We went two days in a row, and since we couldn’t do a photo-update of yesterday, we’re doing one right now.
First off, X2 was running 2 trains, without fire, and malfunctioning music, but still great that it’s open again! Additionally they make you pay for lockers now, even if you have just purchased a souvenir bottle, so we highly recommend you to either not buy a souvenir cup, and live off of free water, or buy one after riding X2. We find it ridiculous that the park tries to sell you these around every corner, and thus forces you to pay additionally to store it. Even Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, which makes you use lockers for EVERYTHING, allows cups in the ride station for free. It’s time for SFMM to also install a special cup cabinet in every station (especially X2) that almost all other Six Flags parks have in use. More on X2’s actual operations tomorrow. (Below you’ll see the new chain motor, nice shade of red!)
Let’s move on to Bugs Bunny World! The new entrance is being realized, the carrot club theater is being restored, and Tweety’s Escape is being relocated next to Road Runner!
Additionally, they’re replacing the Canyon Blaster Background, and the tea-cups ride is currently down for maintenance too!
Last but definitely not least, the old Mooseburger Lodge building is being cleared out! We didn’t realize how much available space there actually is, and how great this could look as a sports bar!
PICTURE UPDATE WILL FOLLOW AFTER TOMORROW’S VISIT.
Let’s get to it. As the park opened both X2 and Full Throttle were down, both opened up later. X2 was sadly only running one train, resulting in a 2 hour line. The one train ran incredibly smooth, and the music didn’t even fade. Although there are still problems with the fire effects, we had a lovely ride, worth the very long wait.
We’ve also gotten stuck on Gold Rusher for the first time ever. On top of the second lift the system shut down, and we rolled back a little ’til we came to a complete standstill. We were ultimately greeted by a ride-op, very nice guy, which stayed with us ’til the system was restarted 10 minutes later.
Goliath has a bunch of new brakes stored under the storage tracks, not sure when these will be installed.
Riddler’s Revenge’s Station has finally received a small make-over! The ‘question-mark’ lasers have returned! All are working properly again!
Lots more is currently going on at the mountain, such as the BBW transformation. A photo-update will follow tomorrow, after we have visited the park again!
Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem sounds like it will be CA’s best new simulator-ride, and perhaps the most interesting family ride! Our partners at USHFans have made a more recent visit, thus the photo credits go to them.
The brand new ride is to open in April, and as we look at it right now, they seem to be well on their way. The following will likely be a part of the waiting line, it looks very similar to the line at Universal Studios Orlando. The detail of this project is amazing, look at the houses below, and how the cut-out 2D trees look with the blue background that’s actually a building. Very impressive. Another picture showing the great details that will go into the ride’s look! Take a closer look at the 2D cut-out of the tree!
We, will keep you posted on the progress Minion Mayhem makes! So check in with us regularly! Also, check out our Minion Mayhem post giving more details of the ride itself here.
California Coaster Kings went to Six Flags Magic Mountain today. It wasn’t too crowded, if crowded at all, but lots of things were going on. Let’s take a look.
First off, one of Sky Tower’s windows was ‘open’, or broken. And the ride will not reopen ’til March 22nd. All entrance and exit paths are blocked.
Scrambler has been dismantled, and all parts are located next to Apocalypse on the storage lot. Hopefully the ride will get some sort of re-paint, it’s very faded currently.
Swashbuckler has also been dismantled for maintenance, the ride’s parts are stored partially next to ride and at the storage lot between HH and FT. Additionally, does any one know why these trees, next to Swashbuckler have been marked, will they be removed? On another positive note, Scream!, which was only running one train today, finally has it’s station music back! We loved the techno music and the auto-announcements. The volume was turned up just right, and waiting to ride has never been this good before.When looking at the Kiddie area expansion, Six Flags Magic Mountain is well on its way. Foghorn’s Railway has been removed, and is stored behind the carrot club theater. Tweety’s Escape is too, the new location for TE will be next to Road Runner Express, the site seems to be ready for the move of the ride. The cleared site will be home to the new kiddie coaster! Just as there wasn’t a line, Lex Luthor broke down, and didn’t reopen for the day. Which we found sad as we were the only ones left waiting at a point. On the more positive note, we did get to see maintenance use the awesome orange remote control. There is once again some activity going on at the old Thrill Shot site, hopefully we’ll soon see some sort of ride being placed there.
