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SFA Trip Report 10/04

10/06/14 at 04:12pm in SFA Trip Report 10/04 (Latest Edit: 10/06/14 at 04:21pm by UncleDuncan.)
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A group of friends alerted me to a "deal" for SFA Friday. I was planning on going camping but a cold front hit the mountains so I had nothing better to do. Guess I'm going to SFA, right?

(note to self: talk about the deal after the trip report)

The day at the park started at noon. After getting the park map, I decided our group of 4 should navigate in a sort of counter clockwise fashion, starting at the Mardi Gras section first. Our first ride was Ragin' Cajun... But before I talk about the abomination that is Ragin' Cajun, let me address the layout of the park:

It's stupid.

To make matters worse, because of the Halloween events, many of the thoroughfares were closed off. It's as if an already slow child hit it's head while aimlessly running around the kitchen unsupervised. Repeatedly.

... Back to Ragin' Cajun. The line had about 10 people in front of us and it still took 20 minutes to get seated. Don't ask me why. Whilst waiting in line, one could surmise this is a fun take on a wildmaus-type coaster with an updated train and zany spinning antics. Don't be fooled. It's total crap. However, I will say the Mardi Gras section of the park is nice looking. I only point this out because the rest of the park looks like a tornado hit it.

We moved on to Wild One, a standard older woodie with a lot of spunk. The ride had no wait and we walked right on. No one was stabbed in the process of waiting or riding the Wild One. Fun ride. I recommend it.

Then came Apocalypse. I noticed right away it was a stand up coaster, and I swore those off years ago (eff you, Shockwave). But someone in the party mentioned how "smooth" it looked and maybe, just maybe, this one would be the exception to the bunch.

I was wrong.

My neck still hurts from riding this abomination. It's just as uncomfortable as any other stand up coaster. Further investigation revealed this "new" ride is just a transplant from somewhere else. They probably moved it because the townfolk from where it came are all quadriplegics now. I will say the themed portions of the ride were kind of cool, similar to Stunt Lot at Kings Dominion, but for the pain in the neck it is, literally, it's not worth it.

Moving along we ended up at Roar, a newer woodie. By now, I had realized there was no one in the park and the rest of the day was pretty much going to be walk on for every ride. Score. Roar was no exception and we walked right on. What a great ride this one is. Might be my favorite in the park. All told, I revisited Roar 3 times and is the case with most wooden coasters, the back row is the best.

We then traversed through Coyote Creek to the Mind Eraser... Standard Vekoma SLC fare in my opinion. These are not aging well and while sure, fun, also completely forgettable. The ride capacity seems to be crap too but with so few people in the park, it was really hard to gauge how bad it is on a normal operating day. Anyhow, it was there, I rode it, and I have no stories to tell.

Around this time I pulled back out the map because navigating this park is a complete pain in the ass. Apparently you have to walk under one of the wooden roller coasters to get to the Gotham section? Holy crap, who designed this place? And then there's the recurring theme of the day: half the walkways to get anywhere were blocked off so maneuvering around was totally stupid and often we had to backtrack, only to pull out the map and find out we overshot wherever we were trying to get to. Beyond annoying.

Anyhow, I found Gotham. It's actually the second nicest area in the park. Joker's Jinx was out of commission (until later that night) so we walked to Superman Ride of Steel. Finally, a steel coaster worth talking about in this dump. Ride of Steel is fast, fun, long and THRILLING. I screamed, I laughed, I cried a little bit (mostly thinking about Marlon Brando as Superman's dad). It's great. SFA HAS A GREAT COASTER YOU SHOULD RIDE IT.

Moving on, the entrance to Batwing is adjacent to Ride of Steel. A dutchman Vekoma. What is it about these things I don't like? They feel... clunky. I rode it, liked it, but didn't love it. However, I will say after riding it later that night, front row is the way to go and riding it at night adds some spice. Otherwise, it's good. Not bad. Just not great.

Sometime between riding Ride of Steel and Batwing, Jokers Jinx came online. It's ok. It felt oddly familiar as it should. Online research reveals it's exactly the same as Flight of Fear at King's Dominion. Another good, not great, ride. Ugh. This place can be so disappointing.

