USA 06/23 – Lake Winnepesaukah + Alabama Adventure
Having had all the big hitters back to back for a few days, the pace of the trip inevitably had to change a bit. We had ended up staying just over the border in North Carolina, having learnt on route that Gatlinburg = bad. The only place in America where seemingly all parking is a $20 day rate – no use when you just want to grab some food passing through. And then there’s no civilisation for the next hour of mountain roads.
With a lot of states converging in this vicinity, it was then back through some of Tennessee and then no more than a mile over the line before winding up in Georgia again for
Day 11 – Lake Winnepesaukah Amusement Park
And here it is. For the ‘summer season’ (someone needs to tell both Sea World and Six Flags) the park gets a little on the pricey side, for what it is, as an additional cost for water park admission becomes included by default. You can save one whole dollar by booking online though!
The most interesting aspect of all entry was that in order to prove your entry, they slather the back of one of your hands with orange paint. This seems a bit much, to the point that the back half of the admissions cabins are covered in the stuff from guests obviously removing and drying as much as possible in passing. Then you must live in fear of touching clothes or any parts of rides with it, because it remained tacky at best for the duration of the visit.
First up was their signature coaster, the #1 Cannon Ball. It’s got all the makings of a classic, simple out and back with plenty of hills, and buzz bars. Rode pretty well for 1967 – nothing overly special, just some solid fun.
Word was that the Wacky Factory was no longer wacky, it was scary. This was true if you’re scared by low budget ghost trains, though thankfully it didn’t fall for the typical trope of obnoxiously loud noises. Should have a POV for you at some point.
Last on the roster of musts was this fellow, a humble #2 Wacky Worm. The never ending variation of faces never ceases to amaze me, there’s something slightly off about this one too, but it delivered exactly what we wanted.
Park complete, we spent a good 10 minutes in the bathroom washing the paint off of our hands before wondering what would happen if we were ‘caught’ between there and the exit for no longer being orange. They’re probably used to it.
After not much more time on the road we were back in Alabama, heading down towards Birmingham of all places. We have one of those.
But it doesn’t have one of these. The car park looked pleasingly quiet as we rocked up for late afternoon. The main street, though more attractive than I was expecting for whatever reason, confirmed an almost ghost town situation.
First up was their signature coaster, the #3 Rampage. It’s got all the makings of a classic CCI and looks suspiciously similar to Megafobia. I’m not familiar enough with the latter to confirm or deny, except for the end bit that leads into a weirdly steep final brake section, like the one at Mt. Olympus. I expect better from a company with Custom in their name and also from the fact that some of their coasters kick ass.
This one did not. It wasn’t bad, had some hilarious wobbly sections at times but otherwise nothing noteworthy going on, the pure definition of what I would call ‘I am on a wooden rollercoaster’. Even the one earlier had more to it. We basically had it to ourselves but the interest wasn’t there.
Next up was obviously that orange thing called #4 Cheddar Chase in the foreground, a Wild Mouse that had made the same journey as us from Lake Winnie at some point in its life. It happened.
As did our second one of these, known here as #5 Centi-SPEED. Now we’re talking.
Park complete, you could tell that not much goes on around here. As we left the establishment, a man with his shirt off requested the re-entry stamp be put on his torso “like a tattoo”, rather than in the traditional spot and this garnered an incredible reaction – staff suddenly looking up from their phones and pouring over from all sides of the plaza repeatedly exclaiming ‘did you just stamp his chest?!’ I’m sure the tale will be told for generations to come.