

6. The Voyage @ Holiday World

7. Time Traveler @ Silver Dollar City

8. Diamondback @ Kings Island

9. ShockWave @ Six Flags Over Texas

10. Wonder Woman: Golden Lasso Coaster @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas




Stay tuned for the next update, which (assuming I don't split it in half) is the 21k step day in Chicago + SFGAm!

Edited by LiftThrill
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I was also blown away by Time Traveler. Sorry you didn't get to ride it more. And I laughed at your I-35/Cedar Creek Mine Ride comment. CCMR has the ability to make other Arrow mine trains feel like Magnum.

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Part of me is kind of glad I only got one ride on TT - while I'd loved to have ridden it quite a few more times, I don't know if the second or third time could have done it justice. Some rides get better with each ride, and some do the opposite. I'd definitely have wanted to try the back, though.


As for CCMR, yeah. If you have seen a pool of water and occasionally walk around sometimes, you probably already have the credit.

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Very nice! Glad you had such a good time. Cave, crafts, cinnamon bread, gooood. You did it correctly.


Powder Keg is behind just so much stuff, stuff that had been there for decades. Even with all those signs, I still walk past a bewildered person wondering how to get to it almost every visit.

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I don't think there's a wrong way to do SDC honestly. There's seriously not a single bad thing about the park.


As for Powder Keg, just getting to it is a representation of the entire park layout. No rhyme or reason to anything, lol, but it adds to the charm.

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I don't think there's a wrong way to do SDC honestly.

Well, there is. If you run in, ride all the coasters, complain about how they didn't meet your sky high expectations, and leave, then you're doing it wrong. And yes, I've met those people. But I agree with your point. If you're having fun and enjoying the park, then however you do that is cool.


As for Powder Keg, just getting to it is a representation of the entire park layout. No rhyme or reason to anything, lol, but it adds to the charm.

Definotely. SDC has never had a master plan, and it shows.

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After one day of driving and going to Silver Dollar City, two days of screwing around, seeing some family and friends, driving through Missouri and Illinois, and getting a good night's sleep at an Airbnb that we booked last second (because we forgot that we'd already booked the La Quinta across from the park because half the time we spent dicking around in Missouri had absolutely no cell service. whoops) it was finally time for some more TPR trip report appropriate content.


Before actually doing stuff in Chicago, we had to park so we found a big multilayer parking garage that was charging $38 or something ridiculous for parking but seemed like not a huge deal because we budgeted way too much for the day in Chicago so who cared, right? If I remember right, it was $25 for twenty minutes or less, $30 for 20 minutes to 3 hours, $38 for 3-6 hours, or $38+hourlyfees for over 6 hours. Remember this because it'll be important later.










We had an appointment for a boat tour (explained a little more in the next paragraph) at 9:30 so to kill time we checked out the Apple store directly next to the boat tour boarding area. Honestly, these lifestyle stores were probably one of the highlights of Chicago. They're basically a normal version of a store, but with literally everything imaginable that fits that type of store. This Apple store had technology presentations going on all day, plus almost every modern Apple-owned product on display.


















It was my first time in Chicago and the main thing that intrigues me about big cities is always the tall buildings and cool skyline, so the touristy thing that was most appealing was the Shoreline Sightseeing architecture boat tour. That was a really fun experience and our tour guide, Juan Pablo, was quite knowledgeable about the city's history and the styles of architecture of the buildings in Chicago. Overall a comfortable boat ride and informative tour, I would definitely recommend if you like buildings, architecture, boat rides, or history.

(time for HUGE picture dump. if you don't care for low quality pictures of cool buildings then feel free to skip forward until you stop seeing pictures of buildings)













































































(post split in half due to attachment limit)

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Following the tour, we decided to walk around and just check out parts of the city. I don't know why but for some reason we ended up at some fast food Asian restaurant called Wow Bao that, as the name implies, makes baos (dumplings). I got a salted caramel "sweet bao" and honestly that may have been the weirdest sh*t I've ever eaten. This is pretty much the Blazing Fury of food. Bizarre as hell and plenty of wonkiness to go around. It tasted like neither salted nor caramel nor bao and I really don't know what it DID taste like. If you like janky and weird food, this is the place for you. All their other typical Asian dishes also looked really weird, and the other non-sweet baos were apparently equally bizarre according to other people there.



There's a spot where my memory kinda goes blank after Wow Bao. Maybe the salted caramel bao was actually drugged. The world may never know. The next thing I DO remember doing was some walking around in the big commerce center mall thing that has a train station in it or something. We looked at furniture stuff, some weird restaurants (though probably not as utterly bizarre as Wow Bao), and even up to the empty showroom floors for some reason (?) before getting hungry for real food and going down to the food court for lunch.


The food court there was not your typical food court. Almost always you're gonna get a Panda Express, Chick-fil-A, McDonald's/Wendy's/Burger King (pick one), a smoothie place, a wild card restaurant that can be just about anything, plus some more local and chain places of different varieties than previously listed. This food court, on the other hand, boasted a bunch of weird high-class restaurants (at least compared to Panda Express and Chick-fil-A), including a highbrow-styled knockoff Chipotle, some modern-art-inspired grills, and maybe even a bonus Wow Bao (who knows?). A few days prior, someone had recommended we try hot chicken while in Chicago, as it was the city's second best signature food after hot dogs and before deep dish pizza. One of the places in this food court was a hot chicken restaurant called Budlong, so naturally that was the place to go based on the recommendation we received. I got myself an order of tenders and some surprisingly good root beer with cane sugar (tasted almost like cream soda combined with root beer) and sat down to eat. Now, I'm Texan, so spicy and hot food isn't exactly new to me and I've had plenty of stuff with jalapenos, peppers, and spicy seasoning, but I'm still a little sensitive to heat depending on the kind. The Budlong chicken has four tiers of hotness: not hot, classic, hot, and really f*cking hot. The classic seemed like the best choice so that's what I had gotten, and jeez these were some biga** tenders. I began testing the crispy edges for temperature (not spicy hotness, just if it was gonna burn my face off or something). Pretty soon my tenders were of an acceptable temperature so I began to dig in. I felt a little twinge of burn on my tongue, then throat, then cheeks, lips, and roof of my mouth, and all of a sudden my "classic" hot chicken became the "hot as f*ck" chicken. I don't even want to imagine what the actual highest tier of hotness would have tasted like but I imagine you'd have to call in the fire department. Luckily I had some really good root beer to wash it down and kinda heal it a little bit, but jeez this stuff is waaayyy hotter than you'd expect.



