On Sunday, I had the chance to attend East Coast Bash with the ThemeParkReview crew – and it was amazing. We had almost an hour of ERT on Dominator, then Grizzly, in the morning; we were first in line for Intimidator305 at the beginning of the day; we got a walkback tour of I305; and got nearly two hours of ERT on I305, overlapping an hour on Volcano and Flight of Fear (lights on). I’ve never had such a great time at a theme park, and thanks have to be given to Robb and Elissa of TPR, John and Ed of the KD Management, Rose and Stephanie of the KD Events team, and the ride crews for Dominator, Grizzly, Volcano, FoF, and I305. Thanks y’all! …Now for pictures!
So we started off the day with 45 minutes of ERT on Dominator – a fantastic floorless coaster with what I believe is the tallest vertical loop in the world (hence the yellow)!
Dominator has one of the most unique layouts for a B&M, thanks to the footprint it was built in at Geauga Lake. It’s living proof that B&M can do something different!
After 45 minutes of ERT on Grizzly (which is impossible to photograph), the park walked our group of 150 back to Intimidator to be the first riders of the day!
Once the rain (see the clouds in those pictures up there?) cleared up, we were able to grab a front-seat ride with only a 15 minute wait.
GENTLEMEN: START. YOUR. ENGINES!! …Intimidator is, without a doubt, a top-five coaster worldwide. Get those trims off, and it’s even better.
Right next door to Intimidator is Flight of Fear, the original LIM launch! Kings Dominion has actually always been a pioneer in launch technology – something which management told us has always plagued them with plenty of technical problems.
Fun-Fact from the walkback tour: Anaconda’s lift hill sits on a concrete slab that’s actually left over from King Kobra, the Scwarzkopf shuttle that used to sit on Lake Charles!
Management filled us in on a little secret, too – making roller coasters fit is just a big jigsaw puzzle. They actually use coins, each of which represent an acreage, on a map to find a suitable place for a new ride! Hence the Congo containing Volcano, Avalanche, Backlot Stunt Coaster, Anaconda, Flight of Fear, and Intimidator 305.
These Intamin Gyro-Drops are absolutely fantastic. Let’s put one in at every theme park ever, okay?
There is a good reason that this Shockwave train is empty. All of its riders are dead. Mmhm.
Robb Alvey (TPR) and John Pagel (KD Marketing) explain the rules for the walkback: 1) Stay on the gravel. 2) Don’t get hit by trucks. I’m sure there were more…oh well.
Here’s where we start our backstage tour – I’ll get my miscellaneous photos out of the way before I barrage you with I305 pictures!
You can’t get this shot of Rebel Yell from anywhere else – it’s taken from a spot near the first massive support for I305′s lift hill!
Volcano’s over there doing it’s thing – in the feels-like-the-Congo part of the Congo. And now, for something different: something WordPress calls the NextGEN Gallery. Let’s try it out!
I call that economical-picturing!
New for 2011: 2012 – The Ride. Experience the end of the world a year early!
But really. The skies got…dark. But then they cleared up and all was okay!
View from the waterpark. Kings Dominion has one of the best complexes I’ve ever seen – a pitch-black freefall slide, a crazy, twisting, dark body slide, and two enclosed double-tube slides with jets and waterfalls throughout. Fantastic!
Also, Kings Dominion’s wave pool is one of the nicest ones I’ve seen. And now there’s a great view!
The last ride on our list was Italian Jo–err, Backlot Stunt Coaster. BLSC is easily the best family ride around – three launches, a high-G helix, a long dark tunnel, and plenty of scenery.
I just wish that all of the effects lasted past the first season. The onboard audio is completely gone, the helicopter only moves once in a while, and the fire and water elements are mostly turned off.
And just like the broken effects, we broke the ride as well. Better to be sitting here than standing in line during a breakdown though!
To kick off the evening – an hour of ERT on Volcano and Flight of Fear (lights on)! Volcano was running fantastically – being the only two people on the train, in the front row, is quite an experience!
With only two people in the train, up front, Volcano was shooting out of the top of the mountain remarkably faster than with a full train. And instead of the leisurely rolls during the day, the heartlines felt like they were trying to force you out – upside-down!
And then came Flight of Fear with the lights on! It’s very interesting – Kings Dominion has an entire crane system built into the top of the ride building! And dotting the floor are boxes of restraints and wheels and the like! Also, parts are painted yellow – thoughts?
And, overlapping our hour of ERT on Volcano and FoF was nearly two hours of ERT on I305! So, in two hours, we got three rides on Volcano, one on FoF, and four on I305 – including a front-seat ride on all of them! An absolutely fantastic way to end the day!
Thanks again to Robb, Elissa, John, Ed, Stephanie, Rose, and all of the ride crews who made Sunday the most fantastic day I’ve spent at an amusement park ever (MAYBE tied with CoasterMania!2009)!