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Ultimate Rollercoaster > Discussion Forums > Roller Coasters, Parks & Attractions > Midwest coaster trip. Part #4 Valleyfair

Midwest coaster trip. Part #4 Valleyfair

frontrow frontrow Profile

6/19/12 at
2:54:08 PM

It was Tuesday June 12th and our hotel was just minutes from Valleyfair. Before I start, I want to point out that we had to pass up Adventureland in Des Moines Iowa. We were within minutes of the park the evening before. I tried racking my brain of how to fit Adventureland in, but couldn't come up with a solution. Not only would it have been a new park, but this was my first time in Iowa and my first time in Minnesota. Adventureland closed at 7:00 pm that day and we didn't get to Des Moines until 7:00 pm, so it was nearly impossible to add Adventureland and the state of Iowa to my list.

We arrived at Valleyfair at 9:30 for a 10:00 opening. This was my first visit to the park. When the gates opened we headed straight for Renegade, because it was primary goal of that park. We boarded the second train of the day in the front seat. Now in the morning it was only 65 degrees. The ride was very good with a mix of laterals and air time and the first drop was incredible. My only complaint was it was very slow in the turns. We rode the front seat again and then the back seat. We rode the back seat one more time before we left when it warmed up for a total of 4 rides. The back was better than the front and the ride did speed up once the sun came out. Renegade wasn't as smooth as American Thunder or Prowler, and wasn't as good, but it still ranks as my 12th favorite wooden coaster. So it still was a good ride. As far as my GCI woodies, here is how I rank them.
1) Prowler
2) Thunderhead
3) American Thunder
4) Kentucky Rumbler
5) Renegade
6) Lightning Racer
7) Gwazi
8) Roar SF America
9) Wildcat Hershey

Next ride was Mad Mouse. It was better than I expected. Then we hit High Roller. We waited 15 minutes for back seat. This was the pleasant surprise of the trip. This classic woodie was smooth and full of air time. It reminded me of Skyliner at Lakemount, only better. I really wanted another ride on this coaster, but we were short on time.

The kids got their credit on Cosmic Coaster, a kiddie coaster. Then we headed for Wild Thing. We walked onto the back seat then waited a few trains for front, for a total of 2 rides. The back was much better. Out of the Morgan Hypers it had the best return bunny hops, but the first part of the ride wasn't as good. That completes my Morgan Hypers in the US. Here is how I rank them.
1) Phantoms Revenge
2) Steel Eel
3) Mamba
4) Steel Force
5) Wild Thing

The park now was starting to get a little crowded. We waited 25 minutes for a middle seat ride on Corkscrew. This Arrow looper was rough, but it was over water, which was kind of neat. We then waited 15 minutes for Steel Venom, a Intamin inverted shuttle, simular to Wicked Twister at Cedar Point, only one side is twisted. The cool thing about Steel Venom is that there is a pause on the side that isn't twisted. We had a middle of the train seat.

Our last ride was Excalibur. It was a walk on. We rode the middle. A little rough, but this Arrow coaster was unique. It was 3:00 pm and we had another park that day so we left and drove 20 minutes to Mall Of America.

Re: Midwest coaster trip. Part #4 Valleyfair by Overbanked Overbanked Profile at 6/20/12 9:33:03 PM
Thanks for the TR Frontrow. I agree that Renegade's turns did seemed lacking in speed, with that kinda 'meandering through the course' feel. I haven't ridden American Thunder and Prowler; Boy they must be very smooth if they are smoother than Renegade, because IMO Renegade is about as smooth as it gets. IMO these new school mid-size GCI woodies with Milli-Flyer trains (like Renegade, and KY Rumbler) are very re-rideable, and are quality coasters no doubt, but they kinda have that 'B&M effect' if you know what I mean; Thoroughly banked, not many lats (like flat turns) pretty good air, and smooth; They seem almost facsimile-like, with no sure shot 'money' moment. I'll say that the first drop was a nice touch, but not a 'Wow holy crap!' moment by no means; The exception to the rule for me is Thunderhead with the awesome air-filled switching banked transitions.

I agree that Mad Mouse a nice old school wild mouse, IMO a ton better than the Ricochet coasters. Corkscrew is a little rough, but I was riding it defensively avoiding the OTHR's, so wasn't too bad; For me, the back seat on Excalibur was rougher, my least favorite at Valleyfair. I agree that High Roller is a nice old school woodie. I guess I found the right spot on Wild Thing, as I rode it in the back twice consecutively and liked it. The first drop was nice, but I agree that the helices after was just 'okay', but I loved the station run tunnel with head choppers; I see that you ranked it last with Morgan, I gotta get out and ride some more Morgans LOL. Sorry for rambling. Again, thanks for the TR!

* This post was modified at 6/20/12 10:49:00 PM *

Re: Midwest coaster trip. Part #4 Valleyfair by frontrow frontrow Profile at 6/20/12 10:28:03 PM
I really paid attention to your TR. Renegade was great, but Prowler and American Thunder were much better. Renegade did come to life later in the day, but it still didn't measure up to the other 2 I mentioned. The park itself was very cool. I really felt like I was at a top notch Cedar Fair park. We had 2 parks in one day on our schedule. I wish we could have dedicated a whole day to each park. Your favorite coaster of Valleyfair, Wild Thing was good, but the other Morgan hyper coasters are better. I'm really glad we included Valleyfair into our trip. Hopefully you can visit Six Flags St Louis and Worlds Of Fun, so you can make your own assessment.
Re: Midwest coaster trip. Part #4 Valleyfair by Overbanked Overbanked Profile at 6/20/12 11:11:03 PM
^^^Don't get me wrong Frontrow, I wasn't questioning your opinion on liking American Thunder & Prowler over Renegade (I even said it on my TR that it won't threaten my top ten woodie list) just surprised that anything can be too much more smoother than it, then again woodies are known to be temperamental. I'm not saying that the weather had anything to do with it's smoothness for me (the weather might who knows) but it was pretty chilly when I rode it.
Re: Midwest coaster trip. Part #4 Valleyfair by frontrow frontrow Profile at 6/20/12 11:29:14 PM
You may ride Prowler and American Thunder and still like Renegade better. One thing I have learned is that we all have different preferences. Like I stated before, I give you a lot of credit for visiting these parks, being that you live in Florida. I was fortunate enough to ride these 3 GCI woodies in 3 consecutive days, which gave me an opportunity to measure each one against the other. Word of advice: next trip to the Midwest, include Worlds Of Fun. Great coasters and a very unique park. Worlds Of Fun gives you that public park feel with coasters and amusement rides in it. I don't know if that makes sense now, but after you visit, you'll know what I mean.