After some more shop observation and way too much walking we had about another 45 minutes to an hour in the city before we were done for the day (fatigue mostly) so we headed to Portillo's to get the legendary Chicago dogs. These ended up being the most normal food in Chicago and probably the best. I also grabbed a frozen custard hot fudge sundae there because why not?



We considered going somewhere afterwards for some Chicago deep dish, but after Wow Bao, Hot As F*ck Chicken, and Portillo's, we were feeling pretty full. After a walk down through the Magnificent Mile (I think it's called that? I heard people calling it the miracle mile but that's the one in florida right? idfk) of cool lifestyle edition shops that would be a glorified strip mall were they not lifestyle shops, we got lost for a bit and then returned to our parking garage. We headed to the lobby to pay and found ourselves standing at a couple of sketchy cash-only pay machines.


Since our time in the city was about 7 hours from the time we got our ticket to park, we figured it'd be about $45 so we got out two twenties and a five. After putting in the parking garage ticket and one of the twenties, the machine gave the thank you! screen and handed back a five dollar bill. Wait, what? $15 for 7 hours? What kind of parking garage is this??? Aren't these things supposed to OVERcharge us?????? We weren't gonna complain so we got our paid-for(ish) ticket back and went to the car. Upon exit, there was some hesitance to use the exit ticket in case the system caught onto it scamming itself, but it ended up accepting it. So yeah, long story short the sh*tty parking garage scammed itself and left us $30 richer and 100% more confused than ever before.




Yadda yadda yadda hour and a half drive through chicago traffic which is basically the Corkscrew to I-35's Cedar Creek Mine Ride and we ended up at Six Flags Great America on a perfect weather summer's day at like 5PM during the heat of the day. Our reasoning for going to the park two days in a row was to be able to do everything in case the crowds were the SFGAm standard (35 minute minimum wait, 294847472839 minute maximum wait according to most locals). We didn't buy Flash Pass in advance despite the fact that it would have been significantly cheaper to do so had crowds been super awful. After already having done 12-15k steps in Chicago, it was time to get a new maximum on the step counter.



Arriving in the parking lot


I love seeing new park skylines - cities, amusement parks, and mountainous areas are my favorite places to be because I love being surrounded by tall stuff for some reason.


That's our first stop.

Our first ride was Superman: Ultimate Flight, my first B&M flyer and one generally considered a weak ride compared to the other flyers. Waited about 50-55 minutes as expected per SFGAm precedent. My only flyer previously was Firehawk, which manages to be worse than Titan somehow, so I was apprehensive about Superman. Turns out that B&M flyers, unlike Vekoma flyers, don't suck.





Simply by not being Firehawk, it's already better than Firehawk.




They look like they're having more fun than they would be if they were riding Firehawk.




Ok, not gonna lie. It's nothing special. But compared to Firehawk? There's not even a comparison. It's like comparing the Coasters cheeseburger to a McDonald's quarter pounder (one of the new fresh-meat ones). Neither are awesome or anything, but one of them is a huge pile of sh*t and the other is perfectly acceptable.

Following that we went to one of the most anticipated coasters of the trip, Goliath! Waited another almost exactly 50-55 minutes (sensing a theme here?) and noticed that X-Flight was stuck on the lift. Last time I was in a park with a ride stuck on the lift, it was IRat which closed down for a whole day afterwards, so this was quite concerning considering I was pretty excited to complete the set of all 4 wing coasters on the continent, so it really would have sucked for X-Flight to have been closed the whole time we were there.



There are a TON of clones at SFGAm. Luckily, they're all pretty ok clones. No Boomerang garbage here.


V2: Electric Boogaloo


X-Flight looks tiny for some reason. I think it's just surrounded by huge rides that make it seem absolutely puny.


There's the one we're headed for.


...but not before waiting in an hour line.


Luckily, if any coaster here is worth the wait it's this one.




lots of wood


Topper track


they go up...


they go down. This angle makes it look almost like Iron Rattler.


Goliath, as the name implies, is absolutely massive.


brake run

After a very fun ride on Goliath, we had only seen X-Flight do a couple of test runs so the next stop, randomly chosen by looking around, was American Eagle, which even on a busy day only had about a 5 minute wait. The blue side had just closed for some reason that required security to show up so the obvious choice was the red side. I'm a sucker for good out-and-back woodies with good airtime so this one was right up my alley.



Murican Eagle

In the hilariously long queue (what's up with all the backtracking switchbacks here? lol) we noticed that X-Flight was just starting to run trains with actual people again, so after American Eagle we went to X-Flight to check out the situation there. The line was pretty similar to American Eagle's at about 5 minutes, so after that short wait we hopped on the left side. How is the wing coaster situation popping in Gurnee, IL? Well, it's pretty great, I'd say.



X-Flight has a very cool-looking layout


It looks small even from the station even though it's actually fairly big.

Following X-Flight, we only had about 30 minutes left in the park before closing, which we wasted looking for Whizzer because the forecast for the next day wasn't stellar and we knew Whizzer isn't a very rain-friendly coaster, plus finding the ride was hard because it's in a weird location nestled between the entrance and the Southwest Territory. After looking around for 15 minutes we finally found the entrance for this legendary Schwarzkopf family classic and by the time we hopped into the back car it was quite dark, so we got the famed night ride on Whizzer. How was it? Find out soon because that wraps up the yapping part of the TR and begins the ride review part of the TR!



