USA 06/22 – Dorney Park + Summary
Let’s get this over with, it’s a highly anti-climactic finish. All the good stuff had been and gone and we were left with half a day to perform a courtesy mop up of one more park on the platinum pass.
But the bucket was dry.
Day 19 – Dorney Park
For some reason this had the longest queue of any park to even get inside the entrance. Everyone and their dog had turned up for what appeared to be the water park and security were being particularly slow and thorough. Not kicking Hershey’s ass so far are we?
Our original plan was to hit the stupid low capacity mouse fresh and early, but by the time we had reached it there was already a disgusting queue. Thinking it was only going to get worse we joined anyway and then it failed to move for a solid 5 minutes.
#1 Hydra The Revenge was a walk-on however so, you know, these mice at Cedar Fair parks are just plain awful.
And the ride ain’t half bad all things considered. Silly jojo roll is silly and then I greatly appreciate the non-conforming layout thereafter. It doesn’t drop into an inversion, it’s a little terrain inspired, the shaping of that cobra looks hilariously off and Hydra is an all round good time. Like the B&M I used to know and love.
This being an ancient woodie (and also a walk on) was a complete surprise, I didn’t even know what #2 Thunderhawk #2 was. At least it isn’t another SLC.
In fact it was an even bigger learning experience as it also taught me that this park is well over 100 years old and yet you’d never know it. There’s not a single trace of vintage about the place. A sign in the station proudly proclaims that they used to have dark rides, so what happened there? Incidentally we don’t have any of these listed in the DRDb archive yet – if you have any information to share then please do.
The ride was entirely forgettable at this point. Good, but I don’t even know.
#3 Steel Force was next along the path and yet another coaster with no queue. This one landed squarely in the middle of Mamba and Wild One in terms of float and crunch in the final sequence of hills, which is the only part that really separates them all.
The first half of clunky fun drop and big hill of nothingness, followed by moderately Forceful corners, Steel feels exactly the same. Pretty good.
Oh no, not another Impulse. Lessons thoroughly now learnt it was back row all the way on #4 Possessed for that rear spike goodness. Is this the one that pinched the brakes at the top? It might be.
#5 Woodstock Express isn’t so good here either, just another Zamperla. It was being operated by a child though, so bonus points for intrigue.
Sure enough the Mouse had got even worse by this point so we headed over to the last coaster of significance, #6 Talon, the Grip of Fear. The attraction staff didn’t have the grip of how to operate a ride properly however and it may well have been one of the most arduous ordeals I’ve ever witnessed in an amusement park. What could have easily been 5 minutes on two trains took almost an hour, with the second train consistently spending several cycle times with guests stuck and visibly disgruntled in the burning sun on the final brakes. There was zero hustle, there was barely even comprehension or understanding. It was the final piece of the puzzle in learning what we has all known all along. Dorney Park was kicking nobody’s ass.
As for the coaster, meh, not a fan. Yes it breaks a few moulds but it does nothing with that and ends up very meandery in the moments that aren’t standard fare.
After that fiasco the decision had been made for us. There was no time to suffer the mouse queue and it was off to the airport. It all went far too quickly.
As for Dorney, well, it’s a half day park and we didn’t even complete it. There were obvious issues but it’s not a bad lineup at all, when analysed on a global stage. You could quite easily put it on par with the likes of Thorpe Park and that specific part of the world would do very well out of something like Steel Force or even Thunderhawk. The problem is the area of America this happens to be in. There’s literally world class attractions in every direction, just up the road from Dorney. It clearly doesn’t cope well with the slightest crowd levels and, as the place has no soul at all, may well remain relegated forever as the joke park of the region. Why would you come here?
But no doubt I’ll be back here for the +1 if I ever get another platinum pass. It’s always inevitable that one of the many other parks will build something that will kick Dorney’s ass once more, in the near future.
Total states – 15
New creds – 160
New dark rides – 12
New parks – 28
New wacky worms – 2
Best new coaster – Steel Vengeance
Best coaster – Skyrush
Best dark ride – Volkanu
Best park – Kenny Knoebels
Distance travelled – 7000 Miles-ish
Spites – 14/174 (8%)
This trip kinda broke me. So many years of build up and so many creds, I’ve never quite hit that saturation point before and it hadn’t really hit me until I totted it all up.
160 coasters. I’ve obviously done a lot over the years, but never cracked 100 in a single month, let alone 160. Then we consciously skipped 6 by the end of it.
Have you ever stared at your coaster list and thought ‘I don’t even know what that is?’ I don’t expect a yes, but it’s happening to me more and more. It has also been over a month now and I still haven’t properly sat down and readjusted my rankings in any semblance of a sensible manner (Phoenix <3). It’s definitely getting harder to do that, but I’m determined to keep that part up no matter how deep into this I get. It always needs context, searching for that new best thing is a huge part of the appeal for me and the search goes on.
I may have moaned a lot here but it’s more fun that way and it’s still kinda my thing. On reflection there was a perfectly healthy balance of pleasant surprises vs disappointments, I just think the biggest shock was not walking away with a single new entry to the top ten after all of that. As planned I’ve now hit all of the CF top 25 and honestly I struggle to count beyond fingers the number of genuine contender coasters I feel are still out there operating. Which terrifies me on a weekly basis, but I’m undeterred.
Nevertheless, amazing, incredible, trip of a lifetime, loved it, what it’s all about, great stuff, good job, god damn Twisted Timbers.
Thanks for reading.
Until next time.