Photo TR: Chuck Does It Scandi Style

TPR's 2009 Scandinavian Tour--UPDATE: Linnanmaki
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Postby larrygator » Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:11 pm

I still think we should have kept TPDave in the TP Spinning Net a little bit longer.
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Postby cfc » Mon Jul 20, 2009 5:27 pm

Chapter 8: A Case of Norwegian Deja Vu--Tusenfryd

Have you ever had the feeling that you've been someplace before--particularly if you have been someplace before?

OK, so there's nothing "supernatural" about this. I visited Tusenfryd as part of the add-on to TPR's 2006 U.K. Trip. Nothing to call Ghost Hunters about here.

I was looking forward to visiting Tusenfryd again. The park's location is beautiful. It looks like it should be part of a ski resort with its beautiful mountains (and rather steep paths). Heck, it was the only park in '06 that had a t-shirt in my size, too. ;)

I enjoyed the place in 2006, and I liked it in 2009--with two minor bummers in the form of closed attractions. There used to be a very good multimedia show about the Vikings there that would fit in perfectly at Epcot, and a rather cheesy, but fun, haunted walkthrough; alas, both are now closed (although the old Viking theatre can be rented out for group banquets).

But, no matter. Tusenfryd still had two of my favorite coasters from 2006:

Speed Monster--I prefer this style of Intamin launched coaster to the one-trick ponies like Kingda Ka and Stealth. This one may not climb to great heights, but it has quite a few more tricks and is, in my opinion, a much more complete ride than the big "high hats."

Thunder Coaster--This Vekoma woodie is still a lot of fun (although not as insane as it was on that rainy day when I first rode it back in 2006). A good, solid, twisty ride with a fair amount of airtime.

Teeny Weeny--The world's smallest coaster (or so the park claims). Didn't ride it this time, but I did in '06 (doubt that it's changed much).

Loopen--And here's the other extreme of Vekoma, a painful "loopscrew." I passed on it this time--got the credit in 2006). Still, I do prefer it to Alton's old Corkscrew.

There are plenty of flats for those who like to be shaken, stirred, flipped, and flopped, not to mention a "Super Splash" ride. My thanks to Tusenfryd for a very good day.

Off to Tusenfryd!
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Tusenfryd is brought to you by Bacon Boy! 'Cause, let's face it--guys like bacon in all its forms! Our pigs die with a big, fat grin on their faces!
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Another day, another ferry ride--this time to Sweden.
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We killed some time with a friendly game of Texas Hold'em with M&Ms for stakes. This is Anth, better known as "Balls" for his bold bluffs.
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"Anth has the poker face, but I have all the M&Ms."
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Fjord? But wouldn't you really rather have a Buick?
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"Hi there! I'm Speed Monster! Welcome to Tusenfryd!"
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You know, there's something about the sun that brings out the wild side of Hanno.
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Kristin doesn't speak Norwegian; fortunately, fun is a universal language.
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This is the Norwegian version of Parque Espana's "Magic Escalator Ride." This place is so hilly that you have to take this ride to get from the main entrance to the park itself.
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First stop, Speed Monster. ("Zoom-zoom?" Where's that creepy little kid from the Nissan commercials?)
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Faster than a speeding bullet! (If the bullet is thrown as opposed to "fired.")
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More powerful than a locomotive! (I have no empirical evidence to back up this claim.)
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Able to leap tall park entrances at a single bound! (OK, here we have photographic evidence.)
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Yeah, Kinda Krap (er, I mean Kingda Ka) is taller, . . .
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. . . but it can't do this.
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Yes, Stealth is bigger, . . .
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. . . but can it do this? (Retort from Stealth: "Yeah, I could--I just don't want to!")
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Hey, kids--wanna go faster?
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And now a frightfully technical backstage tour.
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Here we have some recovered items. I believe the technical term is "somebody's lost crap."
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OK, this has something to do with making the ride "go" (as the technicians say).
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As does this.
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This, I believe, is called "track." (Yeah, I suck at technical jargon.)
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Erik says, "OK, now that we have ridden the Intamin, it is time for the Vekoma!"
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"Before we ride Loopen, I'd like to lead us in a little prayer."
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"Oh, Lord, do not forsake us . . .
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. . . for we know not what we do! Amen."
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"Aghh! The prayers do nothing!"
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More lost lambs being led to the slaughter.
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Spot the Vekoma employee in this group. (I kid Erik and Vekoma--they've made a number of rides I like, too, such as Everest, RnR, and Kumali.)
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Postby cfc » Mon Jul 20, 2009 6:03 pm

The makers of Bacon Boy products would like to remind you that bacon is not just for breakfast anymore. Why, you can use it to lube tank tracks, too!

