Saturday, June 2, 2018

Six Flags St. Louis Trip Report - May 12, 2018

Winter is my least favorite season, because, you guessed it. No coaster riding, and being busy with school. Well, I got a bit of a fill in the past couple weeks, as on Sunday, April 29, 2018, I rode my first coaster of the year, as well as my first new credit of the year - a traveling Wacky Worm. Then a week later, another new credit was calling us in Tiger Terror at Safari Land (a surprisingly fun and violent kiddie coaster with cool theming), and on Friday before Six Flags St. Louis, I picked up Python Pit at Go Bananas (another fun kiddie coaster). So while I was coaster riding, it was more credit whoring. This was where I'd be riding my first big coasters of the year. So I rang up my good friend with ACE, Matt, and left for Six Flags St. Louis. We got up at 4:50 AM to leave by 6:00 AM so we could get to the park at a reasonable time. Was the attempt successful?

Six Flags St. Louis has a wonderful skyline, and while you can't quite see all of it in this picture, it's only going to grow from here, especially with recent additions such as Fireball, Boomerang, and more.

Well, we would later find out that today was a Music In The Parks Day, a Bring A Friend Free Day, and the last weekend Batman would be running backwards, so we were in for some crowds today. I couldn't even get a decent photo of the ticket booths there were so many cars!

Above the other cars, American Thunder was calling us as test trains ran while waiting to get into parking.

It might seem a little strange to photograph a goose here, but you see, I live in Illinois (if the title of this blog wasn't enough), so we don't get weather above 60 degrees fahrenheit until late April, and we're just starting to get into the 70s. So seeing geese like this one was a great sign that coaster season is finally here!

As you can see, Batman got a fresh coat of black paint over the off-season. I guess they wanted to make it look good when... would be running backwards for 2 months.

Oh, and by the way; if you're wondering why suddenly there are trains full of riders and a change in color tone, it's because between the first photo of Batman and the photo of the backwards train, we had to park. The system was chaotic, and the ticket booth operations were quite slow, resulting in park opening of 10:30 occuring as we were parking and walking up to the entrance gates. Six Flags St. Louis is a park I can always have a ball at, but please fix the parking operations!

Looks like Batman wasn't the only coaster that got a little TLC since our last visit; American Thunder was sporting some new paint as well.

Parking was frustrating and all, but the worst was clearly yet to come, judging by the lines just to pass through the metal detectors.

People will generally think that a lamp post like this is a photo block, but I kind of like how it created a foreground effect for Mr. Freeze and Colossus to appear in the background.

Unfortunately, at this point, the worst came. Getting into the park was 8 lines of non-pass holders, and there weren't any employees around for a few minutes before telling us to go to the member line. Luckily, however, once we found the member line, we were into the park and greeting Matt within 5-10 minutes.

It would seem logical to go to Batman first, having it in its last weekend backwards, but as I said, we got into the park late because of bad operations getting everyone into the park, the ride was already building up an hour long line.

That wasn't a total loss however - while I love the Batman clones, I have one back home in Chicago, and I've ridden Batman Backwards before; at my home park in Gurnee and when I was in Austell, GA in June 2015.

Once we met up with Matt, we had to admire the architecture. Six Flags St. Louis, being one of the original three Six Flags parks, has some classic architecture, and all around the park, probably my favorite architecture and scenery of all four Six Flags parks I've visited as of now.

What's that back there? Could it be? Midway games?

Nah, I'm just kidding. We were in the back of the park for Boss. Why might we go straight back for Boss, you ask?

So, if you've been living under a rock, Boss got it's final helix removed and replaced with a straight turn, shortening the track length by a few hundred feet. While I didn't take a photo of it because I couldn't even take my camera into the queue line (there was a security guard outside the ride - why does this rule exist? I hate it) (this is also why there's a lack of Boss photos at this section of the update), the old cross ties and supports for the old helix are still put up under the new turn, which looked really cool.

So just how was Boss running? Matt and I took on Row 11 (second to back row), and it delivered like never before. The first drop was madness, I don't remember the entire ride being that smooth, and it was absolutely speeding through everything. Such an intense ride now! And I must've counted 10 moments of airtime throughout the ride. If you remember Boss being a decrepit, painful ride, you need to get to Six Flags St. Louis. You'll watch your opinion change like that.