Whizzer at night.


Whizzer at night!


Well, kinda night.


In the trees it feels more like night.


The (presumably) less awesome of the Six Flags Bull coasters.


why is this parking lot light so f*cking bright? lol



Superman: Ultimate Flight - Blows Firehawk to hell and back. A pretty tame ride but infinitely more comfortable and fun than Firehawk. The pretzel loop is as awesome as advertised and the experience is generally pleasant. Not a bad ride by any measure. Also, in case I didn't mention it, it's better than Firehawk.


Goliath - After two days of riding it, this is definitely an amazing ride. The first drop might be the best on any coaster (Iron Rattler and Millennium Force are the only ones I can say for sure are in the same tier and possibly better), the inversions are very different from everything else RMC has done, and the airtime hills are great. It makes Outlaw Run seem rough with how smooth it is, but some of the transitions between elements are uncomfortably abrupt. Not a huge deal and doesn't ruin the ride, just a thing to note. Doesn't feel short, like Outlaw Run it feels like the perfect length (though paced much more awkwardly than Outlaw Run), but a very complete-feeling ride. Definitely a star attraction at this park.


American Eagle - I love out and back woodies. The sense of adventure from going out and then coming back, the floaty sensation of airtime over a big hill, occasionally rib smashing laterals from the few turnarounds a ride has, and of course the less-than-smooth track interaction are all super awesome. American Eagle is actually quite smooth for one of these classic woodies and the airtime is some very fun floater/ejector combo where some hills give one kind, some give the other, and some give none at all. The giant helix puts all other wooden coaster helix sizes to shame (except maybe that janky as sh*t old Rattler one). Ended up being one of my favorite coasters in the park.


X-Flight - I was very excited for this ride because a) wing coasters rock despite the clavicle/hip crusher restraints and b) it completed the set of all 4 North American wing coasters. I'd say it's definitely a very solid wing coaster and as an added bonus the restraints on it don't tighten nearly as much as GateKeeper or Wild Eagle. The layout is also more solid than those two with some great near misses, a fantastic first drop, and fun turns with higher g forces than you'd expect. Maybe a little bumpier than the other wing coasters, but still a very very solid ride here. I prefer Thunderbird for its launch and location, but X-Flight is a very close second for sure.


Whizzer - Great classic family ride. Reminds me of The Beast a little in terms of the layout, reputation, and experience. The lack of restraints other than a seat belt makes it fun as you have lots of wiggle room and the bobsled trains make it unique compared to modern coasters. Sensation of speed is fantastic (it whizzes) and that's kinda the whole deal with this ride, so it's definitely well executed in that regard.




Ride Scorecard:

Superman: Ultimate Flight x1

Goliath x1

American Eagle (red) x1

X-Flight x1

Whizzer x1


Chicago Food Scorecard:

"Salted" "Caramel" "Bao" x1

Hot as f*ck fried chicken x1

Portillo's Hot Dog x1

Portillo's Hot Fudge Sundae x1


Exercise Scorecard:

Steps x21.3k




stay tuned for SFGAm day 2, the part where we actually ride the OTHER coasters here!

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Great reports!


I found Outlaw Run perfectly fine in 2nd to back and could marathon it. The very back had a few more bumps, but it only became an issue with non-stop rerides.


Also I'm stunned they'd go one train on Time Traveler. That coaster had lengthy queues even with three train operations.

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That's about how I feel about Outlaw Run. It's fine, but hard to ride more than once in the wheel rows.


Time Traveler had been down most of the day, so opening at all was a very good thing - DEFINITELY wouldn't have wanted to wait in that 90 minute line though.

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enjoying your report, and absolutely no reason to apologize for the pics. .they are all great!



I have to say, yours is the first pics I've seen of someone's trip to Chicago without a pic of the Bean (myself included)



how did you manage to not stop there?



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I have a picture of the bean in my folder. Not sure if I just forgot to add it or something, there are a few other pictures along with it that just kinda didn't end up in the TR for whatever reason. We spent a good half an hour there screwing around, lol


also thanks for the comment on picture quality - I do the best I can with the camera I have

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Following a fun evening at Six Flags Great America, we checked the hourly forecast and figured out that around 4PM the next day the skies were gonna unleash their wrath for the rest of the day. Luckily there was also a morning shower that was apparently bad enough to scare away 99% of visitors from the park, so the time we DID spend there was mostly spent actually riding things instead of waiting in line. We got up early and decided to have breakfast in Wisconsin for a state credit (yay!). Eventually we settled on an incredibly well-rated breakfast place called Franks' Diner so half an hour later we were up in the Cheese State parked next to quite possibly the sketchiest looking breakfast place this side of, well, actually pretty much any Shoney's anywhere. The buildings around it were probably twice its height and three times its width and, according to some history on the walls and menu, it was originally a freight car. The feeling of sketchiness increased as we walked in the door and caught our first glimpse of the slogan: "Order what you want, eat what you get." Sketchy-looking restaurants are generally either really really good or really really bad, and with an autographed picture of Guy Fieri eating there on the wall we had a good feeling this was gonna be in the former category.



Franks diner has a lot of charm to the experience.

Looking at the menu they have pancake stacks of anywhere from No Stack to Quadruple Stack, so anticipating moderate-sized portions I ordered a Small Stack of 2 pancakes, naturally with chocolate chips and whipped cream because, y'know, after walking 21 thousand steps the day prior it only felt right to pig out for breakfast. Fifteen to 20 minutes later, the food was ready and the server brought food to the table.


