Paramount's Kings Island TR

Location: Kings Mills, OH (near Cincinnati)

Date: 4/20/97, 6/5/97, 6/26/97, 7/30/97. 8/20/97

Weather: Cool

Crowd: Medium

Admission: $30.95

Description: The original Kings Entertainment Park, the descendent of Coney Island of Cincinnati, some of it's flat rides are from Coney.


Rollercoasters:

Adventure Express

An Arrow Mine Train coaster - 1991

This family oriented Mine train features 4 special effects tunnels, a helix type section and 2 lifts. One midway through the ride, and another at the end to bring you back to the station. There are no steep drops, but there are some laterals and quick direction changes. Rumor has it that Arrow had not built a Mine Ride for 10 years prior to the opening of this ride. Maybe just as PKI Racer is credited with bringing back the wood coaster, Adventure Express, brought back the mine ride.

Trains: 3 Arrow mine trains (5 cars / 6 per car)

Platform: Flush loaded, seat queues.

Opinion: The best of the Arrow Mine Trains, really gives you a runaway feeling. Plus those looking for thrills run right past it, so it's almost always a short wait.

The Beast

A Curtis Summers terrain coaster - 1979

Description: The longest wooden roller coaster in the world. It features brakes :(. Seriously, it features a first lift, leading to a steep drop down into a underground tunnel, back out and to the left for a couple more dips, then right into the mid-course brake shed from hell, take another right and down an ever slight, gradual drop into the second tunnel, part above and part underground, the tunnel encloses a turnaround and leads to a fast jaunt along what appears to be the edge of the woods, with a couple quick turns, and laterals (sometimes), and up into the second lift hill. After the 2nd lift hill you take a shallow but long drop to the left into the 540 degree helix, partially tunneled, with the ultimate head chopper effect. (design sketches and artist renderings show this as a totally enclosed helix, what's the deal?) After the helix, you have one more slight dip then it's to the longest final brake run in the world, seriously, they could have had a few bunny hops here or something. (The brake run is so long due to it's first few years of 4-train operation, they wanted to be able to stop all 4 on the brake run in emergencies.

Trains: 3 by PTC (6 cars/ 6 per car) The trains have headrests, seat dividers, seat divider extensions that go up the back of the seat, and ratcheting lap bars. If they added seatbelts they would have a train loaded with all the extras <G>. Anybody remember the days of 4 train operation with 4-bench PTC's (4 cars / 8 per car)? At least those trains did not have any of the extras.

Platform: Flush-loading, seat queues. Note: When they have extra staff they have the extra person(s) assign seats, especially on busy days. When seats are assigned, it is up to the assigner as to wether they will let you wait for certain seats.

Opinion: Well, this can be an awesome ride, or on par with a Scenic Railway (not that Scenic Railways are bad, it's just that the Beast was not designed to be one) , depending on one thing, how many of those brakes are they using. Last time I checked, there are skids down the first drop, cresting the second hill, the mid-course brake shed from hell (long enough to hold a train here), down the second drop, and the final brake run. When all of these are on you are riding Amtrak or a scenic railroad through the woods. When all brakes are off (if you should get that lucky, try after torrential downpours as these are skid brakes, also the last few trains, sometimes, run brakeless at night in order to get the built up queue line through so the operators and mechanics can go home) this is one awesome ride, not only is it long, it can feature decent laterals at the first turn after the first drop (depends on 1st drop brakes), good laterals between the mid-course shed and the 2nd lift (depends on mid course brakes), and in the helix at the end *depending on 2nd drop brakes), also there can occasionally by a hint of floating airtime off the 2nd drop (after the first tunnel, depending on the 2nd hill brake). Anybody else notice these brakes are placed in such places as to cut off laterals/airtime. Get a brakeless run, and nothing compares, get a full braked run and carry on a conversation (which ride's next) during the ride.

The Beastie

A John Allen junior coaster - 1972, with a tunnel added in 1980

Description: Your typical John Allen junior figure 8 coaster. This one opened up as the Scooby Doo in 1972, it was modified with the addition of a tunnel at the bottom of the first drop, as well as the name change and slogan "The best of the Beast, only kid sized"

Trains: 2 PTC junior trains, w/ trad. lap bars, (5 cars, 4 per car)

Platform: Flush-Loaded, seat queues

Opinion: A nice little coaster. Very good for a kids ride, I like this one the best of the quads, (I've ridden 3 of 4) because of the tunnel (talk about headchopper when you're over 6' tall riding a junior.) Unfortunately, this year "The best of the Beast" slogan is coming even more true as brakes were added at the turnarounds, killing all airtime and laterals. Note: next time you find a ride with dividerless seats, try sitting sideways, it's a funky feel.

