December 20, 2010 - biZarRo
After my trip to the IAAPA Attraction Expo, I headed down to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay to check out all the cool coasters they had. My favorites were the B&M's, and I had such a great time and hope to get back there to ride Cheetah Hunt.
My first stop of the trip was to ride probably one of the roughest woodies I have ever been on, Gwazi.
I was really hoping they would have their Millenium Flyer's on, but I was stuck with the PTC's. I could almost feel my brain rattle! Although the layout was nice, I couldn't wait for it to end. Up next was the new kid, SheiKra. I had been on Griffon
, its younger brother up north, a few years before. I personaly like SheiKra
better because the theming is a lot more detailed, and I like the African theming a lot better than the European theming. I loved the ride, and I felt like I was skydiving. I was also lucky enough to get an end seat. Next it was time for one of the first B&M's in existence, my favorite ride of the park, Kumba
. I could definitely see why they named it Kumba
(which, by the way, means "roar" in Swahili). The ride was so loud the ride operators and attendants had to wear ear plugs. This was literally, Great Bear
times two for me. Kumba
was a great ride from the start, with a forceful loop only found on Batman the Ride
clones, with many inversions and magnificant pacing compared to some Arrow multi-loopers from back in the day. The ride interacted with the terrain very well, and I was tempted to touch the ground since the final helices were very close to it. I went on to ride this ride three more times. It was then time for something old and something moved, Scorpion
and Cheetah Chase
. When I got to the Timbuktu area, Scorpion
(that darn thing) was stuck on the lift. So I went to Cheetah Chase
and returned to wait until it was open. It was an easy front seat wait.
After the two smaller coasters, I went to look at some of the animals, my favorite being the tiger exhibit in Jungala. I also got on Rhino Rally, which was shorter than expected because of the construction of Cheetah Hunt
and the new cheetah exhibit, Cheetah Run. The ride could have provided some great pics of the site of Busch Garden's first Intamin coaster. I then ate lunch at the Crown Colony Restaurant, near my second favorite coaster of the trip, Montu
The Egyption God of the Sun was very nice, and I liked it better than another one of those coasters up north, Alpengeist. It was pretty close, considering the pacing wasn't that good on the second half of Montu
, and Alpengeist
was kind've drawn out. But I side with Montu
because of its trenches, and it has one more inversion. Anyways, Montu
would have definitely been my favorite coaster of the trip if it hadn't been for those trims.
I did view some of the construction for the next big thing at BGT, Cheetah Hunt
. The ride isn't very far into this phase, although I did spot a station, brake run, and possibly a transfer track, not to mention a huge trench. This kid also covers a lot of ground, going from the Crown Colony Restaurant all the way over to Rhino Rally. I can't wait to go back!
Busch Gardens Tampa Bay was B&M paradise for me, with a sitting coaster, inverted coaster, and a Dive Machine. I also enjoyed Scorpion
, which was my first Schwarzkopf credit since Wildcat
at Cedar Point in June. BGT really captured the African theming with nice amounts of terrain in the Congo and Jungala areas of the park. My coaster count was...Gwazi Lion