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Dollywood Discussion Thread

p. 734 - Lightning Rod closed for remainder of 2020 season

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Now if they had an unload dock and a load dock like a lot of parks are going to then two train ops on this might work out

I'm kind of doubting this since (non-expert observations ahead:) it's super quick to unload riders from the coaster, but time consuming when loading and checking restraints. That train in the unload station would probably still be waiting there for a while for the loading riders. If dispatch times were significantly faster, I'm sure it would constitute having a separate dock. Heck, Mystery Mine has two load/unload docks, but the park only uses the front one.

 

As for the previous conversation, running faster/slower... I don't care, as long as it keeps running at all. Still a world class roller coaster, either way!

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You mean like this. . . (pssst, all wooden coasters run on steel rails, well, with the exception of the flying turns)   Also, who would have thought the first RMC coaster to get the RM

Yeah, the difference to the rider between I-Box track and the current track is really minimal. The only major difference would be that the ride would actually be open when you wanted to ride it and wh

Their season pass renewal system is running on the same server as Lightning Rod. 

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Now if they had an unload dock and a load dock like a lot of parks are going to then two train ops on this might work out

I'm kind of doubting this since (non-expert observations ahead:) it's super quick to unload riders from the coaster, but time consuming when loading and checking restraints. That train in the unload station would probably still be waiting there for a while for the loading riders. If dispatch times were significantly faster, I'm sure it would constitute having a separate dock. Heck, Mystery Mine has two load/unload docks, but the park only uses the front one.

 

As for the previous conversation, running faster/slower... I don't care, as long as it keeps running at all. Still a world class roller coaster, either way!

Disney does it as they claim it's faster. They have unload docks for most coasters. And not having to wait for folks to get off does seem to speed it up. Yes the train still stacks but while it's stacked they go ahead and get the people off saving time at the load dock.

 

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It's probably going to be the new area that Dollywood said they would be building during the last part of their 300 Million Dollar Project. It has been said for years that the new area would start working it's way up the train loop. If you look at Google Maps, the easier way to access that area is River Battle so that's probably going to be the new hub.. when LR was built Dollywood said they wouldn't build another coaster for a while as they had plenty of other projects they wanted to do

 

Also late last season they sent out a survey about new theme ideas for the new area.. it's a huge area, I saw it a week or so ago myself.. to big for a coaster..

 

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I was there Saturday and got to see the land clearing first hand. If you ride the right side of WE and/or Fire Chaser you can see this well from either lift hill.

 

The dirt being moved is more for flattening than just clearing for a coaster. Like what they did for WE or LR. The flattening area merges perfectly well with the access road that goes behind/ through Fire Chaser. The construction begins on the hill above the retaining wall where river battle used to be. They are pretty much flattening out the whole area behind Thunderhead to the tracks. So its a significant area being cleared. I don't think they would be clearing that much land for just one coaster. All evidence , including hints Pete has dropped, points to an area expansion. More than likely, we will see them shooting for a 2019 opening. Construction will go on through 2018 on the hill, then between 2018 and 2019 they will connect the area in the off season.

 

A few other items to bring up:

 

LR has not been trimmed. I rode it on day two and its running close to what its designed to. IMHO - in all the downtime issues in 2017, the launch got a little too strong and that when a lot of people rode it thinking that was the norm. I remember the summer of 2017 that I literally got ejector air in the front seat going over the first hump. It didnt float like my first ride. As I have said, after the Dolly humps there is no difference and the ride still hauls donkeys.

 

If you look up in the parking lot of Splash Country, they are storing the parts from River Battle up there. So Hershend plans on reusing them somewhere. So the speculations about it going to Valdosta could be true or they could be planing on putting it up in the expansion area. thoughts?

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Yeah, everything matches hints Pete and others have dropped about the new area.. when FC Express was built they said they needed the space for future expansion leading most to believe that one of the paths would be the maintenance road beside FC. A simple Google maps image shows that's the next best place for the area to attach to the park would be the retaining wall around river battle.. The area being cleared is headed up towards the train loop which was another of the hints passed along a few years ago..

 

All of that, coupled with the recent surveys from last year looking for theme ideas and more leads me to believe it's an expansion.. River Battle hasn't been very popular at Dollywood so I'm not so sure they are saving it for Dollywoods new area but they might be.. I'd say it's going to GA or they have it listed for sale online.

 

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Does that mean a new coaster will feature in this area? If so, any indication/idea as to what kind? I would hope/assume a Mack, considering SDC just got one. But hopefully a more "Helix" type layout with launches and better than the neutered looking Time Traveler.

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better than the neutered looking Time Traveler.
Always amazed by the enthusiasts who judge a ride before it's even open....

 

I'm not judging. The layout is statistically small. I never said the ride or experience will suck.....because I haven't rode yet. But it is neutered....in the sense that it's smaller and obviously the course isn't as intense as Helix: 1) It's for fact shorter and 2) it's a spinner....not sure where your snide comment applies?

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Not to sound like an enthusiast wet dreaming here.. but, if they're building a new "land" I wouldn't be surprised for a B&M (hopefully a Hyper) to be the star attraction after so much negative press on Lightning Rods reliability. Looking forward to a formal announcement on this project!

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It's very possible it might be a mixture of things.. one theory I heard the other day and have read on two websites now is a ski resort themed area. The site quoted a survey from several years ago that asked questions about a snow themed coaster. According to that site they called it an "Ice House Coaster". I never received that survey but I did receive one last year that talked about a new themed areas with multiple attractions and one of the themes was "snow".. another one was lumberjack (we already have a similar are to that) and I can't remember the rest.. it might of been a circus area.. I can't remember but the snow area stuck in my mind due to Dolly's abandoned plan to built a snow park in Nashville.

 

A snow themed area would be great for Dollywood and could even include a snow park, several rides, and a lot of things!

 

A ski themed area could very well have on site cabins! Would the be real and rentable? Or just stores and for looks?

 

Hearing talk about cabins is very plausible because when people hear "truths" about projects, they hear them in parts.. cabins might be part of the theme if it's snow or ski resort themed

 

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Edited by dstephe9
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What is access going to be like to this area? Ie- where would you enter it from? I was riding Thunderhead last week and was kinda baffled myself at how large the area is.
Rumor has it and Pete himself, several years ago mentioned one of the accesses would be the service road beside firechaser.. a lot of us here think the other access will be where river battle was and the new stage area is being built.. that would make a nice hub area

 

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I was planning on visiting December 21-22 for my Christmas visit this year. However considered coming January 2-3 because I saw they added those days. When I come for Christmas, I'm there more for the shows than other times in the year, although low waits on Lightning Rod are always welcome. I came between Christmas and New Years last year and the crowds were crazy. Any ideas for those of you who have visited before Christmas before?

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Depends on the weather.. it really does. Mild Christmas and it will be packed that week.. if it's bone chilling cold, who knows haha.. same for the few days before Christmas.

 

Here is a sample of the weather here after Christmas last year when you visited. nearly 70 degrees on the 26th haha.. the year before I was almost as warm.. that temp combined with people being home is what makes Dollywood so packed on those days.

 

If it's 35 degrees who knows what the turnout will be.

 

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