Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby Skycoastin Steve » Thu Jun 07, 2012 9:25 am

Hello again, everyone! We have finally reached Hersheypark for Skyrush's opening day. I'm sure by now you've all read various rider accounts of Skyrush, and I'm sure several of you have already ridden it. So what did I think of it? Let me put it this way. On a scale of 1 to 10, it ranks at about OMFGWTF. It had INSANE airtime, maybe the best airtime of any coaster I've ever been on (yes, even more than El Toro). It was incredibly smooth (I didn't get any rattling that some people are speaking of, I think they were still vibrating from riding Fahrenheit and thought that Skyrush was doing it), and while the lap bars did get rather tight on both rides, it was nowhere near as bad as Bizarro's lap bars (which are the standard setters for horrible lap bars). As far as steel rankings go, it only came in behind MF and 305 on my list (shut up about MF, it'll never not be #1 on my steel list).

As for the rest of HP, I can only shake my head in utter disbelief. They easily had the worst operations staff I've ever seen at a non-Six Flags park, and they were dangerously close to crossing the SFNE/La Ronde threshold for shittiness. It was that bad. Slow, uninterested ride ops, idiotic procedures (like the wait till the station empties of every last living soul before opening the gates for the next train, although that's nothing new), zero ability to adapt to situations like guests being too large for restraints (we watched as the Roller Soaker crew took probably 5 minutes to figure out what to do when someone was too big). There was also a time when SDL, Wildcat, Lightning Racer, Roller Soaker, and Sidewinder were all not operating. So at that point, 5 of their 12 coasters were closed on what was easily the most crowded day they've probably had in a while. It's a good thing HP has rides like Skyrush, Storm Runner, and Lightning Racer that are good enough to get me to come back. Because if they didn't, I can guarantee it would take another new ride to get me to go back.

Anyway, back to the good stuff. I really hope we start seeing more of these Intamin "wing" coasters in the States. I hope it doesn't turn out to be like El Toro where it's still the only one of its kind in the country 5 or 6 years down the road. Now on to the pictures!
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As we arrived to Hersheypark in the morning, I noticed a sign for Fast Lane. BOYCOTT!!!!!!
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This is what the crowd at the front gate looked like an hour prior to opening. It's safe to say people were excited about the new ride.
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Time to wait!
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A look at SDL's new trains. We didn't get to ride it. When it was actually open, the line was pretty bad, so we just skipped it.
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Obligatory ride sign photo.
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I think this was the 2nd train of the day. They were dispatching at about an average of four minutes per train (thanks to the worst station design in the universe).
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The staircase on the left is the line for the front row. No thanks.
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I always like when coaster construction doesn't infringe on nature like this. They trimmed the tree down a bit, but didn't have to rip it out.
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For some perspective, our wait started between the last two trees on the right, and we ended up waiting just short of 90 minutes. By the time we got off the ride, the line was another 50 yards or so down the sidewalk.
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Worst. Station. Ever.
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Crazy airtime in the back!
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Crazy airtime everywhere!
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I love the fact that they built the walkway under the ride, makes for great photo opportunities!
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The fountains were a nice touch, too.
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Fantastic first drop.
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Lots of twisties!
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The mini airtime hill at the end had probably the strongest moment of airtime I can remember on any ride. AND it's trimmed.
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And here we have a perfect example of how Hersheypark has ZERO clue when it comes to capacity or efficiency. NINE empty seats on the new coaster when the line is over two hours long.
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Current computer background.
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I always like a good silhouette pic.
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Skyrush was so good, it knocked someone's socks off!
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No seriously, these socks flew off someone's feet and landed in the landscaping below. This time it really IS a true story!
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The other fountain.
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You can ride the dam coaster after waiting in the dam line and climbing the dam stairs to the dam station and sitting in your dam seat.
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The pull out of the first drop was pretty intense. So intense that when riding in the back right seat on my first ride, I got bent sideways over the side of the train and just about broke every rib in my body. Lesson learned: HANG ON.
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I particularly like this picture. And YES, IT IS A STENGEL DIVE. Debate over.
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I also really like this picture, but you can see the abundance of empty seats..........again.
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All in all, great effing ride.
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I couldn't give Skyrush just one stamp, so it got multiple stamps of approval!
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HOWEVER! The Stamp Nazi did NOT approve of Hersheypark on this trip. Better luck next time.
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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby Real » Thu Jun 07, 2012 10:23 am

Why did everyone look happy? Were they actually enjoying the ride? All i hear is all the bitching about "its so painful". Haha

Good report. Does look like a heck of a machine.

