At the request of markr MrsDiamondbill and I are posting our trip report the good, the bad, and the ugly. We left Columbus 8/3 at 7 AM to spend the evening with MrsDiamondbill's ( who will be refered to as Judy for the remainder of the report) brother, sister-in-law, and nephew in Richmond. Had a good visit and dinner topped off with a trip to the local DQ. We arrived at Kings Dominion at 11 AM Monday. The first thing that struck me was how much International Street looked very much like KI's. The second thing was all the trees, it was very easy to stay cool on a hot day. Our first ride was the Shenendohah Lumber Company, I can't resist a log flume. The hill appeared to be the tallest I've seen but the ride was short, but stiil good. Next was Grizzly a replica of Coney Island's Wildcat a ride that was dismantled in 1964 when I was 2. It was a great ride completely coverd by trees. At this time I should mention that the sign out front said the following attractions will not operate today Dodgems and you guessed it Flying Eagles, there's the bad. We headed over to Rebel Yell, their version of The Racer. We can't believe our eyes, bright, fresh red, white, and blue paint like Racer's glory days. We rode the red side. The drops on the return run aren't quite as deep but wait for it....a final drop with head chop effect and open sided brake runs. On a slightly sour note the paint ended at the lift hill, oh well you can't have everything. From there it was off to I305, Judy isn't a fan of anything taller than Diamond back so it was off to the shade for her. Somewhere someone said it's like Millineum Force crossed with Maverick and I can't describe it any better than that it' perfect. More bad had an issue with a spitter two rows ahead of me on my second ride, station attendant handled it. Next was Volcano for me, longest wait or the day. Was talking to the guys behind me they were very friendly one looked very familiar I think he is a Hip Hop artist but I didn't want to sound like a square and ask, and if he was he probably would prefer to be a normal guy for the day. Volcano was another ride I expected to be longer but it was still very cool. Took in their wheels show, a close rival to Cirque Imagine but I'll give the edge to Cirque. Now time to bare my soul for some reason Dominator spooked me, I passed on it in 2 trips to Geauga Lake. It was great took four rides plus a victory lap! We went back to ride the carousel then Rebel Yell blue and Hurler, we rode Hurler I'll leave it at that.
Now the ugly. We were booked at Hampton Inn in Durham NC the internet page didn't have the I85 exit # so Judy calls to ask which exit they are at, the lady laughed and asked what exit are we at and someone said 172A. They are actually at 176A and the is no exit at mile 172. At this point it strikes me that I have seen no cars northbound and the bad feeling hits I85 north is closed somewhere in the 150 area nice joke clowns, after calling the hotel back to let them know we wouldn't be there I was told my card is still being billed, we'll see. We called the hotel we were booked in in Concord and got the last room, a suite 185.00 and we didn't get there until 1 AM.
Tuesday was spent at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Two highlights, met a guy name David from Louisianna who bore a more than striking sesemblance to Dale Sr., and beat three out four Cup Rookie of the Year contenders on the simulator. Not bad for an old drag racer.
Wednesday we got to Carowinds at 10AM. Off to Intimidator for me, Judy wasn't feeling it. Great ride altough the airtime seems to be killed by turns. Rode it a few times then went back to Afterburn, my favorite invert before Banshee. Argh it's closed (somewhere youngstud is laughing). Oh well on to Thunder Road again argh but it will open at noon. Off to a couple of turns on the Dodgems. Next was Caroline Goldrusher, Judy said this is her favorite mine ride I liked it too. Ricochet was next, the modern version of the Cedar Point Wildcat type ride, they are fun but mostly all the same with a few spinnig exceptions. On to Vortex for me, oh my aching ears but still fun. I passed on Thunderhawk had a bad experience on it last trip there. It only has a single load platform unlike Firehawk, there was a problem with the train in the station that left us on the brake run with our hips higher than our heads for 45 minutes. Finally Thunder Road is open, it was down for the season last trip so this was a quest like Dominator. The South Carolina side was the only one operating. Almost identical to Rebel Yell with all the drops and head choppers at the end, however it was completely unpainted, I know it doesn't change the ride but it just had a kind of industrial look. Was starting to get a headache so we passed on the Vecoma, Arrow looper offerings and of course Hurler because well it's Hurler. A few more laps on Intimidator for me and a 1.5 hour trip 40 miles to the hotel, Charlotte traffic can be rough.
We were heading north at 8 AM Thursday with a stop in Floyd Virginia to visit my sister at her new house on top of a ridge in the Blue Ridge Mountains. We have only seen each other once since our mother passed in 2007. Just by coincedence it was our late father's Birthday, we had a good lunch and visit. Finally back home at 9 Pm.
The one thing that I found odd at both parks is other than both Intimidators the ride announcements are all prerecorded, just seemed a little impersonal to me. It also left all the ride platform attendants to appear zombie like just going through the moves, other than that we liked both parks but wouldn't trade them for Kings Island.