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Dollywood Discussion Thread

P. 771: Onsite employee housing under construction at Dollywood

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21 hours ago, coasterbill said:

I really can't stress enough how people have been saying since half-way through the first season that the ride has been slowed down, the launch is slower and whatever else. I'm not saying that people should be happy with a diminished ride experience and suck it up so it operates, I'm saying that it's **probably** not diminished and the "I rode it when it was better" crowd is lying to themselves so they feel cool for being one of the six people to successfully ride it when it first opened.

I have no doubt that the day the ride opens and the train is half empty for social distancing and it's cold and crappy out these people will be blowing up the internet talking about how much better it used to be but let's wait and see if that's actually even true. I'm optimistic that it won't be.

PS: everyone also complained about a pothole endlessly that won't exist any more, so maybe it will actually be better!

Now Mystery Mine? That's a different story. lol

I've ridden Lightning Rod when it first opened and I rode it today. Other than the slight slowdown going over the crest of the first hill, there is NO difference in the ride experience. Although, like I said above, the ride was very rough. All my friends that rode it thought the same. Still super-fast, intense and fun, but rough. The ride is very short too, like a minute long, but still one of the best I've ridden just because it is so relentless. Not as good as Steel Vengeance, but I doubt nothing ever will be, but still fun as Hell. Also, there was no social distancing on Lightning Rod. All seats were filled today. as they were on many of the rides.

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29 minutes ago, u4icmusic said:

I've ridden Lightning Rod when it first opened and I rode it today. Other than the slight slowdown going over the crest of the first hill, there is NO difference in the ride experience. Although, like I said above, the ride was very rough. All my friends that rode it thought the same. Still super-fast, intense and fun, but rough. The ride is very short too, like a minute long, but still one of the best I've ridden just because it is so relentless. Not as good as Steel Vengeance, but I doubt nothing ever will be, but still fun as Hell. Also, there was no social distancing on Lightning Rod. All seats were filled today. as they were on many of the rides.

That is all I needed to hear! Excitement level back to 10 ha  I don't mind rough so that's fine. 

Hmmmm interesting on the end of social distancing, but I get it. We don't need to like it/agree but just factually: people will be returning to parks this year. Maybe not back to normal, but close. Limited capacity will make lines just brutal, with cases down, vaccines up, more ordered etc tough call but I get it. 
I'm driving anyway and will self quarantine when I get back, even if I'm vaxxed, to be safe anyway. 

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Rough? Did we ride the same ride? Seemed really smooth to me on my rides. Like any other ibox.  I'll get back this weekend to try it a few more times. 

 

I don't think any parks are skipping rows on coasters anymore. 

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I am very surprised you found the coaster rough. That would genuinely shock me, since 2/3 of the track is now IBox. The existing wooden parts - that's fair game.

Haven't ridden Lightning Rod, but I've ridden a half-dozen or so IBox coasters and none of them were remotely rough in any shape or form. Not trying to negate your experience (since I haven't ridden), but that is why I would be super shocked!

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14 hours ago, thrillseeker4552 said:

I am very surprised you found the coaster rough. That would genuinely shock me, since 2/3 of the track is now IBox. The existing wooden parts - that's fair game.

Haven't ridden Lightning Rod, but I've ridden a half-dozen or so IBox coasters and none of them were remotely rough in any shape or form. Not trying to negate your experience (since I haven't ridden), but that is why I would be super shocked!

I totally agree with you. That's why I was so surprised. My friends also found it rough while others at the park though it was smooth. The people sitting in the front of the trains had a smoother experience. I only rode once in row 9 and to me it was rough. Still fast as Hell and super fun though. A top coaster for sure. There were two rollbacks yesterday when I was there, so the ride was down a lot of the time considering the park was only open from 10 am to 6 pm. I left early but I heard the ride opened up again at about 5:30 pm. Ride times were close to two hours in the afternoon, so I'll ride it again when I go next week. They are assigning rows now, so you cannot pick a front row or front of train seat at this time. Not sure if this is a permanent change or temporary because of COVID. The ride operators said the ride is running at the same speeds and 2019 and it sure felt fast to me once we got over the first crest. They also only ran one train yesterday, so hopefully they will get a second train running to help cut down on the wait times.

 

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I am intrigued: besides construction work, why is it that they cleared SO many trees around Lightning Rod? Is there any other reason why they cut so many?

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16 minutes ago, oriolat said:

I am intrigued: besides construction work, why is it that they cleared SO many trees around Lightning Rod? Is there any other reason why they cut so many?