The second I caught sight of my Small Stack, I realized I had made a grave mistake. These pancakes were huge as f*ck and I was seriously doubting my ability to consume such a large volume of food. It made no sense how a restaurant that takes up like 50 square feet on a good day could even get the space to create such an absurd measure of food. The inch-thick, foot-and-a-half-in-diameter pancakes took quite a while to even make a dent, but eventually my valiant efforts were met with a very bloated stomach and still a good quarter of these gargantuan a** pancakes sitting in front of me. I soon yielded to Franks' Diner's creation and we paid the bill and left, with a $10 tip for good service and, of course, going above and beyond the call of how much pancake one person can even begin to stomach. I had ordered what I wanted, and, at the very least, tried to eat what I got.




One half-hour(ish) drive later we arrived back at the park and prepared to spend until 4 getting the few unique rides we missed, reriding the good stuff, and of course, if the time allowed, credit whoring the hell out of some clones and/or kiddie rides (which normally isn't a priority, but considering how many clones and uninteresting coasters there are at SFGAm it felt almost necessary). We began the day by noticing the complete lack of cars in the parking lot compared to the day before, and waited about zero seconds to get through security and the entrance.



Back in the thrill zone for some fun coasters.


We didn't do the waterpark but it looked pretty fun.


One of our stops today!


misting in the rain, lol



Naturally, considering what we had missed the day before, we headed for Southwest Territory and waited two trains for the back of Raging Bull. Noticing the complete lack of people riding we walked back around to try the front. After the front row ride the operator gave the typical "nobody in your row" spiel and we walked back over to the back end of the train for a third ride.



That's what we're doing today.


They're in for a fun time.


Maybe it's the fact that it's one of the shorter hypers, or maybe it's that we had been in Chicago the day prior with 1000 foot buildings, but Raging Bull doesn't seem that tall from down here.


It is pretty though!


and it does seem REALLY tall from up there, lol


here we go!


are trims gonna ruin our day today?




it's like Titan except good


no lines at SFGAm??? WHAT??!?!?!

Following three rides we headed over to Viper, the last major wooden coaster we had yet to ride. Rode in the front after waiting two or three trains and then headed to Demon, which was a walk-on for literally every row on the train. Went for the 5-1 seat that seemingly makes Arrow loopers not suck and got a ride that arguably did suck, but not as much as it could have. At that point, we had all of the unique good rides down, so we headed over to Goliath, grabbing a double ride on X-Flight (once in back, once in second row for the reride). Got 3 consecutive rides on Goliath (gotta love the awesomeness of morning showers!), then began the credit whoring with a ride on Joker. Got a better-than-expected ride on it, though devoid of the dive bomber drop. Riding these free spins is always a gamble, but we got some decent flipping which was nice.



next stop


Wooden fun






Worst coaster of the trip, but still has the #1 rave tunnel of all time (except the random A$$ frontier town one at Cedar Point, lol)




Goliath from across the park


one bad coaster and one good coaster


Really cool sign though!


Really good coaster over here


Goliath's main aesthetic is a ton of wood with a train flying through it.


except for the beautiful lift structure, that is






Spaghetti noodle sticking out of the skyline


Who ordered spaghetti?


inverted coaster intensity


Something tells me I don't wanna ride a coaster with these trains.


Spaghetti + some really good wooden coaster action



We went to V2 next, but it had broken down so we went somewhere to refill our drink since it was inevitably going to reopen in ten seconds anyway and there wasn't an issue with holding a spot in line because there wasn't a line to begin with. V2 was running a little rougher than you'd like but was still fun. Following V2, we rode Batman in the front, which was fun to compare to other Batman clones for some reason. Right after our ride, some people dressed in giant cow suits got on the front row (I think they were the only ones on that train lol), and with that as a confidence booster proving that dignity is just a social construct, we rode Little Dipper, then headed to The Dark Knight Coaster before checking out the mandatory double decker carousel and leaving the park.



Batman queue "theming"




Cows on a Batman clone.


More cows on a Batman clone


Dignity is just a social construct...


hey, but since it's wooden maybe it will be better than other kiddy coasters




Goliath and a finger


The cows try and escape the park. Little do they know, they're going the WRONG WAY! MWAHAHAHAHA!!!!


It doesn't joke, but it does have some flips


Plus these rides look nice


lawg floom


Batman vs The Joker! who will win?


Neither, because they'll both get drunk and have a Mardi Gras Hangover


Pretzel loop


The indoor mouse is always a "good" experience


Almost as many trash cans as a Cedar Fair park


World's tallest carousel


This is while the ride was running. Yeah, that's how empty the park was lol

Literally seconds after we left the exit gate, rain began misting, then sprinkling, and as soon as we got in the car, the heavens unleashed their full wrath on us for managing to go to SFGAm (without any flash pass) and actually ride things. Bamboozled again, suckers.



Thanks for the awesome day, SFGAm!


I'll probably be back at some point, though I don't really have any idea when lol



Raging Bull - What I don't get is how enthusiasts complain about B&M hypers having weak airtime and an annoying rattle, but then bash the one that has neither weak airtime nor a rattle. Sure, there's that trim that kills the airtime on a grand total of one hill, but the rest of the drops and hills give arguably fantastic airtime, even bordering on ejector occasionally. The back left seat is definitely the place to go, and with a butter smooth ride this is by far the most rerideable in the park. Goliath was three and done, but I could ride Raging Bull all day. This is exactly what Titan should be, yet manages to f*ck up in literally every way imagineable. The turns are comfortable yet surprisingly forceful with a good sensation of speed low to the ground, and of course the first drop in the back is something you have to experience to believe.


Viper - Middle of the road woodie. Fantastic laterals and not overly rough, but doesn't really do that much. Maybe a ride near the back would've left me with a different opinion? Who knows. Can't compare to other Coney clones since this is my only one so far.


Demon - Typical Arrow jank. Good theming, first drop, loops, and of course the rave tunnel to end all rave tunnels, but then the rave tunnel warps you to an alternate dimension where Demon is twice as bad as Corkscrew (CP). As far as Arrow loopers go, I'd take Vortex over Demon, but I'd definitely take Demon over Corkscrew or Tennessee Tornado.


