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McSalsa's Coaster Adventures: Halloweekend Havoc (Cedar Point 9-14 and 9-15 2019)


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Hello everyone! This past weekend, me, my sister, her boyfriend and our 2 roommates (who will be called "R" and "B") went to Cedar Point for a 2-day trip. This trip was also during Halloweekends. I did ride a few new rides on this trip, so I need to show the "ride rating system" I guess:

RIDE RATING SYSTEM (For New Un-ridden rides or major updates) (Won't be used until Part 2 Though)
9=I Adore This Ride
8=I Really Like This Ride
7=This Ride is Fun, I Like It
6=It's OK Enough, Will Ride Again
5=Meh, No Feelings Either Way for Various Reasons
4=Ehh, Kinda Bad
3=Yuck, Bad

PART 1: Saturday- September 14th, 2019

We left for the park very early in the morning, but due to some unforseen delays, we didn't make it to the park in time to beat the rush to Steel Vengeance. So instead we headed for Ohio's 1st Big Blue Giga Coaster (there will be 2 in 2020), Millennium Force. We got on after about a 20 minute wait, and got a solid ride on the OG Giga Coaster. It was fast, but due to the fact this was early in the morning the ride was still "warming up" and thus was a bit sluggish compared to how it typically runs later on. This is something that happens to a lot of coasters though, not just Millennium Force. Don't judge a ride just based on a early morning ride! It was still a lot of fun though, even at this early stage.

After MF, we decided to go get in line for TTD, but my sister stopped to get a drink, and it took 10 minutes to do so because the cashiers at the Coasters Drive-In were clearly still learning the computer system (With a bunch of locals in school, I imagine CP had to do some extra hiring just for Halloweekends). We got to TTD about 10 minutes after the park opened, and it already was over a 1-hour wait. This was the first warning of what was to come. We didn't wait for TTD, and instead headed over to Magnum XL-200 which was a walk-on. Magnum may not be the smoothest ride out there, but the coaster's powerful ejector airtime (even so early on it was strong) and great setting more than make up for it IMO. Also, I love that they brought back the final tunnel lights and fog.

Heading down the midway, we next hit Gemini. Our roomates went for the Blue Train, while my sister, her boyfriend, and me rode in the Red- very split up though as I went for the very back of the red train (but a middle seat in that car), and they were near the front. Gemini is a fun coaster- pretty smooth when you aren't on a rear wheel, great airtime, and it does the racing thing a lot better than Kings Island's Racer. And to make it even better, we on Red Train won! HAHA! After Gemini, we headed into Frontier Town, as we were heading towards the Forbidden Frontier "New for 2019" attraction but we didn't realize it was closed for the season. While in Frontier Town, most of us (B sat out- he is still intimidated by certain rides) rode Skyhawk. My sister and R both freaked out on this ride last time, and they still did a little bit here, it went much better than last time. Me and my sister's boyfriend both just enjoyed the ride though, Skyhawk is good fun.

After Skyhawk, we did a quick stop in the CP Town Hall Museum (always cool), then headed down Frontier Trail. This is when we learned Forbidden Frontier had closed for the season (D'oh!) so after a quick stop at the petting zoo, we headed down the midway (locking some stuff in a locker down the way), and found some food trucks past Millennium Force. I got some Nachos with cheese because they were cheap, and I eventually ended up breaking away from the group to ride Rougarou by myself. This is when the crowds had really began to pick up- Rougarou, usually a walk-on, had a 30 minute wait! Still the good news is, Rougarou is a B&M that runs 3 32-passenger trains, so the line at least moved very well. And when I did finally get to ride, I got front row! Rougarou is much smoother from the front row, and the ride has some great intensity and g-forces. Another fun ride. However, what I saw at the top of the lift hill terrified me: THE PARKING LOT WAS 100% FULL!

