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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby coasterbill » Fri Jan 06, 2017 10:56 am

Montreal Part 4 is here featuring Poutine, Beer, Bobsleds, Arrows, Jesus and Comets! Murrica! Um… I mean… Canada! Now that it’s the offseason I finally have some motivation (AKA nothing better to do) so yes, this is real. Two reports in two days. New Year, New Me!

We woke up on Monday and checked out of the Dolphin hotel or whatever and decided to head back into the city to check out a few more things before we finally headed back to America and braved the insufferably long line to cross the border.

We didn’t really have a plan (do we ever?) so I woke up and started googling and eventually stumbled across Mount Royal, a mountain (really more of a hill) on the edge of the city that offers great views of the skyline and some nice walking and biking trails. After we finally parked our car (which wasn’t easy since the automated meters had no English option so we were typing everything it said into Google Translate like a bunch of morons) we headed to the overlook to take in the views.

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View from the top

At the overlook there’s a large outdoor area as well as a huge chalet (with a very impressive interior) featuring restrooms and a small gift shop. The chalet is apparently used for weddings and large gatherings for people who are rich as hell. lol

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The observation area

If you haven’t been to Mount Royal, it’s worth a trip. It’s a nice walk and a relatively cheap way to spend a few hours. The lookout is only a few tenths of a mile… I mean… kilometer… I mean… whatever it’s like a 2 minute walk from the parking lot so no actual stamina is required for the walk.

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I love the view... but I wish there was a way we could make it more "Canadian"


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There we go!

The croix du mont-royal requires some walking but it’s also kind of underwhelming. The one nice thing is that the walk from the overlook to the croix du mont-royal is a complete loop so it’s an interesting walk in the woods on wide, well-traveled paths.

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The big cross was exactly as advertised... it was big... and it was a cross

We’re Americans, so after our mild exercise we decided it was time to completely ruin all of our hard work and find some Poutine. For those unfamiliar with Poutine, it’s basically Canada’s attempt to “out-America” America. It consists of a bed of French fries topped with gravy and cheese curds and no visit to Montreal is complete without eating it. We’d been seeing poutine places for days but we didn’t want just any poutine. We didn’t want poutine from the tourist traps in the Old Port or Old Montreal and we sure as hell didn’t want to eat it at La Ronde (just thinking about that gives me the sh*ts… and then we’d have to use a La Ronde bathroom and… no… just no). PS: You see that last sentence? That’s why my trip reports never make the front page of TPR and for the record I understand entirely and am completely at peace with that. lol

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Before we leave... a moment of silence for the Montreal Expos

Anyway, after extensive research we realized that we had to leave the touristy areas of the city and head over to La Banquise in the middle of the city. It seems to be universally accepted that La Banquise has the best poutine in the city, and they’re open 24/7 because they claim that poutine is a favorite of people who stumble out of bars hammered at closing time or get stoned out of their minds and find themselves with a case of the munchies. After reading this we decided that this was the only poutine place we would accept and we started our trek to La Banquise.

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Due to the American political climate during our visit, we figured we'd do some contingency planning. lol

They offer 30 different kinds of poutine, all featuring the fries, cheese curds and gravy but offering additional toppings like sliced up hot dogs, bacon, steak, sour cream, guac or even tomatoes if you like to pretend that your poutine is good for you. Brit went with the standard poutine but being the glutton that I am I had them load it up with hot dog slices because it seemed like the most ridiculous option they had and I was going all in.

Ho…ly…sh*t. La Banquise changed my life. This stuff is ridiculous… it was so good I had the urge to go back to Mount Royal and visit the croix du mont-royal because I felt as if I had just found Jesus at the bottom of a pile of fries, hot dogs and gravy. Seriously guys… if you went to Montreal and you only went to La Ronde just smack yourself in the face. Right now… hard. What the hell? Now go sit in the corner and think about what you’ve done.

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Murrica! Only it's not!

Anyway after we finished our Poutine and I felt sufficiently ashamed of myself for eating it we decided to get in the car and give ourselves a few hours to digest. As we approached the border crossing we were greeted with signs warning us of the 60 minute wait to cross but at the last minute we found a small border crossing a few miles away with a 5 minute wait! Score! We immediately veered off at the last exit in Canada and headed over.

This is weird, but I always get slightly nervous at border crossings when we head into Canada with this dumb and completely irrational “oh I hope they let us in” mentality but when heading back to America I don’t give a single sh*t. “Oh I can’t come back? Well f*ck you then. I’m going back to Montreal to drink beer and eat Poutine. Poor me”.

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The obligatory "We're in 2 Countries at Once" shot because we're insufferable morons

Sadly for us (and many others I’m sure) they let us back into America with ease. While we originally intended to head straight home we realized that with all the time we saved we had time for one more pit stop, and we knew exactly where we were headed... Lake George! That’s right! Being gluttons for punishment we decided that we should visit another bastard child of the Six Flags chain because visiting one terrible park that weekend just wouldn’t have been enough.