Additionally, Ninja is back to 2 train operations, with new wheels and harnesses, trains 1 and 3 have never rolled this smooth before. Another great thing is Batman. Batman was running one train today, with the other train not being in storage, we have a very strong feeling that the other train is being prepared to run backwards. Since we saw special parts for Batman Backwards located on the storage track between Riddler’s Revenge and Batman The Ride, and exactly half seemed to be unwrapped and gone already, Batman Backwards shouldn’t be too far away! X2 is doing good too, all the chain links are no longer stored on the site, and seem to have been installed, maintenance was working on X2 again today, so we hope for it to reopen soon!
That’s about it for today, as you’ve seen lots has happened. Please comment any thoughts, or additional information below!! Thank you!
The Mooseburger Lodge will likely turn into a Full Throttle themed sports bar! Several people have been told this. The restaurant is currently under construction, and will reopen , perhaps re-themed as a sports bar in either March or April. The park seems to be taking a distance from the previous ‘High Sierra Territory’ theme, and it wouldn’t surprise us if the park will soon transform the entire area into some sort of theme that will bring more attention to both Full Throttle and Bugs Bunny World.
It seems that this one tree, will not be part of the new sports bar, and will be scrapped.
The park made nice signs that they’d put on the doors of the restaurant. Showing all guests that it will not reopen ’til the renovations have been finished.
Tsunami Soaker construction has started at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom! For a description of the ride and more info first, click here.
Below you’ll see some pictures of the construction site. Nothing majorly important has happened yet. So far, the old Wave Jumper ride that used to be in the spot across from Roar has been dismantled and is being stored next to Superman Ultimate Flight. Continue reading “Tsunami Soaker Construction Update”
The first day of 2014 was a perfect day to visit Discovery Kingdom. The park was literally empty! We were the first guests of 2014, and had a great time. Let’s see what was going on at SFDK.
We arrived at the park, and we’re surprised to be one of the very first guests, and this only 40 minutes before park opening, eventually when the gates opened, we were the first guests to enter, and with our Gold passes we were also the first to enter the Oasis Plaza with the early entrance. We decided to ride Sky Screamer first since Medusa was still closed, and Kong hadn’t even start testing yet. Continue reading “Six Flags Discovery Kingdom Trip Report 1-1-14”
It’s the end of 2013, and we thought that it’d be great to look back at the 2013 Season, and take a look at what 2014 will bring.
2013 was the year in which California’s Great America came back on the map with an amazing record breaking GCI woodie. The Gold Striker is a hit with the public, and after some years in which CGA didn’t receive much love, seems to be the beginning of a brighter future for this Santa Clara park.
2013 was also the year in which Six Flags Magic Mountain named itself the Thrill Capital of the World, with the addition of world’s tallest and fastest looping coaster. Full Throttle might be a bit short, but it definitely lived up to our, and many other’s, expectations. The record breaker opened a little later than expected, but it opened with a newly themed area which brings back life to the area. We love the LEDs and lasers used in the new area! The area luckily brought room for expansion, and improvement, the park could basically add anything to it!
2013 also brought us Coast Rider, this fun new family coaster is part of an expansion with family rides, brightening up the Boardwalk section of the park. The family expansion was great for Knott’s! We find it interesting to see a Wild Mouse being placed, but it’s actually really fun, and is a perfect family ride!
