Hello everyone, here's my trip report of the wonderful day I had at the Thorpe Park Mini Meet 25/05/13.
After arriving at a nice and sunny Thorpe Park just before 9:30, I was greeted by a wonderful bunch of people that were TPM. Han, Jack, James and Mer had survived their first ride of the day being the Fish Mobile while Alex arrives perfectly fine after a busy night in Winchester.
After waiting for Ethan to purchase his brand new shiny Premium Pass [thanks Styles], we all headed in to the park for a great and exciting adventure. The first ride of the day was Inferno which had no queue at all and were able to instantly jump on the ride [not literally]. I sat on row 6 which the ride was running very smoothly but yet powerfully at the same time delivering a exciting and pleasant ride. After the ride came to an end, it seemed most peeps were staying and after finding a spare seat near Han and Mer in row 6 I also managed a second ride on the fiery ride. At ten years, the ride has aged pretty well and until I rode this I almost forgot how awesome this ride actually is. It's just a shame the mist wasn't running though. 8/10.
After leaving the volcano, I then took on my first ever ride on the one and only sky swat which is Slammer. I sat along with Scary Coaster Boy and Styles who despite my growing adrenalin, told me I would be fine and this ride would be enjoyable. Once the ride began and the restraints locked in to place, the right began lifting slowly beginning it's pattern. As soon as I witnessed a beautiful sight of the park, the giant arm flew upwards pushing me, Adam and Styles head first towards the ground flying 360 degrees several times before repeating again in reverse.
After a few minutes of experiencing the wrath of Slammer I am pleased to confirm I came off the ride perfectly fine with no signs of nausea or sickness. I really enjoyed the ride and am completely glad I tried it. The experience on the ride is so unique and thrilling and headrush feeling you get when it flips is definitely not as bad as I was expecting. If all else fails, at least I can now say I've ridden the worlds only Sky Swat, 7.5/10.
Ride four of the day was Saw the ride where we headed over to the abandoned island. Whilst we entered the creepy ride entrance, music by Emeli Sande was playing out of the speakers [how appropriate ;] ]. The ride also had no queue and we were able to be seated on the ride quickly. In terms of operations, the ride was mixed bag. Today the axes and spikes in the dark section weren't working leaving just dark and empty scenes and although it was an interesting and different experience, the factor these weren't working was rather disappointing. The ride itself however seemed to running reasonably smooth thankfully [ in my car at least] where there was little to no head banging moments which for once I came off the ride pleasant and happy instead of receiving a mini head ache, 7.5/10.
The fifth ride of the day was Colossus which was also the first ride of the day we properly queued for as well. Thrill seeker Alex meanwhile appears to have been taken by the Smiler however this was soon resolved when he was told the ride was at Alton Towers and wasn't open yet. Meanwhile in the background, it appears Han may have let one loose.
On the ride today, I sat in the 2nd row with Alex. The ride today appeared to be running smoother than it used too and the head banging on the ride wasn't as extreme as it usually is. Colossus has definitely improved in terms of ride roughness but though seriously needs a paint job as it looks very faded on the track, 7.5/10. After coming off the ride, I felt quite dehydrated having not drunk for a while and so bought a bottle of coke with Jack which afterwards felt much better.
Whilst queuing for Detonator, James and Jack pass the time by bringing a welcomed return to the Bromance.
It isn't long before Scary Coaster Boy gets involved too. However he seems disappointed at how long the queue actually is.
The ride itself was great fun as usual. Meanwhile at the top, the countdown and music seemed to stop but there was no sign of dropping which several members questioned whether the ride was stuck and had broken down. However, we were soon dropped eventually and soon learnt the staff were just teasing Styles [who works at the park]. The extended drop gap made the ride experience that much more fun today, 7.5/10.
After a long and energetic ride on Detonator, everyone has come off the ride completely fine [ or have they?]. A mysterious drinks capsule has emerged from Scary Coaster Boy which Ethan can only respond by laughing uncontrollably.
Jack prepares for an almighty ride on Rush. The ride today was enjoyable enough but should've done a few more high swings as it started slowing down just when you got in to the swing of things, 7/10.
James and Mer prepare for the forces of Zodiac whilst Styles hope his stomach will manage the ride well enough.
Today I shared a pod with mr Fish. The ride today though was also on a short setting as it barely made one full 360 turn before the ride started to lower again, 5/10. Just after leaving the ride, we were shortly joined by our final members of meet who were Flipper & Rich making the total now 13.