This was a really cool angle of Mr. Freeze, but unfortunately, with everyone including myself eager to ride coasters, I had to give up waiting for a train to get into the shot.

While it wasn't our next stop, we walked under Pandemonium to get to the next coaster on our list of what to ride. But as you can tell from this picture, it's not hard to get a good spin on this fun coaster.

This photo is not only a good representation of the twisted Pandemonium layout, but it shows off the new coat of paint the ride got over the off-season. Pandemonium looks great now, with the excellent shiny red track and black supports.

While not huge on good operations, it at least is a big hit with the whole family judging by the rider's expressions in the oncoming train.

Speaking of fun for the whole family, Bugs Bunny Fort Fun is a great thrill for those just getting into the bigger rides. Matt remembers when he was at the age of playing here, this being his home park.

You gotta love how the park hasn't changed the train design, and still has the Six Flags Over Mid-America plaques on the train cars.

Superman: Tower of Power looked real cool with the clouds behind it...

...but we were at the top of the hill to take a spin on Screamin' Eagle for more wooden coaster fun.

As shown here, the part of the queue line that inclines up to the station has walls surrounding the line, making it a bit narrow, but a bit hard to take photos of the ride unfortunately.

But don't worry; that changes in the station, where you can once again get astounding views like this one for example.

Being atop the hill that Six Flags St. Louis rests upon, there are plenty photo opportunities to see most of the other rides throughout the park... this one of Mr. Freeze for example...

...or one of my personal favorite photos I took while at the park, of Mr. Freeze just towering above Pandemonium and Bugs Bunny Fort Fun...

...but thanks to Six Flags St. Louis' friendly and efficient operations, you'll be in the station and picking your row before you know it.

I love the eagle on front of the trains; it looks classy, and I also love the emotions of the riders visible in the picture. It shows how much of a pleaser Screamin' Eagle is.

Screamin' Eagle is also a pleaser for coaster enthusiasts, as shown by the ACE Coaster Landmark plaque it received during Coaster Con XXXIX in June 2016.

But all in all, Screamin' Eagle is a really wonderful, underrated wooden coaster that delivers some great airtime in a wooded location, with wonderful speed and views. I've ridden this ride several times, due to how re-rideable it is. It was running a bit rougher than normal during this visit, but that's how classic wooden coasters like this are.

For a great adrenaline rush, Matt, his dad and I were going to ride Superman, but the line was quite long as (sort of) seen in this photo, and they weren't running all six sides that day. It was a shame I never got on it because Intamin 2nd Gen. Drop Towers like this one and the one at Six Flags Great America are so damn fun with great views and floater airtime when dropping, especially when it was built on top of the park's hill. This one's also pretty cool since it was relocated from the now defunct Six Flags Astroworld.

But, being the photographer I am, before moving on to the rest of the park, I had to take one more photo of Screamin' Eagle...

...and one more photo of Superman.

Before moving onto the next ride on our hit list, we had to take a photo of Fireball with it's hilarious tagline, 'Great balls of fire.' Despite it's photogenicness, Matt and I don't like these rides since we find the trains quite uncomfortable, so we left it to the teenagers who's kind of ride is this.

We were more interested in riding a coaster that I haven't ridden in years, due to being closed the past couple visits I was here.

Boomerang uses the original Arrow Looper trains, rather than Vekoma trains used on Boomerangs such as Flashback at Six Flags New England.

Boomerang has a cool location over the Illinois section of the park, and I remembered it being somewhat decent for my first (and previously only) ride on it in 2014, so I was interested to see how it was running four years later.

Matt and I tried to smile for my dad, since he had my camera to take photos of us on the ride, but it's hard to be a coaster enthusiast and smile on a Vekoma Boomerang.

Yep, that's more like it. Vekoma Boomerangs seem interesting to the general public, since they probably don't travel to many other theme parks besides there home park, but with so many clones everywhere and a rough ride, this is the summary of enthusiasts' opinions on these rides.

