First the very necessary thanks to Six Flags, Brandon, and TPR for the opportunity to cover the ride during construction. There is still a lot of work to do, but it is already seriously impressive. Now remember that I'm an old man, and I don't like anything - but Goliath genuinely looks like it's shaping up to be awesome; a definite several-changes-of-underpants ride. Really appreciative of the enormous amounts of time that Brandon and Six Flags have given to us to follow construction. Everyone involved is clearly very excited about this, and with good reason.
It was cold! Now to be honest, the cold doesn't bother me too much, but my phone wasn't having any of it! The poor thing shut down several times while we were walking around, and I ended up using hand-warmers in my pockets to keep the phone warm - sacrificing my fingers in the process (you don't want to know what I'm using to type..)
Our group of weary travelers..
And here we go .. I know it's stupid, but there's something oddly cool about being lead past "Keep Out" and/or "Employee Only" signs.
This large space in the structure allows for the "service road" to pass beneath the ride. The service road is necessary so that trucks, vans and emergency vehicles can access different areas of the park.
Now these are real men! Seriously, the RMC guys are out in 0-degree temperatures all day - kudos to them! I'll be inside, by the fire, with some sweet pink alcoholic beverage (with a little umbrella, of course :) ).
Close up of one of the construction guys. It's a little difficult to see in the pic, but he's outfit in climbing gear.
Brandon **assures** me that the snow will be removed from the tracks before running trains.
You can really see the profile of a lovely hill there. We're are all going to be screaming over that!
The "bents" are mostly constructed on the ground, and then lifted into place to be bolted up to the ride. It's such a manual process, but RMC is really kicking A$$.
It's an odd feeling seeing this ride - it is at the same time a pretty small foot-print, but also an imposing structure .. and it's not even finished yet!
Bulldozers are cool.
When we arrived, this bulldozer was smashing against the (frozen) ground - probably trying to loosen it up a bit. Brandon wasn't sure exactly what is being dug out there, possibly utilities or other mechanical components.
One cannot under-estimate the size of the tunnel .. it's actually more like a cavern. It's huge!
What is probably one of several little work stations for trimming and shaping wood.
Work hasn't progressed too far on the station, but the renderings show how great it will look once complete. Only the framing will be kept from the old station, other than that it's going to get extensively remodeled.
Tromping through the snow!
Marcus Leshock from WGN came by to talk to us .. he was mildly interested in Goliath, but really just wanted to say "hi".... Joking aside, Marcus is a big-time coaster enthusiast, and is also staggeringly excited about this ride. (He's current number 1 is Outlaw Run).
A random salt truck.
Last edited by robbalvey on Wed Jan 22, 2014 1:52 pm.
Wow this ride is looking great! Love the little dip out of the station. Outlaw Run is my #1 coaster so I am looking forward to riding this one this summer. Should dominate the already impressive skyline!
Top Five Steel: 1. Intimidator 305 2. Maverick 3. Bizarro (SFNE) 4. Goliath 5.Phantom's Revenge Top Five Wood: 1. Outlaw Run 2. El Toro 3. Boulder Dash 4. Phoenix 5. Thunderhead
Yet another reason I should go visit my daughter in Chicago later this year; the structure is looking great and love the bents picture!
HeadOn! Apply Directly to when you just don''t feel fresh. Side effects may include drowsiness, explosive belching, cosplay, and death. Use only when directed and when you have an outbreak, have a Coke and a smile!
I don't see any pictures/ angles different than what I took but as soon as my camera thaws out I'll take a look. I would certainly echo what others have said.....The footprint of this ride is very compact but with all the promised elements it should be a very " busy " ride, in a good way.
Just watching the workers, it looks like RMC really has this process down. Seems like a well thought out process of building sections on a platform on the ground and then hoisting and bolting them into place. As an example, this is so much different than what I saw when Boss was being built at SFStL a bunch years ago.
As an older guy ( if you call 57 old) , wood coaster technology seems to be changing as rapidly as everything else. Thinking back to my first carnival ride coaster in the 60's , to bigger coasters with buzz bars, to my first ride on the Beast, to Hades, The Voyage and Outlaw Run, it's been quite the progression. Can't wait to see what Goliath brings us,
Had a great time at the Goliath construction tour today. Thanks to Robb/TPR and Six Flags Great America for making it happen. What an awesome privilege! I got a few shots (other than Goliath) that we don't normally see, so I'm posting them too.
As I was pulling into the employee lot, I could smell fresh cut wood (in my closed and warm car!)
Building a cathedral of bents; these 2 were very close together.
Snow whizzing (as in Whizzer) past.
Former Z-Force and Iron Wolf station. I have a feeling this will be home to Goliath for a long time. The station will be elongated to accomodate the longer trains.
Hinges where track will be fastened. (As a big Anton Schwarzkopf fan... these hinges remind me of Anton's coasters!)
You can keep your coaster nerd card if you like this...
We took a quick shortcut through the maintenance building, twice. The first time, people got pictures of various cool things. The second time, we were asked to move quickly as to not disturb the guys working. I got these pictures the first time through.
Sentimental favorite for me! But black train is the best...
I'm so happy Great America has spent the time and money to take care of many classic rides so we can enjoy them for a long time.
Eagle and deep snow.
There were aerial pictures of the park along the office hallways, seemingly from every year. I figured some folks would like to see this view of Shockwave. Who misses it? I do!
And one of Tidal Wave. Great America had two "wave" coasters before another park had to "streak" coasters. hmmmm.... If you look near the front spike, you can see the Yukon Yahoo - an Anton Bayern Kurve.
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