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Dollywood Discussion Thread

P. 771: Onsite employee housing under construction at Dollywood

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So the reason a coaster has to close due to too low of an operating temperature is because of an issue with the wheels? Or is there something else that factors in as well?

 

Yup, thats what I was told..Issues with the wheels.. Dunno how true it is or not but thats what the ride ops said.. Pretty sure he said they expand and cause it to run much slower but again he could have been pulling that out of his you know what

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So the reason a coaster has to close due to too low of an operating temperature is because of an issue with the wheels? Or is there something else that factors in as well?

 

Yup, thats what I was told..Issues with the wheels.. Dunno how true it is or not but thats what the ride ops said.. Pretty sure he said they expand and cause it to run much slower but again he could have been pulling that out of his you know what

 

 

Basically, except cold causes contraction, not expansion.

 

Most coasters run a huge risk of valleying when the temperature is too low, especially if the trains are too light/not full of people. Hence why a lot of coasters that are able to are tested with water dummies on mornings when it isn't warm out or when it's windy. In fact, some coasters won't open at all until the sun/warmth comes out in full force, because they don't have water dummies available and it's too risky to send an empty train.

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So the reason a coaster has to close due to too low of an operating temperature is because of an issue with the wheels? Or is there something else that factors in as well?

 

Yup, thats what I was told..Issues with the wheels.. Dunno how true it is or not but thats what the ride ops said.. Pretty sure he said they expand and cause it to run much slower but again he could have been pulling that out of his you know what

 

I was told that it has to do with the grease used. When it gets cold, it hardens leaving the wheels less lubricated.

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Was there yesterday and as stated they are laying track for firechaser.. The only track I saw though was the track coming out of the station or showroom, which ever building is currently being built.. No other track, or even stands have been placed yet.. The track is green like in the video. Really, not to much to see.. they had the track covered with clear plastic even and only about 5 foot was coming out of the building

 

Also eagle did go down on Saturday but was only down for a little while maybe an hr. Don't know why it keeps going down but looks like another poster said it went down Friday to. I noticed when I rode it Saturday night they where having station problems.. It didn't want to line up with the gates so the op kept saying "reset" and everyone touched their "buttons" and the train inched fwd about a foot.. They did this 90% of the time when the train came into the station.. Maybe this is whats causing it to go down

 

The park was PACKED.. When I got there shortly after 1 they where already parking in G and H lot (Splash Country lower Lots).. At that time all the coasters where a walk-on with Eagle being a 5 minute wait.. Oddly enough blazing furys line was out the door and down the hill!!! I waited and came back to fury around dark and it only had a 5 minute wait.. I like how they put Christmas lights inside fury! After dark the coasters had a surge of riders!! I hit tornado first and it had a 15 minute wait.. Next I hit Eagle and its line was out the door which is between 45 - 1 hr.. I think it took us about 50 minutes.. MM also had a 45 min wait after dark so I skipped it and Thunderhead was a walk-on after dark but mainly bc it had all trains running unlike the other coasters except eagle (Eagle had all trains like always)

 

The shows stayed full all day but I finally was able to see a Smoky mountain Christmas and it was decent.

 

Leaving the park was the worse.. The line for the trams was all the way down to the ticket booth. For us in G and H we had to get off in lot F and catch a special tram to G and H.. This was bc dollywood didn't want all the trams crossing traffic to get to splash country while a lot of guest where trying to leave.. I noticed some people parked in G and H where getting off at Tram stop D & E and just crossing the HWY to splash country.. This was probably a good Idea that some of you may want to use if you park in G and H

 

Overall I had a lot of fun!! Temp was great! Just a very very busy day.. I have never had to park in splash country to visit dollywood! haha

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^I was so tempted to go Saturday but i was worried about the crowds. I've experienced some 'fish-tailing' in the back seat of the tram (4 car Chance tram) coming down the hill from Splash Country's parking lot before...it was wild and scary at all the same time.

 

Your report reminded me of the other Weather Condition that Dollywood has and that is that they go to One Train Operation when it gets down to 45 Degrees - for Wild Eagle, Thunderhead & Tornado. So that can really make the lines long long long...and they don't do a very good of job of explaining this either.

 

this post is from Nozzy back in oct 15, 2012 -

Last year I was told by operators that

-Coasters open when the temperature is above 40 degrees

-Coasters close when the temperature drops below 36 degrees

-Flats (or at least the Screamin' Swing) close when the temperature is below 32 degrees.