Joker - What kind of ride are you gonna get? The world may never know. Our ride had about three really good flips and was better than about 75% of rides on Batman @ SFFT. Makes me wonder, are all these things truly clones or do they have the flip-inducing fins in different places/on different settings? I'd be interested to know.


V2: Electric Boogaloo - Much rougher than Wicked Twister, but I think the straight back spike is more fun than the twisted one. Gives some nice views of a log flume and some water, but WT has it beat with the beach location and smoothness.


Batman: The Ride - Smoother than SFFT's and less headache inducing than SFOT's. The original is always (usually) better.


Little Dipper - it's little and sometimes it dips


The Dark Knight Coaster - Unless you count Pandemonium clones as wild mouse coasters, this was my first mouse. Wasn't really looking forward to it and... yeah. I'd probably have liked it if I knew the layout or if it was outdoors but between a staple-happy employee and the lights on the ride not working (are there supposed to be more lights? some of the barely-visible theming makes it seem like it) it was definitely a little unpleasant. The sound effects were working though, which was cool.




Ride Scorecard:

Raging Bull x3

Viper x1

Demon x1

X-Flight x2

Goliath x3

Joker x1

V2: Vertical Velocity x1

Batman: The Ride x1

Little Dipper x1

The Dark Knight Coaster x1

Carousel x1


Food Scorecard:

Gargantuan A** Pancakes x2

Bacon Strips x2




Top 10 Before SFGAm 2018:

1. Millennium Force @ Cedar Point

2. New Texas Giant @ Six Flags Over Texas

3. Outlaw Run @ Silver Dollar City

4. Maverick @ Cedar Point

5. Iron Rattler @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas

6. The Voyage @ Holiday World

7. Time Traveler @ Silver Dollar City

8. Diamondback @ Kings Island

9. ShockWave @ Six Flags Over Texas

10. Wonder Woman: Golden Lasso Coaster @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas


Top 10 After SFGAm 2018:

1. Millennium Force @ Cedar Point

2. New Texas Giant @ Six Flags Over Texas

3. Outlaw Run @ Silver Dollar City

4. Maverick @ Cedar Point

5. Iron Rattler @ Six Flags Fiesta Texas

6. The Voyage @ Holiday World

7. Goliath @ Six Flags Great America

8. Time Traveler @ Silver Dollar City

9. Raging Bull @ Six Flags Great America

10. Diamondback @ Kings Island




stay tuned for the next update, featuring some hardcore disc golf and Lagoon! that'll be the last photo update, because I didn't take any pictures during Lagoon day 2


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Great report! As long as parks stay open, rain is an absolute blessing for park visits.


Maybe those who hate Raging Bull only ride towards the front? I tried it up there and was really underwhelmed, but the back had some great air as you mentioned. As for the free spins, they definitely can vary. I find the one at SFFT to give a pretty random and flippy ride. The flips on SFNE's are predictable but you can usually get at least 4. SFOT and SFGAdv had rides with only 1-2 flips. Then there's this thing over in Japan (

) that TPR recently filmed.
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Rain's great for park visits most of the time, as long as it's not too consistently strong. I stopped by SFFT today in the rain just to see if anything was running (was in the area) and I got a really really fun ride on the go karts, but nothing else was running


Raging Bull is quite different in the front from the back. I enjoyed it in every seat, but the back is definitely where the good airtime is. The edge seats in the back are fantastic and the coaster is as rerideable as they come.


As for the free spins, I was just watching that video of Arashi and man I don't know if I could handle that lol. SFGAm's had just about the perfect amount. SFFT is the most unpredictable I think, and I may or may not try SFOT's in the next few weeks depending on if schedules line up the way they should.

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Though I got zero pictures of it, one of the highlights of this trip was definitely the disc golf course we tried out near the Utah/Idaho border that I can't for the life of me remember the name of. The idea was pretty cool: take a ski lift or golf cart to the top of the mountain, then play disc golf down the mountain. In reality, we probably ended up getting more steps from this course alone than the Chicago/SFGAm combined day. You start off in between some super grassy cliffs in a field full of 8-inch grass, with the hole where I managed to lose my brand-new driver straight off the first tee pad (lol). That's about the time when when all of us realized we had probably bitten off more than we should try and chew. Luckily I managed to finish the rest of the course with only a mid-range disc and a putter with a relatively decent score (or at least I'd like to believe, considering we decided not to keep score lol).


The course actually became easier as it went for the most part, but the walking was mostly uphill between holes. There was a humorous amount of frustration between losing discs, trying not to fall off cliffs, and accidentally hitting the ski lift, before we made it to the last hole (skipping a few holes in the process, namely one over water because that's a recipe for losing even more discs). This hole was actually pretty awesome as its total length was almost 900 feet and its total height difference was about 235 feet, with an almost straight shot down the mountain and right back to the cabin where you had started your golf cart trip up to the top.


Overall, that was probably the most brutal disc golf course ever made but certainly one of the most hilarious (and pricier than expected) experiences of the trip. Between the $6 fee for the group and a net loss of 6 discs between all of us that went, it probably ended up costing a total of $75 for everyone combined ($15 for me to replace my driver, though most of the other discs lost were a little cheaper). I also got about a pound of stickers, burrs, and other types of desperate pleas for plant reproduction stuck to my pants and shoes, which was a whole lot of fun to remove afterwards (not).




Some amount of days afterwards we went to the most unique park of the trip, Lagoon. While Silver Dollar City is a very charming and very awesome park, Lagoon surpasses it in uniqueness mostly for how strange it is. It's family-owned, but feels more like a family-owned/corporate hybrid. They have the charm you'd expect from a family-owned park, but with the outright bizarre park rules, tacky merchandise, and "cool kid" marketing you'd expect from a corporate park. They have no coasters by any mainstream manufacturer (that's still around), with a lot of in-house design, Schwarzkopf love, and some really unique coasters by Zierer and Maurer. We also used their BounceBack! program to get a second day for $18 per person and check out their waterpark, Lagoon A Beach, which I'll detail a little more in the next update.