And now, back to Tusenfryd, which smells nothing like bacon--but we like it, anyway!
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"OK, is this Danish, Swedish, or Norwegian money?"
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This is a surprising little "swinging ship." It actually alternates between a less-intense and more-intense setting (the latter is surprisingly foreceful).
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Yeah, this is a pretty hilly place. You get quite a workout walking around Tusenfryd,
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"2:53 pm, July 15, 2010. The arm-wrestling machine becomes self-aware. It commences Judgment Day."
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Sigh! No more Viking show.
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Rest in Peace, Vikingtoktet!
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Don't be sad, guys. There's always . . .
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. . .Teeny Weeny!
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Teeny Weeny is surprisingly roomy. Yes, the trains are actually more roomy than on some full-sized coasters in Japan! And, hey, they just look cool.
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"Yay! Bestest ride ever!"
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Hmm--looks like a shortcut to Camp Crystal Lake, or something.
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Low bridge, Erik.
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After a tough hike, it's always nice to enjoy a refreshing beverage.
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Spin Spider is one huge frisbee.
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I was content to watch this one.
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Time to swing, . . .
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. . . spin, . . .
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. . . and spew.
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This is more my speed.
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Hmm--no creaking doors or howling wolves or random dummies sitting up in coffins today.
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Hello? Gomez? Morticia? You home?
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All those Terror Balls just going to waste.
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I really like this ride.
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Unfortunately, I really failed at taking pictures of it this year.
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But here's a pic from '06 with some Norwegian kid flipping me off as he rides by.
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Thanks for a fun day, Tusenfryd! Eerie! I feel like I've been here before, too! (That's because I have.)
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Postby Moose » Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:52 am

Great update again chuck. MMMMM bacon.

Spin Spider was amazingly fightening yet awesome at the same time. I wish the ONE RIDE OP FOR A BRAND NEW RIDE would have tried harder to staple me.

Speaking of ONE RIDE OP FOR A BRAND NEW RIDE. That was my complaint of this place. Staffing. Do they really need three girls chatting at the Vekoma when two would suffice (since they were hardly working anyway) when their brand new ride only has one girl to check all 40 (50?) restraints and then start the ride?

Bah.

The vekoma wasn't nearly as bad as it could have been. It had one really wonky moment on the lift and then it was decent. We were told by someone to ride in the back and it'd be better... and they were right!

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Postby cfc » Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:21 am

^I had such a lousy ride on Loopen back in '06 that I didn't bother with it this year. Maybe I was sitting in the wrong seat.

The Spin Spider line was outrageously long, as was the Super Splash line (one-boat operation).

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Postby ginzo » Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:31 am

cfc wrote:The Spin Spider line was outrageously long, as was the Super Splash line (one-boat operation).


Fortunately, we had Ivan to cool us down with his squirt gun while in that very long Super Splash line.

Yes, operations/staffing were the one weak point of an otherwise very nice and unique park. I waited like 20 minutes to buy just one popsicle at the end of the day.

I wonder if the laid back operations have anything to do with being the only major park in a very wealthy country. Or are they just a laid back culture? Guess I'll have to go back to Norway some day and investigate further. They certainly have enough natural beauty to draw me right back.
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Postby larrygator » Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:01 pm

^Don't forget the wait we had to get into the park.

Operations were far better in 2006, I think this problem falls more on the new owners than anything else.
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Postby thrillerman1 » Tue Jul 21, 2009 7:02 pm

I had jokingly been referring to the park as Tusen-Q all day because of the slow operations.

I'm still wondering what the female ride op at Loopen was thinking with the queue gate and the way she was making everyone squeeze around, over, and under each other through the line to get to the back. It seemed all she had to do was swing the gate shut and start a new queue. Did she know something we didn't?

Overall it's a nice park that could use a lot more operations help.

Edit to add...great update Chuck!

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Postby cfc » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:27 pm

Thanks for the comments and kind words, everyone.

Chapter 9: A Case of Swedish Deja Vu--Liseberg

Liseberg is one of my favorite parks anywhere, and why not? After all, my favorite wooden roller coaster is still there, rumblin' on, along with my favorite haunted walkthrough. Pile on the park's other attractions, good food, friendly staff, and beautiful setting, and it's no surprise that Robb and Elissa were saying that every TPR trip, no matter where it goes, should have Liseberg as an add-on. I was really looking forward to seeing this park again.