So around 7pm we decided to upcharge for the Fright Fest or whatever the hell they call it. It was 12 dollars and we did all the rooms and areas in under 2 hours. Tangent: I don't know why you forum people get all excited over haunted walkways with actors and props. They can be sort of fun and these were, but the forum obsession is beyond me. I guess I'm not a purist. I digress, for the haunt fan in all of you I'd recommend Voodoo Curse and Spider Outbreak. They were fun and had some decent scares. I'd skip the 3D house because it was hard on the eyes especially if you have depth perceptions issues. The Haunting Hall Manor was 100% boring and The Blood Factory smells like puke (I'm assuming because of the extensive plastic/molded props - or maybe they were going for a super immersive experience?). The actors on the street were comical and one even did a good job of scaring the group. I also watched the pretend live show Dead Man's Party - I felt I owed it to Danny Elfman and it was so horrible, I loved every second of it. All in all, not bad for 12 dollars. I'd do it again.

Other points worth mentioning include no water rides were open, nor was the water park. I didn't ride any flat rides except for the drop tower which was OK, at best. I ate at Johnny Rockets which was surprisingly good and not a complete rip off. I also drank beer at the Mardi Gras bar (I forget the name) and the bartenders were super fun. And, despite the bad rep this place gets for customer service, I would pat nearly all the workers on the back. They were all cordial.  

So, would I recommend SFA? Probably not. But wait, maybe I would...

Remember that deal? I do. I wrote myself a note up top. For 50 bucks you can get a season ticket now for 2015. Buy 4, and they upgrade to gold with free parking. That's what my friends did and here's something I found out today: all Six Flags season passes work at all parks. As a traveling man, this kind of puts my purchase in a different light. If I hit Great Adventure, Georgia, and Magic Mountain in the next year (which I intend to do) my 50 dollar purchase is looking like quite a steal, with free parking included.

So. To conclude: SFA is a shitstorm of WTF. Ride of Steel is awesome. Stand up roller coasters are horrible. Bad choreographed, lip synced shows (with actors wearing faux microphone head pieces) completely make the Halloween experience for me. And 50 dollars for a season pass to Six Flags is a pretty good value in my eyes.

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10/06/14 at 08:31pm in SFA Trip Report 10/04
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This must be BGW's role model.

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10/06/14 at 08:49pm in SFA Trip Report 10/04
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huh?

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10/06/14 at 09:05pm in SFA Trip Report 10/04
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Six flags over BGW sounds like this.
Idk, just a joke that came to mind. Nevermind.

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10/07/14 at 11:21am in SFA Trip Report 10/04
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I'm surprised you liked their Drop Tower. When I went with Shane and Gavin we noticed that only 2 sides were open and they both had harnesses ghetto-taped everywhere and they were missing brake fins. Maybe it got sent to rehab after I visited but seriously that had to of been one of the scariest rides I've been on ever. There was also a moment when I got to see their maintenance crew hit one of RoS's trains with a hammer the 15 minutes we got to wait to ride.
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10/07/14 at 11:35am in SFA Trip Report 10/04
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I didn't experience any major pieces of machinery being held together with duct tape, which would have probably turned me away (or depending on how many beers in me, may have been translated into a different kind of thrill). But, I wouldn't say I liked it. It was OK.

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10/07/14 at 12:30pm in SFA Trip Report 10/04 (Latest Edit: 10/07/14 at 12:32pm by Shane.)
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(10/06/14 04:12pm)ReggaeInMyJeggae Wrote:  Remember that deal? I do. I wrote myself a note up top. For 50 bucks you can get a season ticket now for 2015. Buy 4, and they upgrade to gold with free parking. That's what my friends did and here's something I found out today: all Six Flags season passes work at all parks. As a traveling man, this kind of puts my purchase in a different light. If I hit Great Adventure, Georgia, and Magic Mountain in the next year (which I intend to do) my 50 dollar purchase is looking like quite a steal, with free parking included.

This is why I've bought a SFA pass every year.

(10/07/14 11:21am)b.mac Wrote:  I'm surprised you liked their Drop Tower. When I went with Shane and Gavin we noticed that only 2 sides were open and they both had harnesses ghetto-taped everywhere and they were missing brake fins. Maybe it got sent to rehab after I visited but seriously that had to of been one of the scariest rides I've been on ever. There was also a moment when I got to see their maintenance crew hit one of RoS's trains with a hammer the 15 minutes we got to wait to ride.

I imagine it got rehabbed when it was repainted and rethemed to New Orleans?

Waking up fresh every mornin'; Openin' up for you; Waitin' for your laughter; With so much new to do! Busch—Gardens! Busch—Gardens! Come to Busch Gardens and come to life! Come to Busch Gardens and come—to life!
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