After buying my new Merlin drinks capsule, we noticed the dome had been transformed in to a roller skating rink ready for the Roller Disco Nights which were taking place the weekend during out visit. There was also afternoon try out sessions which costed £5.
Whilst waiting to board the Flying Fish, Mer is very annoyed by the badly arranged queuing of the ride whilst Styles is happy that he will be fine on this ride. Meanwhile Mr Fish is very excited to finally take a ride on his personal coaster.
However Mer becomes much happier when the team finally get to go on the ride and also of the noticibly increased shrubbery on the ride making a step nearer to the original.
The ride was great fun today as we got three laps on the ride instead of two. Ethan also started a Mexican wave on the train making the experience even more exciting. The ride has definitely improved through the years as quite a lot of shrubbery has been growing around the ride now making it look much nicer. Although there is still a long way to go before it gets to the standards of the original, the ride is definitely heading in the right direction in terms of age and presentation, 7/10.
After riding the Fish, It was time to brave The Swarm. I braved it backwards with jack which though the queue time wasn't crazy, it was a good 20-30 minute wait and definitely a lot longer than normal rows which Phil and Ethan decided to do instead. Once boarded on the ride, we began our backwards experience before coming off the ride and collecting our belongings.
The Swarm backwards is a strange experience and quite different to the forwards rows. The ride heads up the lift hill where the track slowly disappears while you rise from the ground before being twisted upside down and plummeting towards the earth. The rest of ride is unique but a little disorienting. You don't get to experience the near misses because you are facing away. In summary, backwards is a very fun experience but for me, forwards has the edge, backwards 7.5/10.
After braving and escaping from the Swarm, we headed to the once lost and random pyramid building that is known as X. We waited outside in fairly small queue which the ride seemed to appear that it was closed, however Styles found a secret pathway which lead us in to the ride area. Once there, we found the baggage reclaim area where we put our bags through the system before queuing for the ride. I have to admit, X is another ride at Thorpe I haven't done and that includes the original one as well [ ]. Whilst at the loading platform, loading went very quickly as the people would board in the ride with lap bars lowered and then checked by staff before the train being sent off. Then not long afterwards, another train would enter the station without any people on-board.
I went on this ride with fish we were the last in our group to try it out. Once boarding on train 4, we went up the lift hill before shooting down the track through twists and turns. Though the experience definitely wasn't outstanding, it was a great fun little ride and the lights and sounds around the ride made it very enjoyable. From what I've seen and heard, X is a definite improvement from it's predecessor, 7/10.
After an X-lirating ride on X, it was time to have some lunch as most of us were hungry and where better to have it than Bar 360. Although we were about to tuck in some tasty food, we had to sadly say goodbye to Phil who was about to leave the meet for a party reducing the number of the group to 12.
Whilst relaxing in Bar360, James finds great pleasure sipping from the straw of his Merlin drinks capsule while Scary Coaster Boy decides to have a staring contest with the camera.
After seeing James pose for a photo, Matt Creek becomes just a bit jealous and poses for a photo showing off his new shiny drinks capsule.
Where the bromance continues when Matt & Jack become burger buddies ordering their food together to master the Bar 360 food deal.
The food at Bar360 is very nice, the beef burger I had there was very succulent and meaty and was delicious, will definitely eat there again.
Whilst everyone is finishing off their meals, Mer indulges in to a drink of wine whilst Ethan tries to hold bunny ears over Mer.
After a tasty lunch, James braces himself to prepare for the powerful forces of Inferno by squatting on the net in the ride area.
Meanwhile just before boarding Rumba Rapids, Mr Fish receives an instant tempory power of becoming a ghost while Mer is strongly confused by what seems to be going on here.
Now on the ride and Scary Coaster Boy is ready now for a bumpy adventure on this Thorpe Park classic.
Then the boat is suddenly flooded with water and Matt Creek, Fish, Scary Coaster Boy, JamesC, Jack Stevens and Styles are suddenly mysteriously lost at at sea on the ride.
However after finally leaving the rapids behind completely fine but very wet after soaking from a giant hose [requested by Styles], word spread quickly that Inferno had no queue which meant there was only thing that could've been done, Leg It! The hose on Rumba certainly did make the ride much more enjoyable, 6.5/10. Back to Inferno and I went on the back this time and the ride ran even more awesomely than earlier on, the ride surely is improving through it's age.