This photo was taken right as the train was dropped from the first backwards lift hill, and into the cobra roll. If this doesn't sum up the Boomerang experience, I don't know what does.

In 2014, Boomerang was a somewhat decent experience. Over this visit, there's no more plain way to describe it other than it sucked. The cobra roll and loop smacked our heads all the way through, the second lift hill was jerky and mechanical, and oh joy. We get our heads busted all over again. According to Matt, Boomerang replaced the park's set of bumper cars. Why, oh why did you replace a family fun classic with a crappy classic, Six Flags St. Louis? I understand that with being a relocated coaster, it's not going to run as well, but if park management is reading this, we'd highly appreciate it if you replaced Boomerang with something more fun, like an S&S Free Spin, or at the very least, something like a Zamperla Family Gravity Coaster like Speedy Gonzales Hot Rod Racers at Six Flags Magic Mountain.

However, if anything was good about Boomerang, it was the crew running it. While the restraints were being checked, three of the operators Matt and I overheard were talking about Six Flags Great America, so being the friendly coaster enthusiasts we are, we struck up a conversation with them. So props to you, Boomerang crew from yesterday. It was great meeting you guys.

I'm usually a fan of Sky Screamers and Windseekers at Six Flags and Cedar Fair parks, as they are very relaxing rides and pleasant for views, but the lines built up very quickly, so we weren't in the mood to wait.

This photo is yet another example of how Six Flags St. Louis keeps all their original charm, and puts time into good scenery.

From Old Chicago (the section of the park right next to Illinois), you get a cool view of Batman The Ride and the new for 2017 ride Spinsanity.

Why might I take a photo of this building, you ask? Well, to my knowledge, this was the station of the now defunct second side to River King Mine Train, known as Rail Blazer. In the 1984 season, stand-up cars were added to the defunct side, but due to a death that year, the stand-up trains were removed, and both sides just stood alone as dueling mine trains. It sounds really cool, and would have probably been cool to experience, but was removed in 1987 and sent to Dollywood once Six Flags St. Louis purchased Scream Machine from the Expo '86 in Vancouver. So if you're wondering where the second side was, basically it was where Ninja is today.

Xcalibur wasn't quite ready during our visit. That's kind of a shame, because it's a very unique ride and one that I'd give a go, but I wasn't too sad about the loss this time around.

While not one of my all time favorite pictures, I do kind of like this shot of Mr. Freeze going into it's spike between Xcalibur parts.

Pandemonium was right next to where we were, so it would have been fun...

...but with lines like this, again, we weren't in the mood to wait. I did say earlier that Pandemonium wasn't huge on capacity and operations, and that's due to having just a few cars only holding 4 people per train. But at least, also like I said, it's a crowd pleaser for sure.

Oh well, I love taking photos of it.

After a bit of searching, Matt recommended GoFresh Cafe for lunch, and we gave our orders.

Matt and I were talking about coasters, and I was showing him some of the photos I was taking, and while I was looking for a coaster on my phone to show him, he got a hold of my camera and took a photo of me. I honestly didn't really care; he's got personality, and is a good friend, so I was more than okay with it.

While eating lunch, we noticed that Superman: Power of Tower got stuck. I've seen drop towers get stuck before, so it wasn't a surprise, but it was something worth photographing.

Matt had another moment of great memories as we walked by Bugs Bunny National Park; this was his stomping ground when he was the age of the kids in the photo.

Have I mentioned yet that I love taking pictures of Pandemonium?

Anyways, from the peak at Old Chicago, you get a good view of other rides and buildings down below.

One last photo of Rail Blazer's former station before moving on.

Now that we're back at the bottom of the park, we're heading into the Studio Backlot and Chouteau's Market sections of the park. Starting with a back end picture of Ninja, a somewhat underrated Vekoma ride that we'll get to later.

Doesn't the ride look so cool? To many others, it's a horrible ride; one of the worst in the world. But it has an interesting history.

Because of Batman running backwards for the final weekend as I said, the line was long, and I wish I could have ridden it, but as I said; there are other, more unique attractions to tackle.

Before hitting up the rest of the area, Matt was eager to take me on Spinsanity.