2013 overall, was a great year for the Californian theme parks. The parks are off to a great future, and all major parks have received great new additions in the last couple of years. Six Flags Discovery Kingdom had some great in-house improvements, as they remodeled their 2 dolphin stadiums. Thus they had 2 brand new Dolphin Shows, Drench! at the new Toyota Stadium. And Cirque Dreams Splashtastic, which was a huge hit with the public! Knott’s reopened their log ride. Timber Mountain Log Ride has become even more spectacular, and we love the revisions done to the ride.
2013 was also the year of the New Texas Giant accident, which caused the Six Flags seat belt hype. Goliath, Superman Ultimate Flight and Full Throttle are now using seat belts. 2013 was also the year in which we noticed how badly some of our favorite CA coasters need repaints. Tatsu, Ninja, Riddler’s Revenge, Scream!, Goliath, and Viper all need repaints, so do Silver Bullet and Sierra Sidewinder. Hopefully California’s Great America keeps up the hard work, and will finish repainting all rides in 2014. It would also be nice to see the back side of CGA get some sort of make-over this off season, so it’s ready to go in 2014!And then there is the 2014 Season, bound to be another great one for our CA parks. Although all big new rides for 2014 are outside of CA, the most appropriate expansions will still be made for our CA parks. We’re happy to announce that Silver Bullet will receive a paintjob next week! And we’ve also been told that Scream! and Tatsu will receive paintjobs for the 2014 Season.
2014 will bring us a make-over of the Calico Mine Ride at Knott’s. As well as an expansion of Knott’s Camp Snoopy kiddie area. Which brings us to Magic Mountain, which will also expand their kiddie area. Bugs Bunny World will receive a brand new Zamperla Gravity coaster for 2014 with the expansion and rejuvenation of the kiddie area. Six Flags Magic Mountain will also run Batman the Ride and Colossus backwards for a limited time in the spring of 2014.
2014 will also bring us Tsunami Soaker at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom as well as the return of Cirque Dreams Splashtastic, which is a wonderful show that you can’t miss out on! Additionally Six Flags Discovery Kingdom will finally be open year round, as 2014 is their first year of weekly operations! Last but not least is the reopening op Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Disneyland, the entire track will be renewed, and we can’t wait for this great coaster to reopen, while totally upgraded!
We wish you the happiest year so far, and enjoy all 2013, and 2014, additions this upcoming season! The CA theme parks are in great shape and bound to give visitors a blast!
California Coaster Kings went to Universal Studios Hollywood on the 20th of December, although we went mainly for Grinchmas, we were there for an entire day, thus we created a little overlook of our day. Ride Reviews and recaps will follow soon.
We arrived when the park opened, and the first thing we went on is the popular Studio Tour. Luckily there was no line, and we were on the first tram/bus to leave. A review will follow. Next up, we decided to visit the lower lot, since it wasn’t crowded yet. We rode ‘Revenge of the Mummy’ first. There were no lines, so that was good. We rode it twice in a row. It’s a fun ride, a little short, but very smooth with a nice launch. It’s definitely a ‘must-do’ when at the park. A review of this ride will follow.
Next up, Jurassic Park. Luckily we didn’t get wet on it. The ride has very well been put together, we ended up riding it 3 times. A review of this ride will follow.The last ride on the lower lot was the all new Transformers: The Ride 3D. Which was amazing! Definitely one of our favorite rides, good story line and pretty long line. Fast movements make the ride even better.
It was interesting to see the interaction between ride-related characters and guests, such as characters from ‘Transformers’ and ‘Revenge of the Mummy’.
We then returned to the upper lot, where we rode all other rides and went to see Waterworld and the Special Effects Stage. Waterworld was very good. It was interesting to see the show both at night and during the day.
Shrek 4D was awesome, and hardly had any lines all day. Simpsons on the other hand had about the longest line with Transformers all day, except for the 70 min Studio Tours line. We ended up riding all rides at least twice.