This is another one of those urban parks that they do so well in the Scandinavian countries--kind of like Tivoli Gardens with a big hill in the middle of it. As for the four coasters, there isn't a bad one in the bunch:

Balder--I was wondering if the park's 70-degree-drop woodie would regain the number-one ranking I gave it back in 2006. It did. There is nothing but airtime from beginning to end. This ride doesn't let up, yet it's amazingly re-rideable. As much as I like El Toro, Colossos, and the Voyage, if I ride them three times in sucession, I usually get a bit of a headache. Not so with Balder. I really could ride this coaster all day.

Lisebergbanan--This is supposed to be Anton Schwarzkopf's personal favorite out of all the rides he designed, and I can understand why. It's not an airtime machine, but you can't beat this ride's hillside setting--it's an excellent terrain coaster. But it does have those patented, kneecap-busting Schwarzkopf "broms" (or "brakes"). Great views of the park and city and lots of fun.

Kanonen--Another good Intamin launcher with plenty of twists and turns. It does seem to have barely enough momentum to complete its course, though.

Rabalder--This is the park's new kiddie coaster. It's an improvement over the old "dragon coaster" that used to be here, and like many kiddie coasters in European parks, it's nicely themed and landscaped.

If you're into dizziness and disorientation, there are plenty of flat rides, and the log flume can be a real soaker (the rapids ride not as much). The Hotell Gasten walkthrough is not to be missed--this is a Disney/Universal-level attraction with plenty of creepy atmosphere and creepier scareactors.

Here's a look at a great day at Liseberg. My thanks to the staff and management there for treating us so well--and to Robb and Elissa for setting all this up.
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Ah, Liseberg! Home of Balder, Hotell Gasten, and their own personal "Walk of Fame."
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Yes, many international superstars are honored here, such as the late Michael Jackson, . . .
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. . . ABBA, and . . .
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. . .Sven-Bertil Taube. (Sven-Bertil Taube? Yes, my ignorance of Swedish pop culture is showing.)
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After a few words of welcome, . . .
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. . . we were off to a rather familiar little place--the wee house under Balder.
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Let's see . . . Balder hat, green bunny ears, beer . . . yeah, I'm good.
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Looks like Hanno's had a few beers already.
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OK, TPR people--start writin' and hammerin'. This ride ain't gonna finish itself.
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Yes, Kristin--we actually want you to write on the coaster.
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Here we are, behind the scenes at the Big Mike Road Show, . . .
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. . . which seems to have developed a "technical problem."
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My childish scrawl and nail from '06 are still here.
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And here's my 2009 childish scrawl and nail for future generations.
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Those howls and screams you hear are not just those of a man who has crushed his thumb with a hammer.
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No, they are the ecstatic moans and howls of an artiste!
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With all the hammering and drinking concluded, it was time for ERT.
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Ryan's whole life has been leading up to this! All will be meaningless after Balder! (OK, this is a bit of an exaggeration.)
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70 DEGREES!
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Let's hear it for the blue train, folks!
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No "blues" on this ride, though.
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But let's give the red train its due.
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Yes, red coaster trains need love, too.
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Balder also throws in a few laterals just for the hell of it.
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But it never forgets that it's all about the air.
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Is it time to go back to Liseberg yet? More to come.
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Postby cfc » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:56 pm

Some of you may have noticed that there's no sponsor for this chapter. Yes, this space is available--for a nominal fee, of course.

Back to Liseberg.
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As we did in '06, we had ERT on Kanonen, too.
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Happy, happy, happy!
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Joy, joy, joy!
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I think I can, I think I can, I think I can!
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I thought I could, I thought I could, I thought I could!
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Kanonen is comin' down the track . . .
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"Aw, Chuck looks much prettier after Kristin takes a picture of him with her phone."
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Time for Lisebergan . . . er . . . the "banana" coaster.
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The station looks like a, well, train station.
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Time to experience the Power of the Schwarz!
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Hmm--so powerful that I'm having problems getting decent pictures of it.
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"I see that your Schwarz is nearly as big as mine."
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The dark side of the Schwarz!
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Next up was a backstage tour of Hotell Gasten with one of the attraction's actors. This was a major highlight of the whole trip. Even with the worklights on, Hotell Gasten looks pretty creepy.
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Unfortunately, if I showed you anymore, I'd have to kill you. Sorry.
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"Give me your poor, your tired, your huddled masses . . . or just get me a corn dog."
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After Gasten, everybody went to snag the kiddie credit.
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Yes, it's a TPR/green-bunny-ears takeover.
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"Look at those people in line! They're scary!"
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You have no idea.
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"Yeah--I thought I was a freak! But I'm normal compared to these coaster geeks." Well, off to take a shower. I'll finish posting the rest later.
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