China 09/17 – Happy Valley Tianjin
I believe this was the hottest day of the trip. The bus to the park couldn’t make up it’s mind whether it was 38°C or 54°C. Then it broke down and we got abandoned at the side of the road for 20 minutes, not ideal.
Day 3 – Happy Valley Tianjin
Could be worse.
Mercifully half of this park is indoors, so there were at least moments I could save myself from bursting into flames.
Started strong with this Zamperla speedy coaster.
Then couldn’t wait any longer for the Gravity woodie.
Well this was absolutely brilliant. A near perfect amount of being thrown about in every direction. Not too rough, just violent enough to give you plenty to think about. Exactly how I like it.
I didn’t look into any of the wooden coasters on this trip in any detail, so didn’t know any of the layouts or their key features. This one definitely exceeded my expectations and is just full of both straight hills and twisty hills of all shapes and sizes that deliver a ton of fun.
Woodies and locals anecdote 1: After the first ride, a man ever so casually walks up to the staff and asks where there is a bin. She points behind and he ever so casually wanders over to it and proceeds to throw up into it. It certainly kicked his arse.
Disappointed that this tower ride was closed. I wanted it to be better than Mystery Castle.
Did the haunted walkthrough next to it instead and it was a vast improvement over the Beijing shambles. Back in business with the classic humour and not particularly scary-ness.
4D Xmas Adventure Ride with Santa getting up to all sorts of mischief is pretty good, as long as you notice the 3D is broken and take your glasses off again.
Back inside for a bit.
Ex-spite-dition of Volcano. Closed for the day.
I’ve lived through the Joyland Skyloop, so this is nothing in comparison, but I feel like the tale should to be shared.
They were running their El Loco with 3 cars. The station platform has space to hold 3 cars, but they are only able to onload and offload the front 2 cars.
If you are in the 2nd car that gets despatched you end up sitting in the ride, in the station, having completed your circuit, for the entirety of the following sequence:
Car 1 offloads people at the front of the station. These people clamber out and gather their belongings in the usual faffy fashion.
Car 2 offloads people at the front of the station. These people clamber out and gather their belongings in the usual faffy fashion.
As with most of China, you are prevented from leaving the station area until a check has been made by the staff that everyone is out of their train and has taken their items, which often ends in an awkward encounter if you’re out of the train in 5 seconds like a normal person and are left standing and staring at the staff for at least a minute waiting to leave.
8 people leave.
Open the gate for 4 people. Let them clamber across the 1st car, sort out their loose items, sit down, seatbelt on, seatbelt check, restraint down and restraint check.
Open the gate for 4 more people. Let them clamber across the 2nd car, sort out their loose items, sit down, seatbelt on, seatbelt check, restraint down and restraint check.
Dispatch 2 cars. Car 1 takes the circuit straight away, car 2 stops just outside the station until car 1 has cleared the first block of the layout.
Once car 2 pulls away, car 3 which has been sitting in the station with people in it this whole time can move to the front of the station and offload.
Of course I was the 2nd car to be despatched.
Fortunately this version has only a lap bar and not the Slammer/Mumbo Junbo restraints so it was comfortable to sit stuck for a good 10 minutes.
Obviously the restraints also made the ride a fair amount better than I’m used to and it was exceptionally smooth, so a pretty good experience overall with their characteristic wacky inversions, corners and drops.
Mario has got the El Loco cred.
Some other shooting dark ride I wanted (Bavarian Animal Rescue?) was also closed today. Headed back outside for a few more laps on Fjord instead.
Plucked up the courage to give the final go a hands up, which would normally be very easy me. This one of those rides where you really don’t feel you should and then get somewhat tenderised by various parts of the train and lap bar as a result. In a good way.
The viking area is rather nice.
Quite a nice park overall really, just the amount of closures of secondary rides meant there was little else to fill the day with other than sitting in the comfy woodie train, waiting for customers to arrive.
It would be good to see this one get an expansion to the coaster lineup like some of the other Happy Valleys are currently going through (the first parks in China to really see anything like this). Hopefully it can get some better transport links to keep up with the others as well.
Satisfied, went back to the station for a look around.
Tianjin has a rather posh appearance in the middle. Not so much as you head outwards.