The main reason we came to the park was of course Grinchmas, which we totally loved. The park was beautifully decorated, and the tree lighting ceremony was a hit! Click here to read the Grinchmas Report!
California Coaster Kings went to Universal Studios Hollywood on the 20th of December to cover Grinchmas! Short reports of our trip outside of the Grinhmas event will follow soon, with full coverage of all the rides, some of the shows, and of course Studio Tour! So stay tuned!
The park’s entrance and streets are wonderfully decorated!
Universal Plaza was dedicated to offer everyone a variety of Grinchmas activities. Guests could decorate cookies, design tree ornaments, take pictures with the Grinch and his dog ‘Max’. As well as observe the tree, and all Who-Ville friends!
The tree looked wonderful, and from 5-8PM, there was a tree lighting ceremony every 30 minutes, with music, artificial snow and performances of the characters walking around the plaza! There were also several performances around the park at night, related to the holiday season!
Watch our video below of the plaza at night, the ceremony, the other live entertainment, and the artificial snow! Combined creating an awesome holiday event for young and old!
Just like everyone else, we had to go see the new structure ourselves… Let’s leave our opinion out of this, here are some pictures and descriptions!
The new permanent station roof has been installed. The park seems to have attempted to block the sun, although the structure is pretty much back-wards, and thus there is still sun shining on the operators, into the station.
It’s quite a simple structure, and we think that the park could have done better, we were honestly expecting a canopy similar to the line-canopy. Since this was shown on the concept art.
It doesn’t cover the exit ramp, and thus the ride-op on that side will still have to deal with the sun. As you might see in the pic below, is that it is weirdly angled. The front left of the station is elevated the highest, the back right the lowest. This is done for the drainage of the rainwater, when it rains. It might also be a strategic way of blocking the sun, although the sun shines in from the other side most of the day, and there are trees located on the lower side of the roof.
Hopefully they aren’t quite done yet! We hope to see some LEDs and perhaps walls in the station to create a station that will, perhaps, be entirely inside. Although it doesn’t seem like this station will live up to the SUF station at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom.
As often as we go, there is always something new that we notice! It never stops! So here’s today’s update (12/8/13)
As we were waiting to enter this morning, we noticed Bugs and Coyote in their fancy Holiday out-fits! Our guess is that the unofficial ‘Holiday in the Park’ has now started, as Santa Claus and his wife were there all day, and the snow-globe was finally opened to the public. We don’t have a picture, but the park also installed snowflake-lights in the trees that shine down on the paths. It is pretty need looking.
Let’s move on to the talk most people have wanted to hear. Full Throttle is roof-less. Yes, it always was, but the station has no cover any longer. Construction of the actual station roof is starting soon. This is a great sign of it! Full Throttle was operating 2 trains after a humble 2 weeks in which it wasn’t always operating.
Although Jet Stream has stayed open during the winter for the last couple of years, it was drained, and seemed closed for the season. We saw a spot along the flume track that you could just see the sun shine through. Either they give it a big refurb soon, or get rid of it, because this is seriously sad! Does any one have a clue why the Log Jammer logs are still on site?
When we rode Apocalypse, we were surprised that the fire was working again! We were also surprised to see that the park did some sort of ‘re-tracking’, at least they added some wood to the structure, as well as the track, that has a totally different color.
As we walked through Bugs Bunny World, which we don’t do too often, we noticed that there was some sort of construction going on next to Roadrunner Express and Magic Flyer. Also, we’re not sure if it’s new or not, but the weather sign seemed new.
Last but not least, we saw that the pads under the Lex Corp suit in the Lex Luthor Drop of Doom line were replaced. It looks new, and unbroken! YAY! Also Viper was closed for a while around noon-1PM for no apparent reason. They were cycling empty trains for a while and then let us in. Oh well.
