Glad you had a great time and loved Lightning Rod! Rikki and I were both very impressed with the park when we visited last year. That said...
robbalvey wrote:The only real constructive feedback I can give for the ride was in the operations department falling under the "ride rules" category. We had one of our riders who was RIGHT on the edge of not being able to to ride. The first time he rode, he was able to get the bar down and he fit just fine. The second time he rode, he was having more trouble so I went to push down on his bar to help just like I would on every other ride in the world, and this angry older ride op named "Al" came over and shouted at me "DO NOT TOUCH THAT BAR HE HAS TO DO IT ON HIS OWN IF YOU TOUCH THAT BAR AGAIN YOU ARE NOT RIDING THIS COASTER ANYMORE!!!!!"
I'm sorry what? Excuse me? This ride is already difficult enough for people to get on and you want to make it even HARDER for people? No, sorry, that's not cool with me. I cannot think of another ride anywhere in the world where you couldn't give the guy next to you literally a "nudge" on the bar to make it down that TINY extra to get the green light especially when the guy JUST RODE the coaster. The ride ops would NOT help anyone push the bar down on Lightning Rod, yet they had no problem pushing the bar down and helping on Thunderhead or Wild Eagle. This needs to be fixed, IMO.
I 100% agree with you. I, too, was one of those "on the edge" riders who, on my first three rides on Lightning Rod, managed to get the lap bar down by myself without issue. However, the fourth ride, I was having an issue getting the bar down enough for the sensors, and the ride ops just look at you as you struggle to push it down yourself. I was even scolded when I whacked it once with a closed fist in order for it to budge more, getting told I could only push with open palms.
Fortunately, I got it to go down that extra bit on my own, but it annoyed me. As you said, Robb, I can't think of another park anywhere that has this rule for any of their rides, so I can't think of any logical reason why they'd implement it. It artificially slows down operations and frankly, creates more embarrassing situations for guests that could otherwise be avoided. I know my weight issue is ultimately only my fault (and I'm dealing with it), and I totally get it if I can't ride safely because of my size, but the illogical policy essentially turned my situation into a spectacle as I kept pushing down while several ride ops just stared at me when at any other park in the world I'd get the extra nudge and everyone's happy.
Aside from that, the park is awesome! The cinnamon bread was delicious! If only there was a way to eat the cinnamon bread while riding Lightning Rod, then the place would be perfect...(though thoughts like that are probably part of my problem).