Anyways, while waiting in line for Spinsanity, I took some shots of Ninja. Back to the history; it originally opened as Scream Machine at Expo '86 in Vancouver for the 1986 season, from May 2nd to October 13th. It was basically the World's Fair of the city of Vancouver.

Whilst under construction, this was originally intended to be an Arrow Custom Looping coaster like Vortex at Kings Island or Dragon Mountain at Marineland Theme Park. But Arrow Dynamics fell into bankruptcy while it was under construction...

So Vekoma came in to save the day! While other enthusiasts will be snooty and say Arrow was smart in this case to not finish such a bad ride, I kind of disagree. I'm hinting at my opinions at the ride; don't worry, that'll come soon .The history of the ride is almost over.

But while on the topic of smart decisions, adding Boomerang was NOT one of those in 2012. What was Six Flags St. Louis thinking when doing so?

Despite all the photo taking and coaster talk, we were getting excited to take Spinsanity for a spin. (pun intended)

Back to Ninja, after the Expo '86 was closed and taken down for the year, so was Scream Machine, and it was put up for sale. Who would save the coaster?

Six Flags Over Mid-America would, in 1988. So despite being available for about a year and a half (not entirely sure there), they wanted something cool to take the spot of the old second side of River King Mine Train. And it became Ninja, the second Ninja in the Six Flags chain after the Arrow Suspended coaster at Six Flags Magic Mountain (the best Ninja of the three)

That's the end of the history. After hinting it a couple times, here's my opinion. Is Ninja horrible?

Nope. I didn't think so. I got a bit of a smack in the sidewinder, and another couple in the final tight helix, but what's the deal?

After hating Boomerang post thinking it was decent, I was expecting Ninja to also make me rearrange my Top 10 Worst Coasters, but it's like I've always thought of it; decent.

Unfortunately, while it looks cool from some angles, the supports of elements in front of elements behind said supports can make for some mildly frustrating photobombs.

Oh well. At least this photo looks pretty cool of the train going through the corkscrew, kind of hidden in between the supports and park's natural scenery.

Anyways, away from Ninja for now. Anyone forget we're still in line for Spinsanity?

This photo is a great representation of the facial expressions you'll see of Spinsanity riders. Being the newest ride in the park (Typhoon Twister is not open yet), it's another great crowd pleaser for the whole family.

Spinsanity's line for some reason is a great spot to take photos of other, taller rides. Like this great one of Sky Screamer for example.

But forget the other rides. It's time to ride. Here is me, Matt, and his dad taking a spin into insanity. (Judging by the ACE and Coaster Con shirts, I assume it shouldn't be hard to find us)

Does it look like Matt and I are having a conversation? To be 100% honest, we are. While Spinsanity is fun for sure, smaller rides like this more for the whole family are a great place for us to not only have some fun, but talk coasters at the same time. We save the true adrenaline for the coasters and other thrilling rides.

See? It might seem weird not to just sit back and enjoy the ride, but maybe you should try it out on a ride like a Disko.

After taking a lot of photos of it in line, and Spinsanity, it's time for us to actually ride Ninja.

Even beforehand, Matt admitted he thought Ninja was worse than Boomerang, but this ride on it in the final brake run, he actually said that he didn't hit his head once, and we were in agreement there are much, MUCH worse coasters out there despite the wide enthusiast opinion.

While heading to Ninja, Batman got a little sick and broke down. Poor suckers waiting in the hour plus line.

This photo of Ninja's sign and cool statues will be the last photo of anything Ninja for a while, so if you like seeing photos of the ride, take a good look at it.

As we walked by to our next stop of the day, Batman started testing again. Leave it to B&M coasters to get fixed up quickly! (Unless we're talking about Superman - Ultimate Flight)

At this point of the day, the temperature had reached it's high for the day; 90 degrees. This was by far the hottest day I've had in months, and while I was more than happy to have it like that rather than the horrible winter Illinois had this year, Matt and I were getting a bit sweaty, so we went for the nearest Coke stand for some cold water.

While waiting for the Coke stand, I got this great photo of Batman The Ride, and for some reason, I absolutely love this angle. It looks really kickass to me for some reason. Not sure why. Anyone know why?

