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McSalsa's Coaster Adventures (TR): Banshee Madness 2014!


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Well, I was going to rest a bit, but part of me can't help but want to get this over with since it shouldn't take too long- here is my opening day 2014 trip report from Kings Island- my first visit to the park since May 5th, 2012 BTW. :P


We actually met up with a large group of my sister's friends, plus one of her friend's families. Her father rented a large SUV for us to use- and it was cool. Around 8:10, we left and stopped at a McDonalds Truck Stop for Breakfast, and then headed towards KI. With a brief bathroom break included on the trip, we made a mis-turn and ended up taking a different route to KI than usual...we first saw the Eiffel Tower at 11:23 AM, and we were ALREADY in line for parking we realized. A few minutes later, some dude in another SUV tried to do the car version of line jumping, and scraped the side of our rental SUV and then successfully tried to enter the parking lot! Luckily, daddy was smart and got maximum insurance on the SUV, plus we got tons of info and pictures of incident and called the cops- the car rental agency is going to make this guy pay. No one was injured on any level in the "crash", thankfully as well. It was a rough start to the day- and it got rougher once we actually saw the line to get into the park! Upon learning our printed out season pass vouchers could get us in themselves without a card (one of our friends ran over and asked a KI employee) we got in line with them, figuring to do the processing later. After learning Drop Tower and- Train!?!?- were closed, we waited 30 minutes to enter the park and we decided to head for Flight of Fear before the crowds got uber crazy. We found it with a 45 minute wait, paid $2 to rent a locker, and...the ride broke down. :wacko: Wasted $2. We then headed out looking for a new ride- I wanted to ride Vortex, but many in our group didn't enjoy it due to its roughness, and many were afraid of my other offer of WindSeeker due to its height (I was somewhat suprised WindSeeker actually made an opening day- this was a first!) Finally, we picked a ride...with low capacity.

RIDE #1: Backlot Stunt Coaster
Wait: 40 Minutes

OK, 40 minutes isn't TOO bad for BLSC. I hadn't ridden this since 2010 due to long lines, so I was quite pleased to be reminded how fun and forceful this small coaster can be. All of the remaining theming was working, and it was a fun ride. Since I have a gold pass now, when I visit on less crowded days I should take note to ride this more often!
Score: 8/10


After BLSC, we tried to decide on another ride, and ended up getting hungry in the process, only to find nearly everything- even food stands- now had lines! :blink: Father, who had just dealt with the hit-and-run guy (the cops found him and he was given a ticket for his actions), met up with us and we eventually decided since we were getting gold passes anyway to just go ahead and grind out Banshee...we said OK. We reached the "official" Q-Line in around 30 minutes, when my sister ran off from us and came back with food from the new Chicken Shack- she shared it among us, and we would need the energy, because Banshee...had a 4 1/2 hour wait!

RIDE #2: Banshee
Wait: 4 1/2 Hours (New Personal Record and OMG WTF worthy)

What a wait. Ouch. My legs were so sore near the end. We finally got on after watching Fast Lane abuse and line jumpers up the butt, and we decided to just ride front row- might as well, given how long we had already waited, eh? To compensate for this wait, Banshee would need to be epic...

Banshee, amazingly, made me suddenly forget all the pain and anger caused by that 4 1/2 hour line. The speeds were fast, the forces intense, and the inversions incredible. The theming in the Q-Line also helped- another major plus for this ride- those were some nice gravestones. Especially the SOB one and O' Terpy. :P This was my very first B&M Invert and it is now my #1 steel coaster I have ridden...I may have found another style of coaster I really like. One MINOR complaint besides the crowds- the vest did feel a bit tight on my collarbone, nothing to major but it was a bit uncomfortable. It didn't get any tighter during the ride however. It was also quite fun riding with Sister's Friend's Dad as he is also a fellow coaster nut and his remarks were hillarious... "Banshee IS A B##CH, AND I LOVE IT!!!" :P

Score: 10/10!!!

