So even tho we knew Wonder Woman wasn't open yet, the spouse and I took a drive down to San Antonio this morning to spend a day in the park on the 2nd weekend of the 2018 season.
It is exactly 1 1/2 hours from our driveway to Fiesta's entrance, so perfect for a daytrip.
overall, we ended up spending ~4 hours in the park, and tho it was obvious they have some "opening kinks" still to work out, we had a great day.
The day started very overcast and drizzly in Austin, but we decided to go anyways, since we have the dining pass and figured we would just treat it as an excuse to get out of the house, and have lunch. The only thing we really wanted to ride was Poltergeist since we hadn't ridden it on our trips in Dec.
Tho it was still overcast by the time we got to San Antonio area, the drizzle stopped just outside of Austin. And after a few hours in the park, the sun did come out.
however, it was windy. . so windy that Poltergeist wasn't open
, and Iron Rattler shut down just after we arrived (it was running when we pulled into the parking lot, but by the time we got thru the gates, and around to that part of the park, they had halted operations). I completely understand that, especially since IR valleyed last weekend, so they don't want to chance that again. It was weird tho, since Scream and Skyscreamer were running.. I'd think those would go down for wind before the coasters would. . but no biggie.
1st thing we noticed when pulling into the parking lot is the fresh new paint on Goliath -- BRIGHT yellow, and DARK blue. . it really does look amazing. Tho weird that one support leg is missing the new paint (did they just forget that support?.. weird).
I had gotten an email from the park where they mentioned all the fresh paint and updates they were doing in the off season around the park, and that really showed on Goliath (tho strangely, the coaster mentioned in the email as getting a refresh, Poltergeist, still looked awful with peeling paint, rusty spots on the train/track, and just looking neglected. . . then again, I suppose it DOES fit with the themeing there. .LOL).
And after the sun came out later in the day, the wind actually died down and IR started back up (with an 1:40 minute wait, so we passed on it). .and Poltergeist opened too, with a 15 minute or so wait (since they were only running 1 train).
since Poltergeist was down when we first came in, we decided to head over to Wonder Woman and take some pics. The coaster is looking absolutely amazing, and cannot wait to try this guy out. They are working on the themeing and quite a few of the columns are in place at the entrance, and on the sides of the loading station.
However, there is still a *lot* of work left to do on the station, the exit ramp, and the gift shop building. . . In speaking with an operator while waiting to ride Fireball, I definitely was left with the impression that the bad weather we've been having in Texas in Jan/Feb (several cold fronts, rain), really impacted the construction of these aspects, and that's why they "missed" the planned opening yesterday on 3/3. The circuit is complete, and from what I could see, it LOOKED like the lift mechanism is in place. . they had a train (blue) on the track, and there were two people working on the car while we were there. . so it looks close, if not ready. but still at least a week or more needed for the station construction to complete (although it looks like a lot of work is in process of being done).
after the photos of Wonder Woman, we went over to Batman, and I gave it another try. This time knowing to pull the restraint as tightly as I could get it to go. That did it, and i loved the ride. Spinning *with* the car, instead of banging against the restraint every turn makes all the difference in the world. As much as I disliked Batman the prior time I rode it? really liked it this time, and it's on my list of must-ride when we go back to the park.
Since Nick won't ride Batman, we headed towards the boardwalk to get him on Fireball (but he chickened out and I rode that alone too), but he was willing to ride Pandemonium, so we hopped on that since it had a 5 minute wait. I've never had such a great ride on it, not only did we get decent spinning, but on some of the drops/hills, we ended up getting airtime. while spinning. Never had that before!
Again here tho, I thought of the email about Six Flags sprucing up on the off season. . not only is the funhouse queue not being used at all anymore (you come right off the boardwalk and into the loading station), but the funhouse door was open, and inside was a ton of construction buckets, ladders, and junk. . . not an impressive look. Also confusing was the large side of the "barn" where the paint had deteriorated enough that you can clearly see the "Big S".. which was part of the paint when the coaster was called "Tony Hawk's Big Spin". . . odd. Maybe they don't think it's a big deal, since the logo still has the skateboard guy on it?.. but it was odd.
Scooby Doo branding was completely gone, and just a sign out front saying they are building thrills. I asked a worker who happened to be walking by us if they had announced what was going in the spot, and he said they had not been told anything other than it will be a shooting dark ride still. hmm. . so who knows? maybe it will be the pirate theme that was in the surveys they sent out.
while walking by Scream, it had a super short line (not even one cycle), so I hopped on that while Nick took pictures, since he doesn't like heights.