Cannibal from the parking lot


Roller Coaster from the parking lot


Wicked from the parking lot


Anticipating an awesome ride


The original parking lot coaster


Pictured: TICKETS TICKETS TICKETS and some roller coasters

Upon arrival, paying for parking, and a short walk, we arrived at Cannibal, one of the most unique coasters of the trip. After waiting 10 minutes and being assigned to the front, it was time for a very interesting ride. Cannibal is basically a really big Eurofighter designed in-house by Lagoon, with an insanely steep drop and some hangtime-focused inversions. After a ride on Cannibal we stopped for a ride in the front car of Roller Coaster, a classic woodie from 1921 that still holds up to this day.



Cannibal's aesthetic is being a large brown tower with a coaster going around it.


Lagoon is coasterbill approved™


There are weird fountains in many parts of this park.


"which roller coaster are we gonna go on?" "ROLLER COASTER!" "no, which one?" "ROLLER COASTER!" "there are 10 of them here! which one???" "the wood one" "oh, the WOOD ONE! why didn't you say so???"

The area on the right side of the park is absolutely stuffed with coasters. There's a wild mouse, a spinner, a Schwarzkopf double looper, and a Zierer launch coaster designed by Lagoon in-house, all within a minute or two's walk of each other. Our first stop in this area was Spider, the Maurer spinner that sorta kicked off the whole spinning coaster thing (in the US). After a ride that was way more fun than it deserved to be, we headed to Wicked, which broke down right before we got in line. In the absence of the park's second tallest roller coaster, we took two rides in the back row of Colossus the Fire Dragon (which is solid and pretty intense, but not my favorite Schwarzkopf), and noticed that Wicked had opened back up. Got in line and waited maybe 15 or 20 minutes before being assigned yet again to the front row of a coaster they were assigning seats on. We then took a ride on Wild Mouse (as hilariously janky as you'd ever want a Wild Mouse to be) and were about to SkyRide over to the other side of of the park when literally every ride in sight stopped running, SkyRide included. We walked to the other side of of the park to see what was going on only to find that the power was out throughout the whole park, save for restaurants and some smaller flats. Since we were hungry anyway, we grabbed some Subway in the park and waited for Jet Star 2 or another nearby ride to reopen (yes, I know you're allowed to bring food into the park, and yes that would've been cheaper and smarter, but we didn't have much of any food in the car besides snacks and it's not like the Subway overcharged THAT much, so all in all who cares?).



Spider is a fun spinning coaster.


Like most spinning coasters, it spins.


Spider's theme is... a castle??? what? lol






Wild Mouse jank


Straight up, straight down. Just like Top Thrill Dragster. (this ride is actually nothing like Top Thrill Dragster)


Fire Dragon


Cannibal from across the park


If you want airtime at Lagoon, this is where you're gonna get it.


Wicked through the trees


Breakdown line


A double helix of death that's not quite as death-y as Titan's


Play a game of real-life Mouse Trap






SkyRide porn for coasterbill


pt 2


pt 3


Oh deer...




Steepest drop in the Western hemisphere



Luckily it was resolved after not too long and rides began to reopen. We went over to The Bat which wasn't really a priority but since it was there and had a 5 minute wait, definitely worth trying. Plus, I hadn't been on an SLC, so what's more fitting than riding my first (kiddie) SLC not far at all from the city of SLC? One slightly painful ride later, we got in line for Jet Star 2 (which had finally reopened), waited about 5 minutes before getting pranked by someone's magnetic hearing aid falling out and sticking in some unknown location near or on the ride, causing the ride to close for probably 20 minutes (we bailed after hearing the cause for closure). Right next door is a pretty cool flat, a Zamperla Air Race, which delivered a pretty fun ride.



something's wrong here....


The Bat

Around the time we finished Air Race, Jet Star 2 finally opened up (third time's the charm!) so we got the chance to ride for real this time. Following that, we decided it was pretty much time to get some sleep, so we left the park.



Last coaster on a very hot day before we leave the park



Cannibal - As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't hold a candle to most of the other big coasters of the trip, but it absolutely does deliver a very fun ride full of hangtime, a ridiculously steep drop, a landscaping and theming job similar to Maverick with a waterfall that actually gets you wet, and even an airtime-inducing double down. It's not really intense at all, but it delivers a very fun and smooth ride similar to newer B&M loopers but with a wonky lap bar and a Eurofighter-styled drop.


Roller Coaster - Surprisingly fun for such an old coaster. Definitely not smooth, but with a very recent retrack and new Millennium Flyer trains, it delivers a fun double-out-and-back airtime journey. Considering it's almost 100 years old, it could definitely be in worse shape. One of my favorite coasters in the park.


Spider - You better get this thing spinning like crazy if you're gonna ride it. If you're balanced, the ride is pretty mediocre and jerks you around a LOT. However, once you're unbalanced, the car's spin begins to act as a propeller and you lift up up and away from the troubles of life's wonky turns and into one of the most ridiculous ride experiences ever conceived by mankind that will surely leave a smile on your face. I'd call it the halfway point between a Pandemonium and Time Traveler. Underrated spinner for sure.


Colossus the Fire Dragon - Part of me came into this ride hoping it had any sliver of the awesomeness of ShockWave @ SFOT. While it's definitely a fun coaster and a rock solid fit for the park, it definitely has nothing on ShockWave as far as Schwarzkopfs go. It does, however, have a greyout helix that lands somewhere between the typical janky lateral-fest mine train helix and Titan's helix of actual death, and is pretty fun without bordering on headache.