Other than that, Sky Tower is still closed, hope for it to re-open soon. There was hardly anyone in the park all day, so lines were minimal. Colossus and Gold Rusher are said to be receiving seat-belts, but they don’t have them yet.
It has become very clear that Six Flags Magic Mountain is lacking creative, or good, lighting at night. The ‘Thrill Capital of the World’ has huge structures, that can be seen from the entire valley, and from the mountains through which the Interstate-5 winds. Yet, almost-free advertisement at night is not their thing.
Six Flags Magic Mountain has super rides that tower over the park such as Superman Escape From Krypton, Tatsu, Goliath, Viper, X2, etc. As well as rides that are very visible from the freeway although they don’t tower over the park; Colossus, Scream!, Riddler’s Revenge, etc. Now why in the world are these rides not lit up at night?
All you see is the lift-hill lights, that are often defunct. The Superman structure could receive a nice package of LED’s and the park could program the tower to change lights at night. The park could even go creative and have the changing tower lights correspond with the drop-sequence of Lex Luthor! This is just one example! (Pic below is an example of how it could look)
Scream! and Colossus are both located right next to the parking lot. Now, wouldn’t it be great to have a 150 ft tall super coaster (Scream!) that towers over you as you leave change colors? It doesn’t even have to be the entire ride, perhaps the interlocking corkscrews that stick out into the parking lot! Or the super-white structure of the classic woodie, that stretches out along almost the entire parking lot. That’s the easiest structure to light up! Yes, the park has tried it before, changing colors, but this was done by a system of which the color filters burnt through, so all you see is the white structure. Why don’t the try to project patterns on the white track at night? Or just simple LEDs to light up the structure, and have it change colors at, perhaps, a fast or slow, peaceful pace?
Say we look at Tatsu and Goliath, both are very noticeable from almost anywhere in the park. Next to the fact that they need a desperate repaint, both structures look dominant, and lighting, other than white lights shining at them, could make them standout from anywhere in the park, and outside the park. This could be easily done by adding LEDs to the bigger support structures of Goliath, and the simple attachment of LED strips to the Tatsu supports, perhaps not even the supports for both, but the track! (Pic below is an example of how it could look)
When we talk about Riddler’s Revenge’s lights, we talk about the lasers in the station. Remember the time of the good music and ‘question-mark-lasers’ all over the station? Combined with the lift-hill lights that used to all work? Yes, those were the times! Only thing they have to do to change it is to simply turn up the volume, and replace some light bulbs, isn’t too much work is it?
Lastly, rides like Goldrusher, Ninja, Revolution, and Full Throttle are fine the way they are, the first three are built in a forest, and Full Throttle has the equipment to light up the loop in different colors at night. Apocalypse is fine the way it is too since it adds to the ride’s initial theme. Viper on the other hand has a white support structure, it’s built on one of the highest parts of the park, and can be seen from everywhere! (Not always in the park, but outside the park) So wouldn’t it be great if SFMM went back to previous times, and were to light it up in different colors? Same counts for X2, and since it’s such a popular ride, and its location and structure… let you’re fantasy do the rest…
These 2 pics show what Magic Mountain looks like at night now-a-days, could be changed right?
Rides could be cheaply, easily, be made prettier, only if the parks, in this case Six Flags Magic Mountain, were to install LEDS, or any form of creative light package. We used SFMM as an example since they have the rides to show off, and are currently using mediocre lighting. Nothing against the park’s rides, but this is something they could improve on. We do factor in the local restrictions and such, and maybe that could apply to the superman structure, although that’s lit up at night now too. But when it comes to most other rides, like Viper, X2, Colossus, Scream! And Goliath. They are lit up at night at this point, but use bad lights, that don’t make the rides stand out whatsoever. LEDs could easily change that!
Comment below what you’re thoughts are when it comes to this topic, as well as which other parks are in need of new lighting. Or share your fantasies, or ideas of how parks could make their rides look better at night.
