Here is a trip report I posted over on ThemeParkReview's forums:
Time for a long winded and long overdue review. If you do not like to read and just want to look at pics go here:
There is TWO pages of pictures there – click the ‘NEXT’ on the lower right part of the page to see the second page.
Ok, so this was my first visit to Six Flags Magic Mountain since 1993 so I was not sure what to expect from the park. I had heard all the horror stories about the park being overrun by gang members and the extreme disarray the park had fallen into over the years. Despite all these tales I was really looking forward to having lots of fun at SFMM! The visit started out great even before we started on our quest – I was lucky enough to win two adult passes on ebay for $21, so that saved us a good amount of cash even with the BOGO Coke deal that I was planning on using.
We left my Mother’s house in Culver City a bit after 8am and got to the parking lot gates a few minutes before they opened them at 9am. This gave me a good chance to get my first peek at X and a few of the other rides – the butterflies in my stomach were jumping! According to the news the temperature got up to 109 degrees the day we were there and it felt like it was well over 120! We spent over $30 on water and made good use of the water rides during the day. IT WAS HOT!!
We decided to get the VIP Thrill Pass (all day Flash Pass) since we saved so much money on the tickets and we wanted to ride as many rides as possible. This turned out to be a GREAT buy. Now I take it they do not sell many of these things since the guy at the ticket booth had NO idea how to ring it up and had to get help from a co-worker and each time we purchased some merchandise (a total of 4 different times) each cashier had to ask how to apply our 25% discount. We did not see any other of these passes all day and some of the ride operators had to read the passes to figure out what they were. We went on every ride that offered the flash pass option with the exception of Roaring Rapids, and the ONLY ride that had people using the Flash Pass that we saw was Tatsu! We felt kinda silly using the pass on some rides like Psyclone – since there was no wait for that ride and the ride operator seemed shocked somebody actually used a pass on this ride. Over the course of the day the VIP pass worked out great, I would not hesitate to get it again and would recommend it to anybody that does not visit the park often. I think the best part of the VIP pass was the free meal at the Mooseburger Lounge! I say this not because of the food (I would rate it a 4/10 on the food quality) but because sitting down and being able to take our time in an air-conditioned restaurant with refillable drinks was perfect. It was 109 when we visited the park and the Mooseburger was just what we needed. Had it not been for our free meal there we would have got some even-more-crappy meal at one of the random hole in the wall food stands and eaten outside in the HOT and sticky shade (and would have gotten NO free refills on the drinks!). Even if you do not get the VIP pass I would recommend eating at the Mooseburger for the benefits I mentioned.
Ok, so the rides – we went on a total of 19 *different* rides. A very full day! I am not going to alk about each one of the 19 different rides we went on because this is long enough already lol. What I will do is give highlights….
Goliath was down all day we were there, or at least each time we checked. We also missed out on Superman, but we did go on all the other “big” rides. We skipped all the carnival type rides and kiddie rides.
The first thing we did after sitting thru one of the worst pre-park-opening celebrations I have ever seen was go to ride X. It was kinda tricky to find it since the signs were not the best and we had no idea where we were going other than “over there”. The wait for X was only a few minutes – we walked up directly to the loading area. I have to say X was the BEST ride we went on all day! I had no idea where my body was going or what it was doing! But it really did knock me around and I really felt it for awhile after the ride.
From X we walked over to Tatsu riding Viper and Revolution (thanks to the VIP Thrill pass) on the way over. Tatsu was a great ride! The first time it freaked me out since I have never ridden a ride in the doggie style position! And looking down that HUGE drop going up the ramp was a feeling that I can not quite describe. Thanks to the VIP Pass we rode Tatsu 3 times in less than 30 minutes. We came back to Tatsu later on in the day and rode it 3 more times but the wait was a bit longer thanks to the late-comers holding Flash Passes. But riding Tatsu 6 times in one day was a blast and I wish I had ridden it more!
Later on in the day we went on Ninja we actually got stuck on the ride! When the train started to go up the ramp at the end it just stopped and we were stuck there for about 20 minutes. We were NEVER given a time frame of how long we were going to be stuck and we were not evacuated from the ride (we were stuck next to the stairs). A ride operator did stand on the stairs to watch over us while we were stuck. When they did get the ride un-stuck they never said anything like “we are sorry” or anything like that, the ride operators just talked amongst themselves as we exited the area.
After getting stuck on Ninja we decided to go ride Superman and began to walk over towards it. On the way to the ride we noticed we did not hear it running, something we could hear when we were much further away from it… yes Superman broke down! When we started to walk away from Superman I noticed what I think was some sort of Supervisor, she was wearing a light blue button down shirt and I recognized her from when we exited Ninja. I approached her and said Hello and explained to her that we were on Ninja when it broke down and how we wanted to go on Superman but it was broke. I asked her if there was some sort of front of the line pass we could have since Superman did not offer the Flash Pass option. She was happy to give me 2 passes and told me that I was welcome to use them on “any ride that I can’t use my VIP pass on” later on in the day. She was very nice and I thanked her as she went off in the direction of the broken Superman ride (That AFIK never re-opened that day).
One of the rides I really loved to go on again was the Gold Rusher. When I was a kid I LOVED this ride! It was my first ‘coaster’ when I was a kid and it just has great memories for me. I remember the long lines that this ride had and was wondering how long I would have to wait to go on it this day….. the answer was 5 minutes! I was a happy man It was great to take a ride on the Gold Rusher and take a trip down memory lane.
On the way out we still had those front of the line passes and decided to try to get a free ride on X. We know that X is one of the rides the FOTL passes are not accepted on – but we figured it was worth a shot if we were nice about it. It felt kinda weird walking up the exit and having everybody stare at you giving you the ‘WTF do you think you are doing’ look. As we got up to the exit the ride op looked at out VIP passes and the FOTL passes and called somebody down from the top of the stairs. Being very polite we explained how we got stuck on a ride and were planning on using the passes on Superman but the ride never re-opened. She paused for a second and then said that they do not usually accept the FOTL passes on X but since I was a VIP she would go ahead and let us use them this one time. Score! We did have to go around to the other side and we boarded the ride on the part where they have people get off. So we went on X as the first and last ride of the day – and waited less than 15 minutes total for both rides – not bad bookends for the day if you ask me.
Since we had the 25% off with the VIP Thrill pass we made good use of it! I was very happy to see what was very low prices for the merchandise compared to what I am used to (DL, Sea World and Legoland). I was expecting to pay like $20-$25 for a shirt, but the ones I saw were less than $15. We spent a good amount of money despite the cheap prices and 25% off. One thing I was surprised at was the lack of selection of branded shirts. I was also very surprised to see all the non-Six Flags shops – especially Disney items in the park! That really threw me for a loop when I saw that.
We really had a blast! When we left the park just before 9pm and were exhausted! The park was just as great as I recall. We are already planning a return visit… in the winter time!