 

All rides should be open except the water rides, and Adventure Mountain closes at dusk. I went twice last year, and could get plenty of rides in and then switch to shows when it got chillier and the coasters closed. You should have a blast!

 

I think most of the rides in the County Fair section can operate under 32, it's worth checking out if you're at the park and the coasters start shutting down.

 

And my last tip is to Wear a Hoodie! Dollywood has a No Hats policy, so no hats on the coasters....hoodies are good though.

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Your report reminded me of the other Weather Condition that Dollywood has and that is that they go to One Train Operation when it gets down to 45 Degrees - for Wild Eagle, Thunderhead & Tornado. So that can really make the lines long long long...and they don't do a very good of job of explaining this either.

 

This policy is mandated by GCI in their ride operations manual. For a short time, all coasters adhered to it but don't any longer. As of this moment, Thunderhead is the only coaster that does this.

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I was lucky and got a Q2Q Saturday, the wait wasn't too bad with that, and all morning there weren't any lines. Then at night there weren't any lines from what I saw. I thought I didn't really need the q2q for the rides, but I must have been at a show or eating when the lines were long.

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Your report reminded me of the other Weather Condition that Dollywood has and that is that they go to One Train Operation when it gets down to 45 Degrees - for Wild Eagle, Thunderhead & Tornado. So that can really make the lines long long long...and they don't do a very good of job of explaining this either.

 

This policy is mandated by GCI in their ride operations manual. For a short time, all coasters adhered to it but don't any longer. As of this moment, Thunderhead is the only coaster that does this.

 

 

Thanks for sharing that, thats interesting and good to know. It would be awesome if there was a fix for whatever is the reasoning behind the GCI policy...wonder if its the compression brakes vs. magnetic brakes?? It's the only coaster in the park that has just compression brakes. MM has magnetic, compression and tires, TT has magnetic and compression, BF has magnetic....so i wonder if it's just a matter of time for Thunderhead? Or is there another reason altogether?? anyway thanks again for the info!!

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So I really hate to be one of "those people" but I need to ask.

 

We're planning on going to Dollywood for the first time ever either the 1st or 2nd weekend of December. We're basing it entirely on weather as it's an 11 hour drive and we're leaving from the office (in New York) on Friday to be there on Saturday... then driving home Sunday. It seems like an amazing amount of driving but when I found out that I could ride coasters in December there wasn't really much to think about. I understand that the coasters may close at night due to low temps, but that's not the end of the world as we'd still get a good 6 or 7 hours of riding in and I'm sure there's plenty of stuff to do when it gets dark (including Blazing Fury).

 

I did have a few questions though...

 

Is the quick queue something you generally need on a Saturday in December? Is it something you should decide on beforehand or can you wait to see how the lines are first (basically I'm asking if they sell out frequently or if this really isn't an issue).

 

Also, assuming temperatures do shut the coasters down, what else do you suggest checking out? Any particular shows / rides or areas that aren't dependent on weather (besides Blazing Fury)?

 

Finally, does anyone have any general park tips since we've never been there before? We're planning on getting there right when they open.

Edited by coasterbill
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^If it were me and I was driving that great distance, then I would get a Qbot. They’re good for rides and shows. You have to book all the shows at the Qbot booth, but rides can be booked anywhere in the park. TnTornadoX has mentioned on here that you can pre-order a Qbot on the Dollywood website…so that’s a good tip too. I’ve never seen them sell out of Qbots, but that’s just my experience with it. Yes, Saturdays are busy during the Christmas event in November and December. It gets busier as the day progresses, people come to see the lights especially and the shows are very popular as well. As for shows, new this year is Dollywoods A Christmas Carol…featuring a hologram of Dolly in each performance. Check the website for all the other shows. There’s a lot to do and see at Dollywood…lots! Hope that helps some, i know others will have more advice and suggestions.

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Also, in comparison to other theme parks prices, Dollywood's Q2Q is very resonably priced. You get the best seats for the shows, and very little wait in line for everything it covers. I'm a season pass holder, and still sometimes get it during Christmas. Me N' tha fam will be there that same weekend. Have a great time. Dollywood is awesome. And this time of the year is just magical.