After Banshee, we decided we might as well go get our passes done. I was expecting this to be slow and agonizing, but the line was shockingly short! And it moved FAST! A few minutes later, we exited and I had a shiny new gold season pass. I couldn't wait to use it- but I and everyone else in the group had become hungry again thanks to Banshee's line. Off we went to a restraunt me and my sister wanted to try- Hank's Burrito Shack! I made a custom burrito, and it was quite delicious- though I'd still give the edge to the Chicken Shack Chicken Fingers & Fries from earlier. We also ate on the outdoor patio in the back which gives an AWESOME view of Banshee. After this, we decided to ride WindSeeker next since it would likely not bug our stomach's. We saw it running as we walked down Coney Mall. We reached it, and...IT BROKE DOWN. WindSeeker DODGES ME AGAIN!!! :wacko:


After yet another WindSeeker dissapointment (WindSeeker seems to be the new Son of Beast for me!), we decided to take advantage of a new-for-2014 Gold Pass perk- free Dinos! Our group split as ticket sales had ended for the day (it was 7:30 now) and some of our friends just had day tickets (I feel for them!). Due to it being 30 minutes from closing, we didn't have to deal with the massive crowds I am told Dino's had earlier in the day, and enjoyed the attraction- it is fairly cool. Nothing amazing, but I could easily see a kid loving this...I kinda did too deep inside.
DA! Score: 7/10

After Dinosaurs Alive!, our group was at a crossroads. We had discussed riding The Beast at Night, versus Flight of Fear. While Flight of Fear is my sister's favorite ride, the group favored Beast, and upon hearing it had been re-tracked we went for a night ride...


My sister and one of her friends played some games in Rivertown- and won both times (YES!)- on our our way to Beast. However, the group began to split off from us, until it was just and my sister. She agreed to ride Beast with me, since she knew I wanted to really ride it as it is my favorite ride of all time (so far at least). I thanked her and made a promise- when we came back, first ride: Flight of Fear. :P After a 2-hour wait that felt much shorter after that Banshee line, 30 minutes of it due to the fireworks, we rode The Beast...at NIGHT!!!

RIDE #3: The Beast @ NIGHT
Wait, the final ride of the night is only #3!?!? Dang, Banshee ATE my day. Oh well- I have a season pass now and can return ;) . Anyhow, we boarded the train on car 2-2 and took off up the chain lift. It was chilly and dark...perfect weather for this wooden behemoth apparently, as it FLEW through the course and the woods. The recent re-track (or so I was told- did it get retracked this year) worked according to my sister as it was pretty smooth for a woodie. As usual, the tunnels were pitch black, the speeds were incredible, and the helix was mind-blowing. Another zen ride that pretty much fixed ALL of the day's flaws for us...courtesy of The Beast. 35 years and still rollin' like a champion.
Score: 11/10!!!

After riding Beast, we tried to get a good view of Banshee's night theming from International Street before heading to the truck (which was still working fine- it just had a dent in it now and some scrapes from earlier) and headed home- stopping for some food along the way back. And now here I am again after a long, fun day with only 3 rides. Meh, when 2 of those are Zen Rides and the other is solid anyway...who cares how many rides you had?


Banshee x1

Dinosaurs Alive! x1

The Beast (Night) x1

In spite of jerk drivers, massive crowds, and being able to ride few rides I really enjoyed this trip. Banshee is everything I expected- and more. This thing is going to be a great addition to KI's ride lineup. I just hope I don't have to wait 4+ hours every time. Also, Action Zone looks amazing now.

Beast, at 35, is still rolling like a champion. Why am I not shocked?

The park REALLY could have done a better job managing the crowds, though...that was the big low point of the day. Line Jumpers and Fast Lane Abusers galore...Banshee seems to not only bring out the evil within other rides- she also does her work on mortals, it seems...(There were no Line Jumpers and there was much less FL abuse at Beast than there was at Banshee)

Overall: A great trip, even if it didn't go 100% according to plan. And now that I have that Gold Season pass, expect more of these in 2014. I didn't visit KI at all in 2013...and plan to more than make up for that this year.

Also, with Banshee there now, I barely even noticed Son of Beast being gone. :P I hope you enjoyed this trip report- there MAY be pictures, but they will come later.

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"The park REALLY could have done a better job managing the crowds, though...that was the big low point of the day. Line Jumpers and Fast Lane Abusers galore...Banshee seems to not only bring out the evil within other rides- she also does her work on mortals, it seems...(There were no Line Jumpers and there was much less FL abuse at Beast than there was at Banshee)"

I'm really glad you mentioned this because my wife and I noticed this too. I was a HUGE problem when we were suffering through our 4+ hours wait. It was completely insane how many people were coming through the line to meet up with other people who were already there. We also made it a game of counting all the Fast Lane people coming in and were making "cha ching, cha ching" sounds as they entered the Fast Lane entrance lol. We had to make light of it or we could've become pretty angered by watching all the abusers. Oh well. Sounds like you had a rough day (at some parts), but glad that it turned out good anyways!

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