Short Fright Fest Update from 10/11/13

CCK was at Fright Fest (SFMM) again yesterday, and although there wasn’t much going on compared to last week, there were a few things we noticed!

 One of ’em was that Colossus Backwards was closed all night… 20131011_184537

Six Flags Magic Mountain put up some signs with directions for the mazes. They were located at various places in the park, and looked very neat.


This weekend, they seriously fogged out the scare zones, and we could finally see the ‘City Under Siege’ effects! (there was hardly any fog last Friday)


Scream! finally received a new ‘shield’ on the fence (exit path). It used to be ripped, and looked awful. Next up; PAINT JOB!


SFMM also added a TV screen in the Total Darkness line, guests in line can now follow groups inside the pitch-black maze. Nice addition!



Other than this, Viper ran extremely smooth yesterday. Also, Batman: The Ride was closed all night too, and there were no lines for the rides, except for SEFK, which had a line reaching far outside the building.

Special Saturday–Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

Although the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is considered a nostalgic park, being open since 1907, the park contains more thrills than many are lead to believe.  The park contains 33 rides and has a 34th on the way.  Along with its classics such as their carrousel or Ferris wheel, the park contains 6 rides classified by the park as thrilling.  The following is a list of these considered thrilling rides, as well as a description of their new coaster, Undertow. Continue reading “Special Saturday–Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk”

Throwback Thursday–Mountain Express

me1Mountain Express at Six Flags Magic Mountain was a Schwarzkopf Wildcat model that operated in the park from 1973 to 1983.  It was the parks 3rd roller coaster, and the first that the park built after it’s opening (Gold Rusher and Clown Coaster opened within the 1st year of the park’s existence).  It was located around the area where the coaster Goliath is located today in Pirates Cove.  The ride was quite a compact ride, reaching a maximum height of 50 ft and a maximum speed of 40 MPH. me2

After its 10 year run at Magic Mountain, the ride was renamed Wildcat and moved to Magic Landing in El Paso, Texas, where it operated until 1990, before moving to its final home, Bosque Magico in Mexico, and was run as Montana Russa, until its demolition in 2006. The ride became more popular at its 2nd and 3rd homes, due to the fact that it was the only coaster at Magic Landing, and 1 of only 2 coasters at Bosque Magico. The Schwarzkopf Wildcat 65 meter model is very rare to see today, with only 3 of them still running (Achterbahn at Skyline Park in Germany, Wildcat at the Washington State Fair, and Wildcat at the North Georgia State Fair).  The trains are similar to wild mouse cars, featuring only one car that seats 2 rows of 2.  The track contains a lift hill, that dips at the top before turning and dropping and then repeating the turn and drop 2 times on each side.

Achterbahn at Skyline Park (the same model as Mountain Express)
Achterbahn at Skyline Park (the same model as Mountain Express)

Disneyland Changes Handicapped Pass Rules

For many years, Disneyland and other Disney parks around the world have offered Handicapped Passes for people who have physical impairments or injuries, which allows them and their group to skip the strenuous walking of the line, and go right to the handicapped loading areas.

A handicapped pass from Walt Disney World
A handicapped pass from Walt Disney World

Continue reading “Disneyland Changes Handicapped Pass Rules”

Vortex @ California’s Great America

In this Ride Review, we’re taking a look at the 2nd B&M ever made. VORTEX at California’s Great America that is. 


Vortex is located behind the big carousel, and is hard to miss since it is the only roller coaster before heading past the food locations to the back and middle of the park. Riders will approach the line where a wooden sign indicates that they’re about to board Vortex. The lines is simply all switchbacks that seriously never fill up. Riders will then approach the stairs that lead to the station. The station is out door, and there will be a canopy for the operator that will assign you a row. Continue reading “Vortex @ California’s Great America”

2013 Six Flags Magic Mountain Maze Review!

California Coaster Kings went on all mazes this Fright Fest! Thus we’re doing a review on all of ’em! *(SCARE LEVEL provided by park) Read our Fright Fest update by clicking here.