After reopening from some sort of closure, everyone is ready to brave it tunnel-less on Loggers Leap. James and Scary Coaster Boy are ready to party in the queue like it's 2013.
Meanwhile in the long queue line, Matt Creek chomps away on a giant array of chocolate buttons before his voyage and despite offering some to others, there still seems so many left before then boarding a log with JamesC, Jack, Mer and Thrillseeker Alex. The ride was just enjoyable as always and this was the first go on the ride I did tunnel-less. The ride without the tunnel is very different in how it just goes outside to drop with woodland before going back inside the remainder of the tunnel. Though it's a shame the tunnel is gone [ for now at least], the tunnel-less drop doesn't ruin the ride too much and the remaining tunnel is still a nice length with several moments of complete darkness still there. Loggers is much better than Falls which is in a much worse state to Loggers this year anyway. The double drop was as fun as always especially with everyone I was riding with. Also the water level seemed very high then as well [maybe too high] as it was really high in the trough. Everyone in the boat got absolutely drenched by the ride. Loggers is still a great ride even without it's tunnel, 7.5/10.
After leaving Loggers, I stuffed my face even further with more buttons but there were still so many left. This was just a moment before Ethan decided to do Samurai. Having wanted to try the ride I also joined him and jumping on to my pod [ almost turning the thing over], I sat down with Ethan, Adam and another beginning my first ride on the mighty warrior. Once the ride began, the centre arm went around all over the place spin with the cars all flipping around. One moment the pod was at one location, the next it was at a completely different one and it was just like a ninja in ride rotation. I would have quite enjoyed the ride but the strong regret of eating those chocolates came in to play as the ride's fast and spinning movement's really affected my full stomach making me feel nauseated and quite sick. During the ride, enjoyment was soon traded in for concerns of being sick as the ride went on.
Thankfully I wasn't sick but felt rather nauseated for some time afterwards. Overall I liked Samurai but I really strongly regret eating those chocolates before. Advise of the week, never go on intense flat rides after stuffing your mouth with chocolate! After we came off, other members took on the mighty warrior where some took it better than others. Han had her first go on the ride and came off the completely fine and well. However it wasn't the same for Styles who during the ride threw up there. What made things worse was JamesC was nearby. Samurai, 7/10.
After witnessing a disgusting scene on his ride on Samurai, jamesC suddenly throws up whilst queuing for Swarm.
Seeing this opportunity, Matt Creek also decides to let it out in the queue line as well.
After my nearly sick inducing ride on Samurai, It was time to ride The Swarm again but this time forwards. I rode with Scary Coaster Boy this time who rode on the outside and this time we did it forwards. Although forwards is definitely better than backwards, I didn't really appreciate the ride too much at the time as I was still rather nauseated from nearly sickly experience on Samurai. The new billboard element though is a great addition to the ride, forwards 9/10.
After braving it forwards, we decided to do Stealth now which was our final ride of the day where we all legged it to the ride [ a good idea?]. The queue was 30 minutes which although quite long I wasn't complaining as I was still not over Samurai yet. The queue went quite slowly and the ride also broke down at some point too but I wasn't too concerned then. The ride was running on one train today which meant loading was slower than usual however we finally reached the ride and took our seats for the ride.
Once ready to ride, the usual announcements were made before the ride shot off at 80pmh up high and then back down again. Thankfully by now, a lot of my nausea had run off and I was able to enjoy and appreciate the ride which like always I loved the launch and top hat elements of the ride making a great end to the day. Stealth was as great as ever, 9/10.
Once off the ride, it was time to leave the park but not before the usual group photo.
What's happened here then, this doesn't seem right?
Ahhhh, that's more like it.
After the parks closed, everyone starts dancing but then stop shortly afterwards when they find the Roller Disco is actually in the dome.
After a long busy day, Matt Creek and Thrillseeker Alex are sad that such a great day has finished and that it will be a number of weeks before the next get together at LEGOLAND.
Meanwhile, James is still busy raving along to the noise in one of the rides queue lines. This is no time to get dancing James, it's time to go home! Oh well.
Well, that was a brilliant trip and meet and I would like to thank everyone who came along and attended and it wouldn't have been half as good if you guys hadn't been there. Bring on the next trip which will most likely be LEGOLAND, until then, bye for now.