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Alton Towers 2nd September 2018

Matt N

Well-Known Member
Hi guys. Sorry to bore you all with another of my trip reports, but my family and I set off for Alton Towers today. We used our tickets left over from our trip 2 weeks ago, and we arrived at around 10am. We were met by quite a busy car park, so we got out of our car and headed to the park. We got in at around 10:30am, and after that, we headed to our first ride...
The Smiler
When we got to X-Sector, we entered a 50 minute queue for The Smiler. The ride was duelling today, which was awesome! Also, all of the effects were working today, as well as an extra strobe light! So how was the ride? Well; we were sat in the back, we were duelling and it was brilliant! I absolutely love how intense the ride is; Gerstlauer put some brilliantly executed inversions into the ride, and each one added to the feeling of disorientation! The ride had a slight rattle and the cobra roll jolt, but these didn’t detract from the ride for me! I always feel as though I shouldn’t like The Smiler, but I really do; it’s one of my biggest guilty pleasure coasters! All in all, a great start to our day! The rest of my family really enjoyed it, too. After Smiler, we headed to our next ride...
Thirteen was on a 40 minute queue, so we joined it. The queue moved quite quickly, so we boarded the ride feeling good. The ride was awesome, if you ask me! We were sat in row 5, and the ride was good fun today! The turns were nice and snappy and I thought I felt one or two pops of airtime! I also love the backwards section; if you ask me, it’s really thrilling going backwards in the dark! So all in all, Thirteen was really fun today! My family all seemed to like it, which was good! After Thirteen, we then headed to our next ride...
Nemesis was running brilliantly today, as always! We were sat in row 6, and the ride was really intense, with some awesome G’s! It was pretty smooth, too, with only a minor rattle! I swear Nemesis has been running brilliantly this year, because it was amazing in August, too! I even greyed out down in between the helix and the zero-g roll! So overall, Nemesis was amazing! My family mostly seemed to enjoy it, too, apart from my mum who hates Nemesis anyway! After Nemesis, we headed to our next ride...
Now, today was the first time I had ridden Galactica VR-less since it was converted to Galactica in 2016, so I was excited to get back on it after 2 years of riding it with VR. The queue was 50 minutes when we joined, and it initially moved quite slowly. However, when we got to the station, we discovered that this was because everyone was queueing for the back 3 rows, which have the VR on them. So after the merge point, me and my mum just walked virtually straight into row 4. So how was the ride? Well, I thought it was good fun; not massively intense or forceful, but still good fun, in my opinion! It was refreshing riding the coaster VR-less again, and all in all, I think my mum used a good word to describe Galactica; “pleasant”. I’d completely agree with this, as while Galactica isn’t the most thrilling of coasters, it’s mostly a really nice ride that portrays the sensation of flying wonderfully, in my opinion, although I’m not a huge fan of when you’re on your back! So all in all, me and my mum really enjoyed Galactica! After Galactica, we headed to our next coaster, taking an interesting mode of transport there...
Today was the first time that I had ridden the Skyride in quite some time, so I was interested to see my opinion on it now! Also, I was looking forward to viewing Wicker Man from a different perspective! The queue to get the Skyride to the entrance was walk on, so me and my family boarded our gondola and set off on our journey. In my opinion, it was nice seeing the Gardens and Wicker Man from a different perspective, but the ride was a bit shaky! Also, the gondola stopped in a lovely opportune location that provided a brilliant aerial view of Wicker Man! So all in all, I personally quite liked the Skyride! After getting off the Skyride, we headed to our next ride...
Wicker Man
When we got to Wicker Man, it was unfortunately suffering with technical difficulties, so we got some waffles while we waited for it to open. The waffles were lovely! A really nice way to wait for Wicker Man to open, and just as we finished our waffles, the Wicker Man queue opened! What good timing! By the time we got into it, the sign was already reporting 40 minutes, but my dad thought it only looked about 20-25 minutes long. The queue was moving quite quickly... until we heard “the Wicker Man is currently experiencing a temporary delay and we have ceased our ritual” come over the tannoy. At that point, an empty train went round the course, followed by a few more. Then, a couple of trains with people in went round... before another announcement announcing a temporary delay came over the tannoy. After that, an empty train went up the lift hill and stopped halfway up. It stayed up there for a couple of minutes, but it quickly began moving again. Despite being advised to “leave the woods”, my family and I stuck it out. And I’m glad we did, as the ride reopened around 15 minutes later. So how was the experience? It was awesome! Everything was working in the pre-show, and me and my dad were sat on the very front row. It was great, as per usual! The views were great, and despite hearing reports that the ride felt slow in the front, I didn’t think it did at all! The coaster was lovely and fast, and the corners felt really thrilling! Unfortunately the fire from the shoulders wasn’t working today, but the mist must have been on full pelt today, as I seemed to get much wetter from it than I did on previous rides on Wicker Man! While I don’t think Wicker Man really has a wealth of strong or sustained airtime, there were two or three particularly good moments of airtime on today’s run! The airtime hill before the s-bend drop and the hill following the not-so-boring corner were two particularly good moments of airtime, in my opinion! Besides, Wicker Man doesn’t seem to focus on airtime, so that doesn’t matter a huge amount, if you ask me! My whole family really enjoyed Wicker Man too, and my dad said that he seems to enjoy it more each time he rides it, which is promising! So all in all, Wicker Man was great today! After Wicker Man, I did want to go on Hex, but my family all looked pretty exhausted, so we decided to end out our day there...
So, in conclusion...
My family and me had an awesome day at Alton Towers today! Despite the crowds, we got on quite a bit, and we had a ride count of 6, which is great if you ask me! Getting back to my personal favourite theme park was really nice, and I really enjoyed everything we rode today! Nemesis was amazing as usual, Smiler was awesome, front row Wicker Man was great; it was a really great day out overall!

I’m afraid that’s probably it from me this year trip report-wise! The next time you’ll probably hear from me in the form of a trip report is in April 2019, when my family and I are getting on a plane and travelling to Florida! I’m so excited; we’ve got 14 day Disney passes and we’re visiting all 6 Disney parks! It’ll be my first ever time at Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Blizzard Beach; I can’t wait! Anyway, before I go off on too much of a Florida tangent; 2018’s been an awesome year for me, and thank you everyone for following me on my 2018 theme park journey! I’ve gotten 17 new credits this year, which I’m really pleased with! Here’s to a great 2019!


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Good stuff Matt - glad to hear you got on everything. And here's to a good 2019!

Seems kinda silly that they don't split the VR off from non-VR earlier on Air - such a burden! Shame to hear Wickerman seems to still be having reliability issues.

Matt N

Well-Known Member
Good stuff Matt - glad to hear you got on everything. And here's to a good 2019!

Seems kinda silly that they don't split the VR off from non-VR earlier on Air - such a burden! Shame to hear Wickerman seems to still be having reliability issues.
Thanks @Hixee!

With regards to Galactica, I found the current arrangement perfectly OK, but it would be nice if they did something like Thorpe used to do for Swarm and have separate queues for forwards and backwards seats.

With regards to Wicker Man, the ride has been more reliable lately, but it was unfortunately suffering from a few technical hiccups for quite a bit of the day!