  • Weepy Hills INSANEtorium – 8/10 – INSANEtorium was an interesting new maze. It replaced Slaughter House and was nicely set up. It just felt like it missed some major aspects, which we hope will be there next year. The entrance is nice, and it all makes perfect sense regarding the theme. The only things that should change are the amount of rooms/ character interactions, and the end. In the end visitors used to flee for the chainsaw, now there’s nothing, and you just walk around the building to get back to DC Universe
  • Toyz of Terror – 10/10 – Toyz of Terror is our favorite new maze! It starts off at the point where Jokester’s Hide Out used to start, but the entire maze has been transformed into a toy factory. The props are very nicely done, as well as the repaint it under went. Some fan-favorite aspects from the ‘clown’ styled maze have returned, such as the long hallway full of doors, where the toys pop-out, and the spinning tunnel. DEFINITELY A MUST-DO!
  • Total Darkness – 9/10 – After the HUGE ‘Blackout’ maze success last year, Six Flags in general stepped up their game, and installed a ‘Total Darkness’ maze in almost all of its parks. Magic Mountain received a Theater themed one, where visitors enter the Magic Moments Theater to go through the pitch-black maze. This year, the lines moved fast, as there were 2 sides that were used. Your group would be assigned either side, where strobe lights would disorientate visitors before they had to enter the ‘Total Darkness’ while having only a rope to hold on to, and navigate through the maze! 
  • Willoughby’s Resurrected – 9/10 – Willoughby’s used to be a 10/10, and we’re not sure why they changed that, since we thought it was scarier than Aftermath. Anyways, Willoughby’s is a maze where you are seriously terrified from the beginning on! As you enter the Maze, the first thing you do, is the scariest. There’s some loud noise as a dead carcass gets hit against a wall, there is a bright flash of a picture that’s being taken, and there is an air-pressured fog machine blowing against your leg. This all happens at the same time, before you enter the actual maze. The actual maze has been done pretty well, with the recreation of this old mansion, with the moving paintings, bloody bathroom, and screaming children.
  • The Aftermath – 10/10 -A 3 year veteran and a favorite of ours here at CCK.  It is loosely based off of the TV show the Walking Dead, and is located on the theater in the movie district that used to house the Batman stunt show, and featuring many of those effects, including overturned automobiles, a model helicopter that hovers around the maze, and even a car that has flames that burst up between 10-20ft tall out of its front hood.  And let’s not forget lots of disorienting fog!
  • Black Widow – 7/10 -The story takes participants through the basement of an old apartment building, overun with deadly spiders, and the spiders’ victims trapped in its webs.  The maze is located on top of Samurai Summit in an area between Ninja and Superman: Escape from Krypton, and right in the middle of the Exile Hill scare zone.
  • Chupacabra – 6/10 -The classic story of the sheep killing Mexican killing beast with a new twist of its craving for human blood.  The maze is a serious park veteran and is located on Baja Ridge, with its entrance located between Viper and X2’s entrances, and goes through the old Revolution line.
  • Cursed – 6/10 -Another park veteran that goes through the Tidal Wave line, and features Gypsy’s who have become werewolves, and, although, not the longest or best mazes, definitely does one of the best transformations.

First Night of Fright Fest 2013 at Six Flags Magic Mountain.

California Coaster Kings went to the first night of 2013 Fright Fest, and here’s a little update! Click here for reviews of all 2013 mazes!


Demon’s Door was ready to go when we entered!


Demon’s Door was an amazing Scare Zone, that really put guests right into the action. The flames that came out of the Valencia Falls were pretty amazing too! (click here to watch our FF video with shots of the fire flames)


Lex Luthor was closed all night due to the high winds.


Total Darkness was totally different from Blackout, and was a whole lot better. Also, lines were held short this year because of the large maze that was split into 2 sides.

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Look at those street-lights!


Zombie crossing was very neat too! They had a tv reporting the news as you approached. They also had a road sign saying; ‘Warning… Zombie Crossing Ahead’, which was very nice. (To see the sign in action watch our video by clicking here)


The Wastelands Scare Zone over at Aftermath.


Gypsy Hollow Scare Zone over at Cursed.


Willoughby’s didn’t have a line, and they took photo’s again this year.


Black Widow didn’t have a line at all because of the light crowds, so we got to go in immediately. It was very good this year. We had our doubts last year, but it was definitely a must do, since it never has lines.