1997 Note: Early in the season those turnaround brakes were not on, so it gave a great ride again.

King Cobra

A TOGO stand-up coaster - 1984

Description: The first successful stand-up looping rollercoaster in North America. The original of the stand-ups includes a vertical loop and a helix.

Trains: 2 TOGO standup trains (6 cars/ 4 per car)

Platform: Flush-loading, seat queues.

Opinion: Worth a ride every now and then as a novelty

Outer Limits:Flight of Fear

A SM&C / Priemer Rides - enclosed, launched, multi-element - 1996

Description: This rollercoaster is unique in that it travels a full circuit with no lift hill. Instead upon reaching the platform you take your seats and are then launched by linear induction from 0 to 54 in 4sec. straight out of the station (the launch makes the ride, it's incredible, and instantaneous, you have to see it to believe it), after the launch you go through 3 inversions (I don't know what they are) then you go back to the top of the building to begin a spiral decent of the structure ( with a couple bumps along the way down) you suddenly make a quick turn in the opposite direction at the very bottom and head into a corkscrew finale (4th inversion).

Trains: Currently running 2 of 4 SM&C trains (5 cars/ 4 per car) with heavily padded OTS retraints.

Platform: Two stop loading, seat queues, seats are almost always assigned, and there is no waiting for seats when it is. Has heavily themed queue area.

Opinion: Great launch, but the rides fails to live up to potential after the launch. The inversions are over before you know it, so you mainly remember the spiral 'Galaxi-like" portion of the ride. The great launch leads to a mediocre ride. Not worth the 2-3 hour waits it has been getting.

The Racer

A 1972 John Allen Racing Coaster

Description: John Allen's first racer. It features what used to be two mirror image out-and back coasters. Unlike his other racers, the split is halfway back on the way out, letting you see two identical, yet spaced out turnarounds. For the 96 season the last dip on the north track has been removed, and the brake run lengthened. For the 97 season, they took out the last dip on the south track, so it is once again a 'twin racer' The ride can provide good airtime on the return leg, provided the turnaround brake isn't on hard. Does PKI own stock in the "Wood Coaster Braking Systems Co."? This is also the first coaster to allow you to ride facing both forwards or backwards, with seperate lines for each.

Trains: 2 per side by PTC w/ seat dividers, headrests and ratcheting lap bars (5 cars/6per car)

Platform: Flush loading, seat queues, poorly designed with the entrance at the front of train so you have to push through people to get the back half.

Opinion: A solid coaster, can be a good ride if the turnaround brake is off, always a fun ride however.

This ride has appeared in several TV shows like Brady Bunch, and is commonly refered to as the coaster that started the re-birth of the woodie.

Scooby Zoom

A 1992 Miller kiddie coaster

Description: A modern kiddie-oval this one features 2 circuits per ride, and an on-ride photo camera. You must be a child, or ride with one. Iv'e never ridden it.

Train: 1 train, (6 cars, 2 per car) Lap bars and seatbelts.

Platform: One stop loading(not Flush), seating on first come/first serve basis.

TOP GUN

A 1993 Arrow Suspended Coaster

Description: The last(?) Arrow suspended coaster, has a top gun theme and actually follows the terrain quite well, the lift goes up, over a hill, turns around and drops down towards a ravine for the station fly over, then it races along the bottom of the ravine.

Trains: 2 suspended trains by Arrow (7 cars/ 4 per car)

Platform: Themed queue area leading to seat queues. Flush loading.

Opinion: A good suspended, the ride is fun, but it suffers from being too short..

Vortex

An Arrow Multi-Element - 1987

Description: An arrow multi-element coaster featuring a steep first drop and rise into a swoop turn, into 2 vertical loops, a turnaround to the mid-course brake, 2 corkscrews, out towards the midway for a boomerang, and then a helix to end it. Unlike most Arrow coasters, this one does not have the corkscrew as it's last inversion, also the inversions are kept high in the air, unlike other coasters.

Trains: 3 Arrow trains (7 cars/ 4 per car)

Platform: Flush-loading, seat queues

Opinion: An excellent multi-looper. Still one of my favorites


Other Rides:


Opinion: Good park, suffers from severe TPM and roller-coaster braking but has the potential to be a great park (with the right owners).

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