We'd been in the park for a bit, so headed to the Sangerfest Hall to grab lunch, and as it was almost 1pm, it wasn't really crowded. No show going on (and there was actually a table on the stage.. so likely the daily shows in there just haven't started yet. . it IS only the 2nd weekend open), and the register lady was having a lot of trouble figuring out how to ring our meal so that the Dining pass worked. After a few moments of trying, and (getting a manager to come over and help her), she figured it out, but also comped us the drinks as a "sorry for making you wait" gift. Greatly appreciated!
the food was. . . . edible? I mean, wasn't the healthiest thing we could eat (Nick had a slice of pizza and cold french fries, and I had a Bacon/ranch/cheese dog with cheese tots), but hey, it filled us up and was on the dining plan. so s'all good.
I had asked Nick if he would ride Bugs Bunny Rapids with me, and tho he didn't want to get wet, he agreed to go on it (and of course, we got soaked. . LOL).
Ok, again, here's where it got weird. . the Bugs Bunny Rapids are themed to the cartoon "the singing sword". .so it's Bugs vs Yosemite Sam in a medieval theme. literally *every* scene (except for one) you pass in the long line, was missing the characters. there's the throne room, with empty throne, no Bugs. there's the dungeon, with no Sam chained up. there's the treasure room, with no body in it. . it was WEIRD. the TVs that show the cartoon thruout the queue were also all off.
but all the water effects (including the spitting dragon that follows the log, and Bugs/Sam fighting over the sword after the 1st drop) were all working, and looked great. I have to assume the figures had all be removed from the queue for refurbishment, but it was sad to see half-assed displays thruout the queue line.
it reminded me very much of Roadrunner Express. . which ALSO is missing all the Roadrunner/Wiley Coyote figures thruout that ride.
eh.. the flume ride was great tho, and the actual themeing of the flume itself remains one of the better flumes I've been on.
to try to dry off, I figured i'd hop on Skyscreamer, since the line was short. Yah. . here we encountered another "we just opened/training" issue.
the line WAS short. . it was only 3 cycles until I was riding. Nick waited for me on a bench.
3 cycles took TWENTY MINUTES. seriously. the cycle of the ride is about 90 seconds, but they were taking almost 7 minutes between cycles to load/unload. . it was nuts.
I felt terrible he had to wait for me, but at least it gave us both time to dry out
we had seen Iron Rattler start up, so we headed that way, planning that if the line was long, we'd ride the train. as noted above, since it had opened back up, the line was posting over an hour wait (gully washer also was posting a long line, I guess because it had gotten warmer once the sun came out. .but we had no desire to get completely soaked again). . so instead of the train, I suggested Roadrunner Express, as I know he'll ride that.
the line wasn't too bad (maybe 10 minutes) and we decided to try riding in the back seat, even tho it's a wheel seat. Not a bad ride at all, and felt much faster than i've noticed in the past. it really does haul A$$ in the back row!
it was past 3:30, and he was starting to get a bit antsy about heading home, since he wanted to watch the Nascar race (which they were showing in the bar there in Crackaxle Canyon. .but he didn't want to sit in a bar in a theme park.. LOL).. we we headed back towards Superman, to get the Johnny Rocket's shakes as our "snacks" on the meal plan.
oh, I should have mentioned, tho it wasn't super-crowded, a lot of the crowd that was there seemed to be school groups, all using vouchers, which made the food lines fairly long (and didn't help with the staffing/training issues as they were struggling to keep up with the groups of kids). . . . we had a group in front of us at Johnny Rockets, and that made the getting of shakes take about 15 minutes. No biggie, but just mentioning it.
the intention had been that we'll get the shakes and head out, but as we were walking thru Kidzopolis towards the front, that's when Poltergeist started cycling. . so since that had been our intended ride, we went over that way, got in line, and rode that before heading out.
I think they might have done something with the restraints in the off season? it was a *really* snug fit getting in and out of the cars. The restraints seemed the same, and the were comfortable, but the space between the seat and the front of the car just seemed very tight. There were also 2 "walks of shame" in the train we rode in, and in the cycle before someone had to get out as well (they were only running 1 car). So it makes me wonder if something adjusted during the downtime between seasons.
all in all, we were in the park just over 4 hours and had a good time.
ride count (all ridden once):
Bugs Bunny Whitewater Rapids (flume)
on to the pics!