My friends had gone to ride GateKeeper, so I headed over to meet with B who didn't ride. We chilled for a bit near GateKeeper Plaza, when I saw Raptor do a empty test run. I headed over to check it out- there was a small line of people waiting for the ride to re-open from whatever breakdown had happened, but it wasn't bad. I got in line. They cycled the ride for 30-45 minutes (I only waited this long because all huge rides had lines about this long anyway), even putting a 3rd train back on the track, but I stayed and waited it out as they were cycling constantly and this was a B&M after all, and then Raptor re-opened and I was on one of the first trains back out. And I am glad I waited for it, because this was my best ride ever on Raptor: it was pretty smooth, save a few turns here and there, and the speed and g-forces were excellent. The final turn was still rough as heck, though, as always. After the awesome Raptor ride, I met back up with B: the rest of our group had STILL not gotten on GateKeeper! It ended up being almost a 2-hour wait for them! We only barely made it back to our locker in time to get our stuff. We also ate a cancellation fee for a hotel 20 minutes away we had booked, and just booked Express Hotel at this time (I was shocked they had empty rooms still avaliable considering the crowds, but then again if this was mostly Gold Pass people they would not be using the hotels I'd imagine), as we were nervous about the park hitting capacity and stopping people from coming in. We then headed over to Maverick, but it broke down as we got there, and after 30 minutes of waiting for it to re-open, we gave up for now. After this, we eventualy headed over to Magnum XL-200 again. It had a 45-minute wait, but with everything having big lines we just sucked it up and chose Magnum anyway. The line did move amazingly though with all 3 trains running and the ride ops working crazy fast, but it was indeed about 45 minutes due to the sheer number of people in line. I think Magnum had more people in line for it here than Diamondback typically does during Haunt! However, we played some games on our phones, looked at the awesome "30 Years of Magnum" posters, and after 45 minutes we did get on the coaster. Magnum was warmed up now, so the ejector airtime was very strong now, and we got a even better ride than the one earlier in the day.

With the sheer amount of crowds, and us needing to rest, we headed to our Hotel for about a hour and half. On the way out, we saw numerous cars parked in weird spots, and a huge line of cars were coming in the park as well. After "recharging" at the Hotel and getting food at McDonalds, we headed back to the park around 9pm- and found tons of people were leaving, thankfully! However while the crowds had died down a bit, most major rides still had huge lines. For a while I broke off from the group again and got in line for Top Thrill Dragster, but the line for it was moving so slow, I ditched when I checked my phone to see Maverick had re-opened and was "only" a 1 hour wait. However, Maverick was down when I got there (it had re-opened: for 10 minutes!) However I still dodged a bullet, as about 10 minutes before I would have gotten on TTD (had I stayed) it broke down and stayed down. At Maverick, my group re-united briefly before my sister, Roommate R, and her boyfriend went to do a Haunt while me and Roomate B went to ride Gemini again. Gemini gave us a great night ride, and there was no wait for it as the crowds had thinned out at the less popular rides at least. Then we headed over to Magnum XL-200 yet again for a 3rd ride, which we waited 5 minutes for. It was even better than the 2nd ride, since it was night now making the lake a black abyss and the tunnels pitch black...save the last one which at night becomes a colorful mess.

After Magnum XL-200, the group reunited yet again at Steel Vengeance (save "B" who would run over and ride Maverick twice when it re-opened near closing), and we got in line at 11:15pm. At 12:30, after passing through the new metal detectors and everything, we boarded the Blackjack train. A 75 minute wait for Steel Vengeance isn't too bad, especially when you consider it was 2 1/2 hours earlier. And the ride was worth it- Steel Vengeance is my favorite coaster, and this ride reinforced its claim to that title. Tons of sustained ejector air, smooth track, aggressive turns and barrel rolls...and then you do it all again underneath the structure. An amazing ride to end a kinda rough (due to crowds mostly) but still great day.

And now, for pictures from Saturday:


The sun rises over the Indiana/Ohio Border!


All Fear the Great Wind Mill Army! :P


Cedar Point! Complete with Seagull to the bottom right. :P


Don't Touch GateKeeper's pumpkins.


Power Tower and TTD. 2 Huge Rides at a park filled with them.


The OG Big Blue Giga Coaster, Millennium Force!


Rougarou and Iron Dragon.


Gemini and its namesake midway




Snake River Falls, and Forbidden Frontier (both closed)




MaXair, Sky Ride, and Raptor, as seen from GateKeeper Plaza


TTD at Night. In true TTD fashion, not very long after this, it would break down. :P (Shocked how good this pic came out)


VENGEANCE WILL BE MINE!!! (Sorry for blurry pic, at night my phone typically kinda sux)

And that is all for now. Tomorrow I will probably post part 2, which will speak of how Sunday went (Minor Spoiler: A LOT BETTER). Per usual, questions and comments welcome!



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Great post. My family went up for the weekend too. It was a crazy mess up there. We went after the rain on Friday and was able to ride steel vengeance, maverick, and millennium force in an hour. It made the rest of the weekend nice since we were not worrying about getting on any ride. We were able to enjoy walking around and seeing all the Halloween decor and shows. 

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...ok, I have rested up a bit and let the Day 1 part of the trip go up itself for a while: now, time for Sunday- Part 2! Ride rating system for new rides (or major updates) is in Part 1.