I dislike it too.

Some are speculating that trees were removed all around the layout to prevent potential clearance issues down the line without having to bring in maintenance to cut tree limbs every year, others are thinking that they are keeping the area relatively clear so that they can replace the rest of the Topper Track with I-Box track at a later date.

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21 minutes ago, A.J. said:

I dislike it too.

Some are speculating that trees were removed all around the layout to prevent potential clearance issues down the line without having to bring in maintenance to cut tree limbs every year, others are thinking that they are keeping the area relatively clear so that they can replace the rest of the Topper Track with I-Box track at a later date.

They removed a ton of trees around Tennessee Tornado too. They are still lying on the ground.

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If you ride Drop Line, you'll see they've also been clearing trees in the woods out behind the leveled sections behind Wildwood Grove.  This isn't some path clearing for a ride, it just seems like they thinned the woods.  They seem to have cut down trees everywhere around the park.  Did they get a deal on quantity removed?

 

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40 minutes ago, tndank said:

If you ride Drop Line, you'll see they've also been clearing trees in the woods out behind the leveled sections behind Wildwood Grove.  This isn't some path clearing for a ride, it just seems like they thinned the woods.  They seem to have cut down trees everywhere around the park.  Did they get a deal on quantity removed?

 

That might be for the second phase of Wildwood Grove?

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2 hours ago, u4icmusic said:

That might be for the second phase of Wildwood Grove?

I mean, could be. But this is even further back from the two huge plots of land they have already cleared and graded back there.

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7 hours ago, PKI Jizzman said:

If it can run consistently over the next month and MM reopens with no issues, I gotta visit. Really LR's unpredictability was the only thing keeping me from going down there. 

Yeah...I mean I pulled the trigger and still made plans but I always made sure I had it "open ended" like I had several days planned for the area just to maximize the chance it'd be open. It will be nice to think I can plan for a single day (which makes my overall trip much easier to plan) and assume it'll be open. 
And yup, despite the original concern I had people have already confirmed it doesn't feel any different so yup, we got the same LRod BUT actually reliable!

Only "issue" now will be the debate about is it wood, steel, or hybrid and I have seen some intense debate already. I'm a huge nerd, but even I don't care enough to get into that one XD

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I know anything thats new will need some time to iron out, and early season in general always needs some adjustment time, but yeah....... not a sterling beginning to the new reliable LRod XD 

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5 hours ago, JJLehto said:

 

Yeah...I mean I pulled the trigger and still made plans but I always made sure I had it "open ended" like I had several days planned for the area just to maximize the chance it'd be open. It will be nice to think I can plan for a single day (which makes my overall trip much easier to plan) and assume it'll be open. 
And yup, despite the original concern I had people have already confirmed it doesn't feel any different so yup, we got the same LRod BUT actually reliable!

Only "issue" now will be the debate about is it wood, steel, or hybrid and I have seen some intense debate already. I'm a huge nerd, but even I don't care enough to get into that one XD

I'm 5 hours away, and if I drove down there, paid full price for admission, and it didn't open all day I'd be pissed. I mean is there really a way to find out if it's running then day of other than seeing people post on socials about it? Or is that site posted above dead accurate? Smokey Mountains are cool but hotel room cost is gonna add up if you're just down there literally waiting for the day that it's actually operational. 

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16 minutes ago, PKI Jizzman said:

I'm 5 hours away, and if I drove down there, paid full price for admission, and it didn't open all day I'd be pissed. I mean is there really a way to find out if it's running then day of other than seeing people post on socials about it? Or is that site posted above dead accurate? Smokey Mountains are cool but hotel room cost is gonna add up if you're just down there literally waiting for the day that it's actually operational. 

Give it a week or two.  When it's running every day without major problem, take a shot and come down.  There's a coaster event in a month or two.  Not sure which group.  Might be a good time to hit the park, get some ERT and only spend a bit more than regular tickets.  And their coaster event Thrills in the Hills is in June, I think.

This has to be temporary.  I'm hopeful it'll be up and running as much as all their other coasters not named Mystery Mine very soon.  

The site times posted pull from the parks wait time system.  You're seeing what is displayed on the tvs in the park and app.  queue-times.com to look at more parks.

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, tndank said:

I mean, could be. But this is even further back from the two huge plots of land they have already cleared and graded back there.

I was hoping they would make the train two stops instead of the loop. I'd like to see a second train station in Wildwood grove. That would save a lot of walking since they don't have sky buckets.

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