Wicked - The bastard stepchild of Maverick and a kiddy coaster, Wicked has a launch with decent kick that goes all the way up a top hat, then down a 90 degree drop that's pretty enjoyable. It hits a fun overbank and a floaty zero-g roll that's pretty happy-fun-times. After that, though, you're pretty much out of luck in terms of interesting elements. It has some wacky overbanks that do absolutely nothing, an impostor airtime hill with no airtime, a pointless tunnel, and some random a** trick track swishy swishies before hitting the brakes (disclaimer: probably not in order and probably not the correct terminology for everything). Fun, but the first half is infinitely better than the second half. If it weren't for my out-and-back woodie love affair, this would probably be my second favorite coaster in the park.


Wild Mouse - Trims felt like they were turned off entirely. Absolutely out of control but also kinda cramped and uncomfortable (better than staple land on The Dark Knight Coaster though). As janky as any Wild Mouse should be and a fun time for the whole family.


The Bat - would probably be more bearable if it had lap bars instead of the bulky as f*ck OTSRs. kinda interesting things happen like twice if you ride in the back.


Air Race - Not my favorite flat at Lagoon (spoiler), but certainly fun and a little dizzying. The hangtime and forces you get are pretty enjoyable.


Jet Star 2 - Thanks to the stupid no single rider rule (why is this????), you better hope you're the heavier person of the two in your row. As I was not, I had to do the biggest leg spread of all time to fit in here and the experience was a little uncomfortable. Luckily the ride has some fun drops and some intense turns that make it worth that little bit of pain.




Disc Golf Course of Death Scorecard:

Par x1 (and I'm damn proud of it)

Discs Lost x1

Steps xWayTooMany

Stickers x93627

Burrs x17362

Other Spiky Death Things x27572


Lagoon Scorecard:

Cannibal x1

Roller Coaster x1

Spider x1

Colossus the Fire Dragon x2

Wicked x1

Wild Mouse x1

The Bat x1

Air Race x1

Jet Star 2 x1




stay tuned for the LAST update, Lagoon Day 2, featuring absolutely no pictures but some water park fun!

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Thanks for posting! It's nice to hear what others think of my home park.


Just a tip: You can exit the park at the south end campground exit and you'll be right by the Lagoon campground Subway which has regular prices and isn't limited in options like the in-park Subway. You'll have to walk across the parking lot and under Roller Coaster to re-enter the park though.

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Thanks for posting! It's nice to hear what others think of my home park.


Just a tip: You can exit the park at the south end campground exit and you'll be right by the Lagoon campground Subway which has regular prices and isn't limited in options like the in-park Subway. You'll have to walk across the parking lot and under Roller Coaster to re-enter the park though.


That's good to know. The Subway in-park didn't seem to overcharge as much as normal in-park restaurants, so it wasn't a huge deal. Mostly we just wanted to wait out the power outage.




I don't know why, but for some reason I never end up getting pictures from the last park day on ANY of my trips. I missed out on pictures on Day 2 of SFOT in 2015, Dollywood in 2016, and now Lagoon Day 2 in 2018. It's either laziness or my desire to just ride stuff instead of taking pictures all the time finally kicking in at the end of the trip. Who knows.


Taking advantage of BounceBack!, we found ourselves once again at the world's largest family-owned park. We began the day by waiting 15 minutes for Cannibal, getting another awesome ride on it (if you're gonna ride it you better go for an edge seat. it makes it 10x better), then attempting to walk around through the locker area for a second ride. This is when we discovered the stupidest park rule to ever exist in any park ever.


Apparently, if you didn't pay for a locker, you have to walk through the gift shop and all the way back around to get in line, whereas people who paid for lockers can just go through the (perfectly open!!!) locker area. What kind of dumba** rule is that???? They probably don't even check if you actually have a locker, but who came up with this? If someone wants to ride your ride again, but didn't have anything to put in a locker (we just got ice water cups every hour or so), you make them walk around a hilariously long loop just to get back in line??? I have so many questions about this rule, and I really hope it was just one idiot employee pulling stupid sh*t out of his a** and not a rule that park management actually wants anyone to enforce.


Anyway, we walked all the way around for a second spin on this steep-dropped beast, then checked out its next-door neighbor, a really unique flat ride that does some really bizarre stuff. Yup. We rode Samurai (which had been down the entire day prior) and had a fun time, then headed to Lagoon A Beach to check out some of the (hopefully) fun slides there.


The very first thing you'll notice is a money grab that puts Cannibal's lockers to shame. You have to pay to rent tubes here. Between that and the Cannibal locker rule, our second day at Lagoon was starting to feel a lot more like a day at a corporate park than a day at a family-owned park. Look, I get that this park needs money, but there are better ways to get it than charging people to use tubes and making people buy lockers to get better access to the entrance of a ride from the exit.


Either way, we hadn't brought the money for anything but water cups, so it was time to check out the body slides and only the body slides (luckily there's a grand total of like two tube slides, so the tube rentals are even more of a ripoff). Almost every slide is connected to one of two complexes, so the first stop was the really tall complex that has two big-drop body slides (the kind you see at every waterpark ever with the big ~45-degree drop), two long blue body slides, and one tube slide (that we didn't do thanks to tube rentals being an upcharge). The two blue body slides were first, Sea Snake and Rip Curl.


Sea Snake was pretty much the most boring water slide ever invented, and combined with some back-breaking seams it wasn't exactly the most pleasant experience either. Rip Curl was a little faster, and while its seams were a little rougher, it had some fun moments, namely a pitch black tunnel that lasts about 3/4 of the ride. SFOT needs to add one of these longa** tunnels to the second half of each of Titan's helices to increase the realistic theming of actual death.