Part 2: Sunday, September 15th, 2019

Some of the people in our group slept in, so we didn't leave Breakers Express until ERT was almost starting, thus we were not going to get Steel Vengeance ERT. When we arrived at the park, we instead opted to ride Valravn (save for "B" who won't do a ride with inversions unless it is Maverick) since according to the app Maverick was down. We were sat in the back row, and while hanging over the edge wasn't as intimidating, I got some nice airtime on both vertical drops as well as the airtime hill near the end of the ride. The ride was also very smooth. After getting off Valravn, we headed over to TTD, but found it was still broken as whatever happened on Saturday was major, so it would be closed all day. No TTD rides on this trip for me then, d'oh!

However, Maverick was back open, so we headed over to it to find a 30 minute wait. For Maverick that isn't bad at all, so we got in line and waited. When we got on the line had already swollen up to over a hour, however! Maverick didn't break down this time, so we were able to board and got a awesome ride- lots of airtime, plenty of twists, and a powerful launch were all highlights. After Maverick, we headed over to the Cedar Point & Lake Erie Railroad, and rode it down to the Millennium Force plaza. However MF was a hour wait at this point, so we skipped it and got some food at the nearby food trucks. I got a hot dog. Most of the group wanted to ride Sky Ride to GateKeeper, but since I'd be riding alone I decided to walk and see if I could beat them to it. I did, but part of the reason was the rest of the group had decided to go to the car for a bit. So I rode GateKeeper solo, as it was only a 15 minute wait, from the 2nd to last seat on the right wing. The ride was running great, good g-forces and speed (It was for sure not being "GateSleeper"!) and I even got some airtime on the airtime hill. After riding GateKeeper, I headed over to Wicked Twister which also had a short wait, about 5-10 minutes. I rode towards the back, and thus really got "spun" on the backwards launch. Good fun. After riding WT, my group was back so I rode it again immediatley after, but we went for a seat closer to the front, and got another great ride. Then we rode GateKeeper again, again about a 15 minute wait, and this time I rode from the very back. It was about the same as the first ride a bit earlier.

My friends decided to smoke for a bit, so next, I rode a new ride I had never ridden at Cedar Point before...

NEW RIDE: Troika
Basically, it's the exact same ride as Shake Rattle & Roll at Kings Island with a different paintjob. However, both rides are fun, as you spin and twist in the air.
Score: 7/10

After Troika, my friends were done smoking, so we went and rode MaXair. If you have ridden Delirium, MaXair is the same thing but the ride cycle goes 1 swing longer once it gets up to full speed, thus making MaXair the better of the two rides. After MaXair, my group went to see a show, so I went and rode Raptor again since it was so good on Saturday. The line said it was a 30 minute wait, but due to B&M Capacity it was really only 15 minutes, the line for Raptor just kept moving. I noticed in the Raptor control booth there was a drawing that called Raptor "Queen of the Birds". If Valravn is the "King", then that means Raptor married him, and I imagine GateKeeper is the royal bodyguard, LOL. Raptor was a bit weaker than it was on Saturday, but not by very much and it was still a epic ride. After Raptor I got in line for "Boo" Streak, and right before I got on my friends show finished but I was close to riding so I rode solo. Boo (Blue) Streak was running pretty decent, not too rough, but the airtime was also a bit weak. After that, my friends went and got some beer and were eating at Chickie+Pete's, so I sat in the Raptor/Blue Streak plaza and just chilled for a while. I did get some nice pictures during this time, which you can see at the end. Also, it drizzled a little bit, but not for too long or very hard at all.

When my friends were done eating, we headed out of Raptor/Blue Streak Plaza to find it was 4pm, which meant the Great Pumpkin Parade was going on. We followed it as we were heading for WindSeeker, but my sister and friends realized some haunts were open (unlike Kings Island, CP has a few indoor haunted attractions open on Sundays). I broke off from the group yet again since I don't like Haunts too much, and headed down the beach boardwalk. With Hotel Breakers closed, this was actually quite nice as there was barely anyone on the boardwalk. At the end of the boardwalk, I spotted my target ride: A big old Arrow from 1989.

Magnum had about a 10 minute wait, and was back down to 2 trains instead of 3- a good sign that the park was much less crowded than on Saturday. I rode in 6-2 near the back, and got lots of good ejector airtime as usual. After riding Magnum, I headed back up to meet my friends at WindSeeker but they had moved on, so I went over to Iron Dragon to ride that. As the ride climbed up the lift, suddenly, we got E-Stopped: and a ride op came up and took a phone from someone in the front row. I saw this happen on Raptor too. When will people learn? Le sigh. However, with the phone taken, the ride started back up and I got a fun, smooth ride swooping through the trees. Iron Dragon may not be the most intense coaster ever, but it's still fun. I then headed over and walked onto a ride that is actually intense, Rougarou, next. This time I was put in the very back, and while I found the front row of Rougarou quite smooth, the back is kinda rough. I was able to avoid headbanging, but I had to be defensive to do so. I did still enjoy the ride, however. After Rougarou, I headed back to Power Tower, to find my group was still not done on the beach. I chilled near the Iron Dragon plaza for a bit, watching a heavy metal music show, then wandered to Valravn and took some pictures. Then I headed to Power Tower again, then I saw Corkscrew had literally no wait, so I went ahead and rode that. The retro paint job on the trains is actually pretty cool, and the banners that were added this year to both Corkscrew and Gemini are nice. Sadly, besides looking cool, and I am not really a fan of Corkscrew's trains: they are lifted up a bit higher than Vortex's, and thus while I am comfy and snug on Vortex, here I felt cramped up. I didn't get headbanged because of this (I was too tight to be moved) though. And Corkscrew did have some good g-forces and airtime. I am not a huge fan of Corkscrew but when it is a walk-on, I'll ride it, it's a OK ride. However I very much perfer KI's Vortex.

