We departed around 5:15pm and arrived at the park at exactly 6pm. We parked in the free-after-6pm south parking lot and headed to the gate. At the gate, we purchased our $10 wrist bands (non-riders have a $5 admission); the wrist bands have a bar code on them which she “activated” (more on this later). Walking towards the bridge to the park we saw that they were still working on the zip-line that will go across the water and is part of the 2011 expansion called “Adventure Point”. We crossed the swaying suspension bridge and took in our first view of the park. The park looked awesome; the park had the classic amusement / boardwalk feel that I haven’t experienced in a long time. The park was not that crowded with only about a one cycle wait for all the rides (except Steel Hawg).
We walked towards the middle of the park and decided that Cornball Express would be suitable for our first ride of the night. We climbed all the stairs to the platform and were greeted with a one train wait and a wrist band scanner. Upon entering each ride you must scan your wrist band, Mallie (my girlfriend) went first and had no problem. I then tried to scan my wrist band and it would not scan. The operator just shrugged it off and let me through anyway. We stayed towards the front of the train in hopes of a smoother ride and were seated. The ride operators did a good job checking restraints (after my Dell’s experience last year, I am skeptical of these smaller parks); first check seatbelts before the lap bar comes down and then verify the lap bar. While a very secure method, it is extremely slow. This, in addition to only one train on the Cornball Express, would make for an extremely long and slow moving line on a crowded day. Then, we waited in the train for about 5 minutes while they waited to dispatch in order to “time our ride with the Hoosier Hurricane”; basically the operators think it is cool to time the ride with the other so that the trains race each other through one small section of track. In all, the time from unload to our dispatch pushed 7 minutes. Onto the ride, it was very fun. Quick paced, sharp turns, moderate air time, and “roughness like a wooden coaster should have” left us both with a very favorable impression of the ride.
The next ride on our agenda was the Hoosier Hurricane. The ride essentially runs the length of the park. We climbed the mountain of stairs to the entrance (noticing a trend here?) and waited one cycle. The operators were not checking that we scanned our wrist bands so we just proceeded right by. While waiting, we saw that Steel Hawg had opened up and planned to head there next. Only one of the two trains were running and with their lengthy safety checks we waited about 6 minutes for the cycle, boarded, and were on our way. Once again, a fun ride with decent airtime, but rougher than the Cornball Express. Just didn’t feel like it carried speed throughout the entire course. There were many instances of “should I really have my hands up?” because of the head choppers.
We headed towards Steel Hawg after a quick stop at the restrooms (not clean at all). The wait was about 10 cycles because there were only running 2 out of the 4 trains. Once again, the cycles were really slow. When it was our turn to ride we tried to scan our wrist bands and mine worked this time, but Mallie’s did not. The operator didn’t shrug it off like the last one did so we had to do some convincing and were allowed to ride, but told to go to guest relations after. This is another issue that leads to slow operations, the wrist bands are not scanned until the moment you are boarding the ride. Any issue with the wrist band or even someone slowly scanning a wrist band directly impacts dispatch times, there is no buffer. Finally on the ride, we headed quickly up the lift and down the 111 degree drop, through some inner and outer banked turns, and then through two extended rolls. Overall, it was an extremely fun ride (it would eventually be rated by us as the best ride in the park). This ride improves my impression of the Euro-Fighter type rides… can we get more in America, please? Only other interesting thing of note was the guy seated behind us lost his keys in the middle of the ride and they landed on the loading platform; lucky for everyone, guy didn’t lose his keys and no one was hit.
Next we headed to guest relations were we got our wrist band issue straightened out. The front gate attendant activated both of our wrist bands under the same id. The system thought they were the same wrist band. After this we went to the classic Galaxi and had a good time. Nice seeing some manual brakes still in action and the operators pushing the trains through the station. We then hit up a few flat rides situated over the water and the sky ride to the front of the park. Took a quick spin on the “Den of Lost Thieves”; typical shooting dark ride. Only thing worth mentioning is the maximum weight per car is only 350lbs. We then searched for some food and went to Dog N’ Suds for some hot dogs.
For our last new coaster of the day we hit up Tig’rr Coaster. Once again, a fun ride; I forgot how fun those Schwarzkopf rides are. They were running two of the four trains so the wait was about 10 minutes. After that we hit up a few more flat rides, grabbed a snack and head back to Steel Hawg. The line was about 30 minutes long and with only 45 minutes until the park closed we decided to ride Cornball Express again and head home. Sadly, Lost Coaster of Superstition Mountain was closed all evening. It looks like a fun ride!
Ratings, in comparison to the other 120+ coasters and 20 parks I have visited. I am fairly stingy with ratings, your typical ride/park is only getting a 5, it needs to be extraordinary to get a 9 or 10.
Cornball Express: 6
Hoosier Hurricane: 5
Steel Hawg: 7
Tig’rr Coaster: 4
And onto the pictures!
The park is situated beautifully on a peninsula
Steel Hawg rounding the final corner
Steel Hawg Train
Steel Hawg on 111 degree drop
Steel Hawg from a distance
Cornball Express's lift towards the right and Hoosier Hurricane's life to the left
Galaxi tucked between water slides
Flat rides over the water
Hoosier Hurricane going down first drop
Lost Coaster of Superstition Mountain
Lost Coaster of Superstition Mountain, looks like such a fun ride!
Lost Coaster of Superstition Mountain, interesting trains
Tig'rr Coaster, it sits over a restaurant
Steel Hawg at dusk
Ferris Wheel at night
Park at night