Here we are! Part 2 of our Knott’s report! We will show some cool night pictures, and everything else we couldn’t discuss in the previous report. Also, on the bottom of this post we have great news regarding the Calico Mine Ride!
Let’s get started with our walk-through of the back of the park. The old Roarin’ 20’s was the second area in the history of the park. It houses bumper-cars, a 2 theaters for the shows, and seasonal events, as well as shops and Hollywood-related apparel. Below you’ll see the stadium in which Snoopy on Ice will start tomorrow! (November 28th) as part of Knott’s Merry Farm!
The basis of the park is of course Ghost Town. Ghost Town is the original and the best, it sets the tone of the park. And is our favorite area in the park. Yes it might have very minimal rides, but lots of shops, small museums, remodeled Calico buildings, good food, and lots more. A MUST VISIT when at Knott’s! It houses Mystery Lodge, an anamatronics show about Indians.
Here’s the bumper-cars we talked about earlier!
The Rio Grande Western and Southern trains have been bought by Knott’s, and were refurbished to run on a rail-road in the park, and this is one of those rides that makes a visit to Knott’s complete! Riders will get a great view of the park as the train travels through the park. Additionally there are actors in the train that will interact with the guests on the train.
TIPS:Visit the back of the park, or of course Ghost Town, when lines seem to get long, and you want to get something to eat or relax. Say you just ate, ride the train, visit Ghost Town, and relax. When ever you are even slightly tired of the rides, go to Ghost Town, since there is a lot to do, it’s educational and very interesting and calm. Great that Cedar Fair kept this in tact!
Sierra Sidewinder and Silver Bullet
Sierra Sidewinder is a great family ride, and is one of our favorites, but due to extreme lines on the day we went, we decided not to ride it. Sierra Sidewinder was only operating 1 train, with a line extending all the way into Camp Snoopy! Check out a full review of Sierra Sidewinder, from our visit when they ran 2 trains.
Next up, the star ride of the park! Silver Bullet is, arguably, the best ride in the park! Luckily they were back to 2 train operations when we were there last week! It ran incredibly smooth, and we are, as always, in love with the combination of elements! Simply a great long ride!
Just like GhostRider and Xcelerator, Silver Bullet has TV Screens in the station with safety videos!
Pony Express and the Water Rides
Let’s start of with our good ol’ Pony. Yeah, we weren’t satisfied whatsoever this time. The time before, we went with minimal crowds, and a 10-15 minutes wait for 1 train operations was okay. But it was a Saturday, and we waited 40-45 minutes this time for a 30 seconds ride… Great ride, but the line ruined it! Just being honest here. Read about the entire ride experience and everything else in our ride review. (Which is a lot more positive)
Let’s talk… Big Foot Rapids! NO LINES ALL DAY! YAY! This is a fun raft ride, you don’t get super soaked, like on MM’s Roaring Rapids, but you definitely are able to get wet! It’s actually pretty long, and is a fun ride, even when it’s cold! Each boat has a pouch in the middle that is water-proof, in which you can put and protect your articles.
Perhaps the best news in this report yet, Timber Mountain Log Ride is seriously the best themed ride in the park now, and we even choose it over Splash Mountain! The make-over it under went did the ride so extremely well, we can’t even describe! A bunch of new scenes have been added, a new light package, sensory effects, etc. The ride looks extremely nice from both outside and inside. We strongly advise you to ride it next time you’re at Knott’s!
This relates to the great news that Garner Holt productions will also do a make-over of Calico Mine Ride, after the success with TMLR! Take a look.
Knott’s at Night!
We took some pictures of the park at night. Some parts of the park, especially the New Boardwalk, and the Timber Mountain Log Ride look great at night! So does GhostRider of course!
This was the Knott’s overall report! More detailed articles to come soon! Go to our Knott’s overall report part 1 by clicking here!
Comment your thoughts of the park and anything else coaster related you feel like sharing!