After Corkscrew, I headed to the Magnum Gate, and waited for my group. They came in, and hearing Corkscrew was a walk-on, we got back in line to find it had broken down, so we got out of line. We then headed over to Power Tower. Earlier, Space Shot was down, but it had been fixed and re-opened. So we did that side.

NEW RIDE: Power Tower- Space Shot
Imagine Drop Tower at Kings Island...but in reverse. Instead of going up slow and then dropping, you get SHOT UP instead. Then you bounce around near the top for a bit, get some great views, and come back down slowly. I really liked this ride, though I do still perfer Drop Tower at KI as I thought it was a bit more forceful, and I like the suspense of waiting for the drop from high up. Also, I was on the side facing Valravn and Raptor.
Score: 8/10

After Power Tower, my friends wanted to ride Iron Dragon and Rougarou. Both were about the same as earlier: my sister was the only one of the 4 of us who rode Rougarou who didn't like it (Roommate B sat out), she got headbanged because she is short. After Rougarou, we got in line for Millennium Force, which we planned to make our final ride of this trip. The wait was about 40 minutes, but the line moved pretty well. As the sun was gone and darkness was setting in, we got a quasi-night ride on Millennium Force, and it was great. The speed was much better than our 1st ride on Saturday, as the ride was fully broken in, and I did get some decent airtime to boot- plus I was riding in the very back car, so I got yanked over the 1st drop and then fell 300 feet getting airtime the whole way down. After the final ride on Millennium Force, we headed out, used a nearby restroom, and chilled for a bit watching the screamsters from Frontier Town head out past us which was fun. We also heard the Millennium Force crew send out the final train of the night. After this, we headed out and left the park, and came home.

And that was Day 2 of Cedar Point! Had a ton of fun both days, but Sunday was better because of less crowds. We probably are gonna take a year off from Cedar Point in 2020, as we wanna hit up other parks, so it'll be a while before we come back. Hopefully Gold Pass madness has died down a bit by then. Anyhow, before I give some final thoughts...MOAR PICTUREZ FROM SUNDAY!!!


Steel Vengeance in the morning! I didn't ride this Sunday, but felt as my #1 coaster, I should take a pic of it anyway. :P


Not only is CP teasing about Orion's height, but they are lying and adding 2 feet to Millennium Force's!?!?


It's Wickedly Twisty! :P


A King and His Queen. (According to Raptor's ride op box at least)




Going for a Loop!


A huge barge. And in the distance, that white thing is a 2nd huge barge.


Boardwalk views.


Hotel Breakers- it's not super cheap, but this place is convenient to stay at when visiting Cedar Point.


Magnum XL-200: Even when you see it, you won't believe it! 30 years old and still awesome. B)


A big awesome 300 foot Giga Coaster, and a big broken 400 foot Strata Coaster.


WindSeeker from the boardwalk- this pic was cooler last year when we got a rainbow in it, though.


Valravn near sunset.

OK, that's it for pictures. Now for final Pros/Cons of both days...

+Amazing Rides

+Beautiful Landscaping and Scenery, even if not themed very much

+Ride Operations were generally fast for most rides (Magnum XL-200 and Raptor especially)

+Express Hotel was decently clean and nice to stay at


-Monster crowds on Saturday: the park nearly hit capacity, and I was waiting 45 minutes for Magnum and stuff! (Really made me respect how CP has kept their old Arrow coasters and such, they were lifesavers!)

-Top Thrill Dragster breaking down and not running Sunday

-Many other rides did have breakdowns, though not as bad as TTD's as they all re-opened at least, and I did get lucky with Raptor on Saturday

Anyhow, that is all for this trip report. Comments and questions are, of course, still welcome. Now I await my next trip, which will probably be Kings Island Haunt. Haunt at KI can get busy, but after "surviving" this Saturday at CP, I think I will more than be able to handle KI's Haunt. McSalsa Away! :P


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