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I was lucky and got a Q2Q Saturday, the wait wasn't too bad with that, and all morning there weren't any lines. Then at night there weren't any lines from what I saw. I thought I didn't really need the q2q for the rides, but I must have been at a show or eating when the lines were long.

 

Eagle and MM had crazy lines right at dark.. Around 6:30 I guess.. Eagle had the entire queue line filled up and was down to the door. MM was just half way down the steps but MM is slow at loading.. Besides that, lines weren't bad at all..

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I am not much of a show type of guy,but I would highly recommend going to see Twas the Night before Christmas to anyone going to Dollywood during the Smoky Mountain Christmas event. It was a great show on par with something you would see at a theater, also Christmas Carol was very good also. After seeing both of these I know why alot of older people go just for the shows. Anyone going on a Saturday I would recommend the q2q just for the shows, the lines are extremely long for the shows and I saw many people not get into shows and have to wait till the next showing which is usually two hours after. With a gold pass I got the q2q for two people for 35 bucks so definatly pays off, also there was almost never a wait on the q2q for any of the coasters when I reserved them on Saturday. I am not sure if other Saturdays will be as busy as last Saturday as I had to park in the splash country parking lot after leaving to eat something. So I would definatly recomend the q2q it is a really good deal and worth the money.

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I am not much of a show type of guy,but I would highly recommend going to see Twas the Night before Christmas to anyone going to Dollywood during the Smoky Mountain Christmas event. It was a great show on par with something you would see at a theater, also Christmas Carol was very good also. After seeing both of these I know why alot of older people go just for the shows. Anyone going on a Saturday I would recommend the q2q just for the shows, the lines are extremely long for the shows and I saw many people not get into shows and have to wait till the next showing which is usually two hours after. With a gold pass I got the q2q for two people for 35 bucks so definatly pays off, also there was almost never a wait on the q2q for any of the coasters when I reserved them on Saturday. I am not sure if other Saturdays will be as busy as last Saturday as I had to park in the splash country parking lot after leaving to eat something. So I would definatly recomend the q2q it is a really good deal and worth the money.

 

I was going to say, if you go on a Sat, especially for the shows get a q2q because the lines where VERY VERY long..

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Also if you are going for more than one day I would recommend one person in your party get a gold season pass, it really comes in handy with parking, and the 20% off is pretty much good for anything in the park so that also came in handy very much throughout the weekend. The season pass is also good for next year also, so I usually go once a year around Christmas time so it works out to where I only need to buy a pass every other year. You will enjoy yourself so much that it will become an annual trip. It is the best trip I take every year, and the one I look forward too the most. The attention to detail they put into the Christmas lights and decorations is astounding. Dollywood really is on their way to becoming a top tier park in my opinion, if their not there already. I also live in New York its about a 13 hour drive for me but is well worth it every year. I would recommend next year planning ahead of time so you can go thursday-Sunday because there is so much other things to do in the surrounding area that a weekend isn't enough time to really experience the area completely.

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So Firechaser Express's trains were finally revealed at IAAPA today. While I really like the locomotive design, I feel the trains would fit the theming better as fire trucks.

 

I had trouble linking the direct photo from this phone so heres the link instead.

https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152055061697240&id=239284692239&set=pcb.10152055068627240&source=49&refid=17&ref=stream

 

- Can't go wrong with a locomotive design though.

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So Firechaser Express's trains were finally revealed at IAAPA today. While I really like the locomotive design, I feel the trains would fit the theming better as fire trucks.

 

I had trouble linking the direct photo from this phone so heres the link instead.

https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152055061697240&id=239284692239&set=pcb.10152055068627240&source=49&refid=17&ref=stream

 

- Can't go wrong with a locomotive design though.

 

Actually, there's a reason why they are locomotive themed. Who's ready for a history lesson?

 

I spoke with Anthony Esparza, the VP of Guest Experience/Creative Design for Herschend Family Entertainment, and he shed some light on the ride's historical influence.

Back in the 1930's and 1940's the smokey mountains weren't very accessible by roads, instead, most of the paths through the mountains were traversed by railroads. Whenever a fire broke out up in the mountains, Volunteer Firefighters would take "Fire Trains" up into the hills, get as close as they could to the fire, then take their tools into the forest to fight the fires! So there's actually some real historical significance behind it!

 

Pretty cool huh?

image.jpg.0288225c8b17948977647eac6a1a334a.jpg

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