I've found a nifty tool...https://public.tableau.com/views/CedarPointInteractiveCrowdCalendar/CPCrowdPredictor?:embed=y&:display_count=ye&:showVizHome=no
Just input the Forecast, Temp that's expected, the date you plan on going...shows estimated crowd and estimated wait times at different times of the day. But when I get there, I usually just look at the parking lot and go from there. And yes, I wasn't kidding on the earlier post...I ditch everything so I'm not weighed down for the first 6 hours or so.
Early entry with PP, (Don't be weighed down) I usually go to the Resort entrance and beeline to Steel Vengeance. First time for this one, so I'm guessing after the first ride the park will be open anyways. But it maybe worth getting there earlier and seeing if the marina entrance has less people. Remember, the Coaster Freaks will be gearing up for Coastermania next week. There might be a lot of people at the Resort Entrance because they know its a shorter sprint...I mean walk. Safety first!
A couple of other tidbits - Sometimes a traffic pointer wants to know why I'm headed to the backside, I tell 'em I have reservations at Lighthouse Point for that night and want to minimize my down time for checking in later in the day. It's always worked for me, but I've only been asked twice out of maybe 40 visits. And most times I do have reservations anyways.
I've heard they maybe a little more strict this year, but the worst thing that can happen is to find a good spot and walk the distance. Using the Resort Shuttle phone works, too. (For folks who may have a tough time with the walk).
Day trips I always recommend the RNR HOF, and hit up a B Spot on your way back to Sandusky.