Day 1 - Six Flags Discovery Kingdom.
The drive to the park was scenic, giving us views of the bay and surrounding landscape. It was a nice day as we pulled into the parking lot.
Oh my God - coasters - RUN!!!!!!
Hey! This is not a coaster, this is the parking lot tram! Calm down!
If you water your wood coaster, it will grow and get taller! (Seriously, with the low CA humidity I wondered how they kept the wood from drying out and spontaneously bursting into flames, and now I know.)
Robb, Elissa, and Mike lead the TPR crew into the park; KidTums hacks the Q-bot to get free HBO and Cinemax and unlimited rides.
The camel is thinking - "Oh, hell no - this fat guy is not getting a ride."
The SFDK people had a variety of animals out for us to see before heading into the arena where they tigers performed. We watched the tigers swim and do a few tricks before heading out to our first ERT session on Medusa.
Medusa is a fantastic ride, and it took me a few rides to realize it had seven inversions. I got plenty of rides during ERT (five or so), and then Mikel, my roommate, and I fired up the Gold Q-Bot and started racking up credits.
The second coaster of the day was this very long kiddie coaster. Mikel either gives the count or wishes for peace.
The kiddie coaster produced a very nice photo later in the day when I was standing outside the gate shooting Medusa and Roar, and I just happenned to catch this shot through the palm trees.
Medusa and V2 were my favorite rides at this park, and Roar was also very good, though rough in a few spots. If it had been a little smoother it would have been faster, and would have seriously kicked butt.
My favorite flat was Hammerhead, but Tasmanian Devil also proved to be a lot of fun.
Hammerhead was fun, despite the super-snug harnesses - when you are hanging upside down from them you don't mind snugness.
After a fairly good ride on the Top Spin, we got stuck on it for 5-10 minutes when it didn't stop in quite the right place. This was made all the more unpleasant by the self-stapling restraints.
I think Mikel and I had ridden all of the coasters by lunch, which was in one of the picnic groves. After lunch, door prizes and announcements, they brought out more animals.
"I am the cutest animal you will see on the whole trip. Bow before me. I SAID BOW!"
I took some other photos of animals in the main part of the park.
In one tank you could pet a small stingray. They're actually not dangerous at all.
DOLPHIN ATTACK! Oh wait - the trainer has fish.
What does the "D" stand for? Not sure.... hey, what's that in its beak?
Hey, those are feathers, and I think the penguin we saw at lunch is missing...
"D" must stand for Dangerous. Bad penguin. Don't look at me like that or I will peck you to death!
Are these sea lions?
Whatever they were, they didn't want to look at me or my camera.
I spy a Bay Area Bash attendee in this photo!
ERT later that night was on Roar, V2, and Tony Hawk. Here Mike Austin actually appears to like a ride, and he's smiling, too, something you don't see often.
Hey, I know those guys - they're from Kentucky, what the hell are they doing here?
Earlier in the day, while most of the group was off touring a factory that made some kind of candy or snack food, I was taking photos.
From just outside the main gate, I could see the stop and go traffic on the highway, and I decided that a photo of California traffic combined with a roller coaster was an appropriate photo for this trip.
From this spot I could get great shots of Roar and Medusa. Let's start off with Roar - a very good ride, and there were some nice photo ops from just outside the main gate.
Front row - "Raj, I love you." "Oh Sanjeev, I love you too! I thought this day would never come!"
The one guy looks like he really, really, really has to pee.
A variety of reactions to Roar's first drop
The faces in rows 4 and 5 are kind of interesting
Five kids, five different reactions
After another drop, the kids look happier
Bald guys love Roar!
Medusa is just too damn photogenic. I couldn't stop taking photos of people having a great time on this excellent ride. Here are a lot of photos from various angles.
First drop reactions
Front row - we're lovin it!
More hot corkscrewin' action
The fun resumes with a great quick drop out of the midcourse brakes
Row 1 - bliss, Row 2 - Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
More first drop fear
Out of the 2nd or 3rd inversion and the fun is just beginning
Write your own caption for this one, but be sure to use the phrase "moron with a camera" in it
Front row hair
Medusa is smooth and fun, and everyone in this photo is enjoying it
Check out the kid's face in the 2nd row
Look - Raj and Sanjeev, who just professed their love for each other in the first row of Roar, are now enjoying a front-row Medusa ride. How nice. I like the guy a few rows back on the right holding his sunglasses/head.
V2 is a great ride, and the 45-degree front spike with a twist is really fun.
Peekaboo, I see you!
More flying hair on V2
Looking straight up the back spike - nothing like floating about 100 feet off the ground - I wish it was taller!
Zero-G floaty fun
Her yellow shoes match the harnesses
I did not feel like getting soaked on this day, but many people did.
Father and son tear up the track
Mother and daughter are left in the dust
I see the logic of the mandatory boxes that lock, but I still don't like them, though I did find it convenient to stash my stuff in one for a couple of hours.
On another possibly unpleasant topic, some boomerang riders take their first plunge. This one wasn't that rough.
More really, really, really wet people - not an acceptable amount of wetness!
This ride was so bad I only took a couple of photos of it.
These riders head for the sky... and then the chiropractor.
Let's finish up with a great Tony Hawk ride, which was the scene of a massive soaking during ERT.
Proper riding technique!
Maybe my best hairtime photo of the trip!
Turns are fun
And finally - little Bobby and Tommy are in love!
At the end of the night, after a last V2 ride, a few of us headed quickly to the front gate and caught a tram. We got to the bus with 5 minutes to spare, thinking we would be some of the last on the bus before it left, as Robb said it would, precisely on time, and not a minute later.
We got on, and found we were the first two people back to the bus with the exception of Larry, the driver. The rest of the group arrived 15 minutes later! Of course by then we had already raided the snacks.
Next stop: Gilroy Gardens