Next were the two body slides with the huge drops. Liquid Lightning has the bigger drop, so that one was first. I saw some bigger people actually get stuck in the flat section before the drop, and that pretty much sums up the experience. It's fun, but the section before the drop is really slow and you only speed up in the second half of the drop. The other slide with a big drop is called The Drop, and despite having the smaller drop is a far superior ride in my view. You start by going through a fast clockwise helix, then switch directions Maverick-style into a super tight counterclockwise helix, then out of nowhere you see a faint light and go flying down the huge drop. After the big tower slides, we headed to the smaller tower with the Twist/Shout/Holler/Wipeout/Whatever speed slides. The one on the far right was closed, but overall I quite enjoyed these ones.


Following that we were pretty much done with the waterpark, so we headed to the dry park for a ride in the back row of Roller Coaster, two rides on Spider, a ride on Wicked, and then a relaxing and fun SkyRide trip to the other side of the park, where we took a last sunset ride on Cannibal before departing the park.




Some things to note:

- the waterpark water here is freezing and if it's not at least 95 degrees you're probably gonna be at least a little chilly if you're spending most of your time hopping in and out of water with the whole slide dealio

- I seriously had a hard time remembering the names of the slides and had to check Wikipedia because Lagoon's own website apparently doesn't even know what slides they have in their waterpark. Some names may be mixed around as a result.

- The efficiency of the tall slide complex is absolutely terrible. Because the three slides on the lower level end in the same pool and the two slides on the upper level end in the same pool, they can only have people in one of the taller ones and one of the shorter ones at a time, leading to some lines that are way longer than they could be if they literally added some dividers between the exit pools instead of having the slides end in the same pool.




Samurai - An absolute blast of a flat ride. Unpredictable enough to not be nauseating and forceful enough to still be entertaining. I still prefer giant frisbees and Screamin Swings, but after those I can't think of a flat I like more than Samurai.


Sea Snake - Complete waste of a slide. The most interesting part is a super mild double down that does nothing except maybe give a little extra speed that is burned up in the next five seconds of the ride.


Rip Curl - The tunnel of death is hilarious and there's even a pretty good drop while in the tunnel of death. Most of this ride is spent in the tunnel of death so I honestly have no clue what else this slide does besides the tunnel of death.


Liquid Lightning - The layout is pretty much the same as Otto @ Splashin Safari, with a helix and a drop. Pretty fun but the drop doesn't have the kick to it that you'd expect from a big drop like this.


The Drop - Insane sensation of speed through the figure-8 thing and then a big drop that's taken at a ridiculous speed, especially compared to Liquid Lightning's. Quite enjoyable and the best body slide at Lagoon A Beach.


Twist, Shout, and Pipeline - I have no clue which of these is which, but that's okay because they're all about equal in my book. The sensation of speed, drops, and high banking make these some of the most fun slides in the park. Probably tied for my second favorite slide here after The Drop.


SkyRide - The real star attraction of Lagoon, this classic ride/relaxing travel mechanism hybrid allows for a slow but comfy trip from Wild Mouse all the way to Cannibal or vice versa. Considering there's basically nothing in between, you're not missing a thing by taking it!




Ride Scorecard:

Cannibal x3

Samurai x1

Sea Snake x1

Rip Curl x1

Liquid Lightning x1

The Drop x1

Twist x1

Shout x1

Pipeline x1

Roller Coaster x1

Spider x2

Wicked x1

SkyRide x1


Exercise Scorecard:

Steps x11k




Top 10 Water Slides BEFORE Lagoon A Beach:

1. Wildebeest @ Splashin' Safari

2. Bermuda Triangle @ White Water Bay

3. Whirlpool @ White Water Bay

4. The Viper @ ZDT's

5. Big Bender @ White Water Bay

6. Dragon's Revenge @ Schlitterbahn New Braunfels

7. Mammoth @ Splashin' Safari

8. Thunder Rapids @ White Water Bay

9. Master Blaster @ Schlitterbahn New Braunfels

10. The Viper's Tail @ ZDT's



Top 10 Water Slides AFTER Lagoon A Beach:

1. Wildebeest @ Splashin' Safari

2. Bermuda Triangle @ White Water Bay

3. Whirlpool @ White Water Bay

4. The Viper @ ZDT's

5. Big Bender @ White Water Bay

6. Dragon's Revenge @ Schlitterbahn New Braunfels

7. Mammoth @ Splashin' Safari

8. Thunder Rapids @ White Water Bay

9. Master Blaster @ Schlitterbahn New Braunfels

10. The Drop @ Lagoon A Beach

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Great report! Lagoon is one of those parks I really want to make it to someday, but not sure when I'll get there because of the location.


Cannibal and Wicked both look really interesting. Does the latter's launch continue up the hill? From your photos it looks like there are fins on the hill itself.


On renting rafts, did they not offer free rafts at the base of the slide? Many water parks I see give you the option to rent rafts to avoid having to wait for one at the lazy river or water slide. But I don't think I've seen one that has no other option than to rent one.


Also I'm a big disc golf fan myself. I just use the regular ultimate discs (to try and improve in-game throws), but I've come across some really cool courses. My two favorites are in Worcester (Newton Hill) and then there's a random one I liked in the absolute middle of nowhere New Hampshire.

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Wicked's launch does continue up the top hat, which is pretty cool and unique.


We didn't see any tube stations in front of rides, though if we had REALLY wanted to bypass the system we probably could've just asked some people who rented tubes to borrow them while they sunbathed.

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The thing with the gift shop/lockers when exiting Cannibal is stupid. Basically, they fenced off that area when Cannibal first opened forcing you to go through the gift shop every time because the line stretched all the way over towards the front of the gift shop anyway and they thought if they let people through that other area they might cut in line. Originally there was a cubby system managed by employees so there was zero chance of getting to the other side. The next year when they built the lockers they had to give them access to both the entrance and exit so that you can get to them both before and after the ride, but they still want to keep you going through the gift shop if possible. The point you seem to have overlooked is that those lockers are completely free for an hour so the ideal thing to do is just use them.

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