Both of my park visits were planned the night before my visit and lasted for only 4 hours. I usually plan everything a few months or even a few years ahead.
Park 1: Happy Valley Tianjin.
I went to Beijing on November 10th for college interview and spent the night in our great capital. The tickets for the flight back to Guangzhou sold out so we had to fly from Tianjin the second day. That's when I remembered there is a Happy Valley park! Fjord Flying Dragon seemed to have very great review from last year's Mitch hawker poll so we decided to visit that place.
Me and my mom planned the park visit at around 9:30 PM and took the Beijing-Tianjin bullet train in the second day's morning. I was so excited that I could post the first Happy Valley Tianjin TR on TPR so we were rushing the whole way. We arrived at the park at 1:30pm due to some transportation issues and I immediately ran into the line of their El Loco. My mom is not a fan of hang time so she skipped it.
Crazy Bird review: The coaster was originally named Angry Bird, OCT probably had some copyright issue so they changed the English name. Crazy Bird is my first El Loco and I enjoyed it. I think it is a perfect family coaster, it looks intimidating but actually it is tame enough for the whole family to enjoy. First drop gives more of a hang time feeling than airtime, lateral G force is a bit much but that's probably the point of this design, final brake hits really hard that I saw an unprepared GP getting her chin hit into the lap bar. Overall it's a very great design and I can imagine how awesome the Vegas one would feel like! This is also my first time experiencing hang time on lap bar only coaster.
After two rides on Crazy Bird, we went to the main reason why we visited the park: Fjord Flying Dragon. The park was absolutely dead so we had to wait in line for 10 mins to wait for more riders as told by the ride op. What's the best thing to do on queue line(or basically any free time)? Browsing TPR forums! When I opened the page, Gutterflower's Happy Valley Tianjin TR was at the top place
Fjord Flying Dragon review: It is my mom's first wooden coaster and my 20th wooden coaster. I think this ride feels more like a rougher GCI coaster with super sharp transitions. PTC really doesn't work on this layout well enough, turns are rougher than a new coaster should be and the trains bounces around quite a lot. Straight sections are fine and smooth though. There are two twists that are way too sudden IMO, the quick transition after the second hill and the transition to the turnaround next to the station. Airtime is incredible for the first half but second half was affected by the high wind too much. For this layout I would say Timberliners would work better even though my Hades360 experience readjusted every bone and organ in my body. Among the three Gravity Group woodies I've been on, it is my favorite one simply because Fireball and Hades360 were too rough. Fjord Flying Dragon is a fun coaster, but world's top 10? I don't think so. I ranked it at my #5 spot after American Eagle. Try to avoid wheel seats and brace for sharp transitions for a smoother ride experience.
Then I went on the Christmas Tower thing which is a "drop tower" by Golden Horse. It's so clear that a 2-year-old can figure out it's a Tower of Terror knock-off. But Golden Horse used their magical power to make the copy of possibly the best drop ride in the world a kiddie dark ride that's even slower than the 30-year-old elevator at our local hospital. All things worked like a huge disaster, sound effect wasn't even on, noise of the hydraulic system is too much, wind effect takes 15 seconds to turn on, glass at the top window was partly broken, the cheap seat belts take the ride op 10 minutes to do safety check...
Members of RCD told me that the Mine Train is Golden Horse's first good ride and it is surprisingly the smoothest coaster at the park. How can I miss it? Expedition of Volcano is mostly in a very dark room with a short outdoor/indoor section and a helix wrapped around a volcano. I have to say, IT WAS SO FREAKIN' SMOOTH!! Golden Horse really did a good job on this custom Mine Train. They even put silent lift, magnetic brake etc on it (Yes Intamin started using those thing 10,000 years ago but this is a first for Chinese manufacturers) There are still some flaws on the design: the turns aren't exactly as even as those coasters by European and American manufacturers, the train design is very cheap and the switch track gives some bumping at the end of the ride. Hopefully they can start using the wheel bogies that push the guide wheels towards the track soon.
Happy Valley Tianjin is a nice park with a good ride collection. Their atmosphere is better than I expected and their Halloween celebration attracted a lot of visitors at night. November 11th is the Single Day for China so a lot of single people went to the park. This is part of the reasons why OCT kept their Halloween event till Single Day. The park was dead the afternoon but it started to get busy at around 5:00 PM. BUT, the park's remote location really prevented a lot of tourists from even getting interested in visiting there, OCT made no advertisement at the bullet train station or any public transportation. Happy Valley parks are famous for their low efficiency and Happy Valley Tianjin is no exception. They aren't taking on-ride photos at the station yet, but the employees don't seem to like or care about their jobs. The minute I walk into the park, I get the "Ride it or not is your choice, I don't give a crap about anything, I'm getting paid anyway" feeling. When I was at Fjord Flying Dragon, they were arranging seats and put everyone at the front of the train because high wind can cause valleying if the barycenter is further the back. I talked to a ride op when standing in line and asked for a non-wheels eat row before they arranged the line, she said I'm "crapping dog sh*t out of my mouth" because she never heard that wheel seats give rougher ride.
Enjoy the pictures, my phone was dying so I didn't take a lot of pictures like I did at Ocean Kingdom.