By the time we got to the exit, we realized we still had a few hours to kill so we planned to spend about an hour at Great Escape and then head into Lake George to have dinner on the lake. I’ll say this for Great Escape, while the park does suck it has nothing on La Ronde. The front of the park is actually really nice and it almost doesn’t feel like a Six Flags park. To be fair, this park as a whole is pretty nice. The main issue I have with this place is the horrendous operations where 1 train operations and 7-10 minute dispatch times are a normal occurrence but crowds were so light that this wasn’t really an issue.

Because I’m me, the first stop was Desperado Plunge. I have to say, for Six Flags this is a pretty good flume. Most of the time it just sort of meanders around a dirt field but the theming right before the drop was unexpected and impressive. It was also nice to see that unlike Great Adventure, they didn’t have an asinine grouping policy on their flume.

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Flumin' it up. By the way, the Great Escape pictures all have us in them for some reason so you'll be subjected to my ugly mug from here on out. I apologize in advance.

After the flume we decided to head back to Comet which was running 2 trains and had no wait at all. We rode near the back and as usual we had a great ride on it. I always thought this ride was a little overrated, but it’s easily the gem of Great Escape and while it doesn’t have a ton of airtime it’s still a really fun coaster.

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Who doesn't love Comet?

When we pulled back into the station and thought of riding again, but on our way to Comet we noticed that for the first time in history, Alpine Bobsled was a walk-on and we couldn’t possibly pass up the opportunity to take a ride. Somehow we walked right on to our sled in the front row and were treated to a super fun old school bobsled ride. While I know it may not be long for this world, I always liked this ride and I would easily consider it to be the second best coaster in the park pretty much by default. After our bobsled ride we decided to head out of the park, pretty proud of ourselves for managing to work in a ride on Desperado Plunge, Comet and the Bobsled all within an hour.

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The Canadian Bobsled! How fitting!

We weren’t ready to head home quite yet so we made one last stop in Lake George village to watch the sunset over the lake with some drinks in hand and some fresh steamers at a local restaurant with great food but service that would make La Ronde proud. I can’t complain too much with a view like that though…

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Cheers to a great weekend!

Up next: The long awaited Jersey-Shore-Credit-Whore-Tour-2016-Ft.-Boldikus,-Alcohol-and-The-World's-Greatest-Log-Flume-Watch-The-F**King-Tram-Car-Please-You-Drunk-A**hole Trip Report ®

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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby Canobie Coaster » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:13 am

Nice update on Great Escape! I agree with you on their operations being awful with the exception of the Comet. While all their other coasters run one train with a slow staff or have a painfully low capacity (Bobsled), the Comet rarely stacks and runs two trains. I love that coaster a lot and always get airtime from start to finish. I'm amazed at how well the park has maintained it over the years having seen the state of several other woodies in the chain.

As for the Bobsled, it's my favorite steel one and it'd be a shame to see it go since it's the only other really good coaster the park has. While it has seemingly been on the chopping block forever, it keeps on surviving another year.
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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby boldikus » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:14 am

:nina: :nina: So good.

coasterbill wrote:We didn’t want poutine from the tourist traps in the Old Port or Old Montreal and we sure as hell didn’t want to eat it at La Ronde (just thinking about that gives me the sh*ts… and then we’d have to use a La Ronde bathroom and… no… just no). PS: You see that last sentence? That’s why my trip reports never make the front page of TPR and for the record I understand entirely and am completely at peace with that. lol


Best part.

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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby ytterbiumanalyst » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:16 am

This is a great report! My brother went to Montreal (and not La Ronde) a few years ago and had similarly great things to say about it. Glad to see you really got to see the city.

We went to Canada on our honeymoon, and yeah, poutine is one of those things that can be either awesome or terrible depending on who's making it. The place we found that was the best was an English-style pub in Winnepeg called Toad in the Hole. They also served a large selection of Canadian craft beers, which is a big thing around there.

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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby michaellynn4 » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:32 am

Awesome report, as always!!!
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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby Philrad71 » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:45 am

boldikus wrote::nina: :nina: So good.

coasterbill wrote:We didn’t want poutine from the tourist traps in the Old Port or Old Montreal and we sure as hell didn’t want to eat it at La Ronde (just thinking about that gives me the sh*ts… and then we’d have to use a La Ronde bathroom and… no… just no). PS: You see that last sentence? That’s why my trip reports never make the front page of TPR and for the record I understand entirely and am completely at peace with that. lol


Best part.


I don't know...this one is pretty close:

This is weird, but I always get slightly nervous at border crossings when we head into Canada with this dumb and completely irrational “oh I hope they let us in” mentality but when heading back to America I don’t give a single sh*t. “Oh I can’t come back? Well f*ck you then. I’m going back to Montreal to drink beer and eat Poutine. Poor me”.
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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby coasterbill » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:48 pm

:lol: thanks guys!

Canobie Coaster wrote:As for the Bobsled, it's my favorite steel one and it'd be a shame to see it go since it's the only other really good coaster the park has. While it has seemingly been on the chopping block forever, it keeps on surviving another year.


I agree with this completely. I'd hate to see them remove that ride just because of how weak their other offerings are.

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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby larrygator » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:06 pm

The feet earrings are a nice touch!
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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby coasterbill » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:42 am

:lol: :lol: :lol:

I don't know how I never noticed that.

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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Postby boldikus » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:52 am

Omg Brits growing an earfoot. Somebody better take a look at that! :lmao:

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