Also, you mean to tell me that 8+ empty seats hurts capacity? :lmao:

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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby jynx242 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:02 am

Thanks for posting Steve! As always, I get a giggle out of your reports!
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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby Hilltopper39 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:09 am

It really is a beautiful installation. Does that path under the coaster go anywhere, or is it just a big lop/dead end? I know that wasn't there when I was at Hershey last and I'm just curious if it ties in to the main entrance somewhere.

The Ride Logo sign looks like it is made out of a football goal post.

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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby willh51 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:15 am

1/4 of a train empty? Nah, I bet that doesn't make the line move slowly.
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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby adavis » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:55 am

Love the pictures. The comment about the almost getting torn to shreds on the first drop was right on for me as well. The whole ride was intense-possibly my new favorite over Maverick-but that part was an "oh shit" moment, if ever there was one.

On a side note, odd how many people were happy on the ride. If you believed the Interwebz, you'd know that most were immobilized for days afterwords.

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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby Skycoastin Steve » Thu Jun 07, 2012 12:12 pm

Hilltopper39 wrote:It really is a beautiful installation. Does that path under the coaster go anywhere, or is it just a big lop/dead end? I know that wasn't there when I was at Hershey last and I'm just curious if it ties in to the main entrance somewhere.

Yep, when you go through the main entrance, the path starts just to the right of the main midway and connects directly to the start of the Skyrush queue. It's a HUGE relief for what could have been a pretty ugly stampede down into Comet Hollow on a daily basis. So at least they got that right.

adavis wrote:Love the pictures. The comment about the almost getting torn to shreds on the first drop was right on for me as well. The whole ride was intense-possibly my new favorite over Maverick-but that part was an "oh poo-poo" moment, if ever there was one.

On a side note, odd how many people were happy on the ride. If you believed the Interwebz, you'd know that most were immobilized for days afterwords.

Yeah, I saw nothing but happy faces that day. I will say, I pulled a muscle in my side trying to sit back up when I was bent over the side of the train, which was sore for a few days, but at least it wasn't my thighs! :lol:
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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby amy_mel » Thu Jun 07, 2012 12:20 pm

It really blows my mind that they are sending trains out with that many empty seats while the line is over even a half hour wait. I can see one, maybe two, but NINE! That's ridiculous on all levels. Seems to me like the ops just don't care to put in the effort to do their job and fill them. It looked like a whole row was empty in one of the pics!

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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby eddie200330 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 12:29 pm

amy_mel wrote:It really blows my mind that they are sending trains out with that many empty seats while the line is over even a half hour wait. I can see one, maybe two, but NINE! That's ridiculous on all levels. Seems to me like the ops just don't care to put in the effort to do their job and fill them. It looked like a whole row was empty in one of the pics!


One would think that with the reported slow dispatch times they were making an effort to fill the train all the way. Guess not.........
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Re: Skycoastin' Steve's 2012 Season Extravaganza!!

Postby Meteornotes » Thu Jun 07, 2012 12:33 pm

Nice report and pictures. Amazed you survived what everyone else is calling a death machine of leg severing hell. Or are perhaps people overreacting? Can't imagine that having on the internet...

I have nothing but my own observations to back this up, but to me the drop in quality of ride operations happened at about the same time the water park was installed. It proved to be so popular that people will flock to Hersheypark no matter how bad the operations and food are (and yes, I think Hersheypark has absolutely horrible food). You'd think they'd want to have decent operations, especially on their new coaster. Nine empty seats is really, really bad.

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