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City Under Siege was back this year!


The Aftermath, like each year, was amazing again, with the flame throwers, the extremely thick fog. One of the best mazes Fright Fest has ever seen. (See our maze review by clicking here!)


The Hypnotist show was back for this Fright Fest. It took kind of long, and wasn’t worth the time. So unless you will visit Fright Fest weekly, do all mazes and scare zones first!

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Fright Feast with the Willoughby’s returned, due to the crowds, there was almost no one there.


Voodoo Nights, performances by Cursed (the band that is named ‘Velocity’ during Full Throttle Nights)

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The flames shooting out of the fountain over at Demon’s Door were controlled from behind the Cyber Cafe.


The nightmare Scare Zone was really good once again!


Chupacabra isn’t our favorite maze, but since there were hardly any lines it was okay.


We didn’t get any good pictures of Toyz of Terror, but that was probably our favorite NEW Maze! They left in the best aspects of the previous Jokster’s Hide Out, and transformed the maze to become some toy factory! (Read full maze review by clicking here!)


Disney Wednesday–Pirates of the Caribbean

For this Ride Review, we’re looking at the fan-favorite, Pirates of the Caribbean!

Pirates of the Caribbean was the final ride in Disneyland that Walt Disney worked on himself (although it opened 3 months after he died), and boy has it been a success.  Since it opened in 1967, 3 adaptations of the ride have been opened at other Disney parks around the world, 4 full motion picture films with a 5th in production, and it has created millions of smiles throughout the years.  The ride was originally designed to be a walk through wax museum of pirates but the idea adapted into a dark boat ride as animitronic technology evolved.  The ride is housed in an 1850’s style french quarter New Orleans building which houses the above ground part of the ride and the restaurant Blue Bayou on the first floor, and one of the Walt Disney Dream Suite on the 2nd floor. pirates Continue reading “Disney Wednesday–Pirates of the Caribbean”

NEW Knott’s Berry Farm’s Haunt Mazes!


Knott’s Halloween Haunt (Knott’s Scary Farm) has been one of the top Halloween destinations for many years and it keeps adding new and exciting mazes and scare zones every year to keep up with the competition! Here are the new mazes/attractions for the 2013 Haunt that started last Thursday, the 26th of September, and will run through the 2nd of November. Continue reading “NEW Knott’s Berry Farm’s Haunt Mazes!”

Tommorow Tuesday–Magic Mountain Kiddie Coaster

Although, there are no speculations on what the new kiddie coaster at Magic Mountain will be, we thought that it might be helpful to remind our followers of all the kiddie coaster models that are at six flags parks around America, Canada, and Mexico.  We’d like to hear your feed back of which you would like to see.

Vekoma Junior Coaster: A family coaster built by the Dutch company Vekoma, which has junior coasters ranging from 85m to 335m that feature either an oval or triple turn track.  The coasters feature a top speed of 28.5 mph.  Vekoma junior coasters can be seen at Six Flags Fiesta Texas (Kiddee Koaster), Magic Mountain (Road Runner Express), Six Flags Mexico (Roller), and Six Flags Great America (Spacely’s Sprocket Rockets)



E&F Miller Family Coaster: A family coaster built by the American coaster company E&F Miller, based out of Portland.  The coasters feature tracks ranging from 11.5 to 20 ft long and feature helices or spirals.  E&F family coasters can be seen at Six Flags New England (Great Chase) and Magic Mountain (Canyon Blaster)

Six Flags New England's Roller Coasters

Zierer Tivoli: A family coaster made by the German company Zierer that features 4 sizes.  Zierer Tivoli models are featured at Six Flags Great Adventure (Blackbeard’s Treasure Train), Fiesta Texas (Boardwalk Canyon Blaster), Discovery Kingdom (Cobra), and Six Flags Mexico (Tsunami)



Zamperla Family Gravity Coaster: Zamperla family gravity coasters are family coasters built by the Italian Company Zamperla.  Gravity coasters can be found at Six Flags America (Great Chase), Great Escape (Frankie’s Mine Train), Discovery Kingdom (Roadrunner Express), and Great Adventure (Road Runner Railway)



Chance Big Dipper: The Big Dipper is a family coaster produced by Chance, company based in Kansas.  The Big Dipper is featured at Six Flags Over Texas (Grand Canyon Blaster) and Over Georgia (Canyon Blaster)

Roller coaster photography by



Boomerang Coast to Coaster @ Six Flags Discovery Kingdom

We’re looking at the most sold roller coaster model ever! Yes, it’s a Vekoma Boomerang. Although there are 2 Vekoma Boomerang models in CA, we’ll be taking a look at the ‘newest’ one that opened in ’98, at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom.


We realize that Boomerangs are not the fan favorites in a state that has some of the best coasters on the planet. This though, does not take away the love we have for boomerangs. Boomerang Coast to Coaster, just like any other standard Boomerang, has a track length of 935 ft, over which it will travel both forwards and backwards. It has 3 inversions that terrify riders by turning them upside down 6 times!


When riders have approached the backside of the park, close to the zoo section of the park, they’ll find a coaster scattered somewhere far away from all other coasters. Boomerang Coast to Coaster that is, even though the sign only says Boomerang, it is indeed Coast to Coaster :D. Riders will enter the line that is located in the middle of the track’s triangular layout. Once the riders moved through the line, they will be hold over at the stairs leading to the station, where a Flash Pass employee or Ride-Op will assign rows, or let small people enter the station. The train returns, the gates open and there you go, you are about to experience a ride that literally spins you around, forwards, backwards,  and upside down.

It's located away from the busy plazas and is actually residing on a hill with trees surrounding it.
It’s located away from the busy plazas and is actually residing on a hill with trees surrounding it.

Once the operators have done their quadruple visual scan, the train will leave the station going up a 116.5 ft hill, backwards. The catch-car will take you to the top, and then drop the train. Once the train is released it will dive down to the station with a speed of 47 MPH, it will the put 5.2 Gs on your body before shooting over the midway into a nice Cobra-Roll. Make sure to keep your head back in the Cobra-Roll, because it might be a bit shaky, but there is no stopping yet! The train will then fly into a disorienting looping, before flying up the second hill. It will be caught by a chain-lift to reach the 116.5 ft once again. Without warning, the train will drop backwards to deliver an amazing second half of the ride! The train will fly through the loop again, BACKWARDS, yes we here at CCK love ‘Backwards’. The loop is probably the best element backwards, next to the drop. After spiraling through the loop again, riders will experience some funky ‘air-time’, as they shoot through the Cobra-Roll again, but backwards. An amazing feeling you will get from going through the Cobra-Roll backwards is that you will have that little feeling of ‘hang-time’, and ‘air-time’ right before you drop back to the station. The train will be slowed down and ultimately placed back in position for the next riders to experience the many elements in the short 1 minute and 48 seconds.

That Cobra-Roll while going backwards!
That Cobra-Roll while going backwards!

Boomerang Coast to Coaster is located between 3 big stadiums and the zoo-area of the park. It’s across from the Alligator Isle, and the Ark (Swinging ship). The lines for Boomerang C to C tend to be pretty short throughout the day. There is practically no line ’til around noon, or 1 PM, because of it’s location in the park. It will have a short wait to about 20 minutes for the remainder of the day, and crowds won’t lessen towards the end of the day, because the zoo-area closes earlier, and thus Boomerang is often the only thing operating (and some flat-rides). On busy days the line can get long, to about an hour if it’s really crowded, but this is not usually the case. Boomerang C to C is often closed during the winter operations together with Voodoo and Tazmanian Devil. Therefore, spend time riding all the other rides first in the winter, but give Boomerang a shot first in the summer, since it will have a line later on during the day, and the other rides won’t have such long lines later on the day!

It's located along the path between 3 big stadiums.
It’s located along the path between 3 big stadiums.

It is and will always be a Vekoma Boomerang, we love ’em, but some others don’t so just keep in mind; keep your head back, relax and yes, it might be a bit jerky. But, it’s definitely worth riding without lines. You gotta agree, backwards and forwards and 6 (3) inversions… still pretty great!

Boomerang Coast to Coaster is surrounded by flat-rides rather than roller coasters!