After taking a bit of a break with some cold water inside the nearest store (forgot which one), what could we be heading for next?

Could it be Justice League: Battle For Metropolis, a personal favorite of mine?

Not right now, however; while we love the ride, we were more looking forward to Mr. Freeze Reverse Blast.

Freeze is not only one of my favorite steel coasters of all time, but one of my favorite coasters of all time period. I'll get there in a second; I by far photographed Freeze the most, so we'll have plenty of time to tell all my thoughts on this phenomenal ride.

While heading for Freeze's line, we noticed that Shazam, the park's Scrambler, also wasn't ready yet. At least the park is putting time into helping the ride hold up!

Before we get Freeze Funtime started, I want to say that despite the train not being positioned the greatest, I really like this shot of Freeze right there, with the Boss plus Dragon's Wing (the Sky'coaster') in the background.

Anyways, this awesome shot of most of Freeze's layout looks like a great place to start the history. Freeze was originally intended to be a 1997 attraction, pairing it with the extreme failure of a film known as Batman & Robin, but thanks to the LIM issues, the result was Freeze becoming a 1998 attraction.

Kind of like how I took photos of Ninja in Spinsanity's line, I took a couple shots of Boss as well. Don't worry; there are much, MUCH more Freeze shots coming. Doesn't it loosely look like T Express, the Intamin Prefab at Everland in Korea from this angle?

Whee! This drop off the MCBR in the back row was a surprising moment for both me and Matt!

Anyhow, back to your regularly scheduled Freeze photo streak. Not opening until 1998 meant that Arnold Schwarzenegger and George Clooney (the stars of the crapfest) weren't going to be at the opening of the Freeze clone in Texas. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that another version of the ride, a mirror image, opened with the same timeline at Six Flags Over Texas in Dallas.

Unfortunately, like Batman & Robin, Freeze wasn't a good ride experience at all during it's debut, and stayed like that until the 2002 season. Why is that?

Notice how the ride now has ratcheting lap bars? Well, it originally ran with over-the-shoulder restraints. As the famous Robb Alvey described them in the Season Pass Podcast, "Try to put your hands up if anyone rode Outer Limits, or The Chiller, or those Premier coasters with those god-awful, gigantic over-the-shoulder restraints where you got concussions on every ride."

Luckily, Premier fixed that issue in 2002 by replacing those "god-awful, gigantic over-the-shoulder restraints" with the ratcheting lap bars mentioned above, and enthusiasts now loved the coaster.

Freeze continued to operate as so until the 2011 season, as right before the park opened for the season, Six Flags St. Louis announced the coaster would be permanently running backwards, and was renamed to Mr. Freeze Reverse Blast.

While I have always admired the coaster's color scheme, there were a couple parts of the ride that looked like they could use a fresh coast of dark blue paint.

That's basically the ride history. So now we get onto the super fun part. Why I love this coaster so much.

I know that the photos won't quite match up with how I'm describing the ride 100% of the time, so I'll do my best.

So let's just describe a part at a time with the photos. Freeze has one hell of a tight inside top hat, and when launching out of a tunnel at 70 mph, it not only whips you from side to side (in a good way), but as you head into it you get some cool hangtime, but the forces dropping out of it are crazy, and made me grey out on all my rides.

This banked turn is where I finally started to gain my vision back 100%, but despite that, we were still speeding all the way through the inversion with whip and intensity that was felt when I first grayed out. This is just a perfect example of how Mr. Freeze keeps it's intensity all the way through.

Then, before you know it, you're shooting up the 218-foot tall spike. You just speed straight up, everything on the ground getting smaller and smaller, wondering when you stop. Finally, you catapult back down the spike, getting great speed and airtime, and the intensity starts up all over again...

...and it does all the amazing elements in reverse.

I guess that the marketing department really wanted to impress everyone when designing the ride, so they wanted to make Mr. Freeze a true mascot.

Nonetheless, I really like what they did to make Mr. Freeze appear as the BMOC of the ride.

Enjoy the one... the only... Snowy's Ice Cream. I know I sure did!

Here's another photo of the top hat and spike... I know, I know, another one... but it's so photogenic. You can't blame me!

I know I mostly failed here, but I attempted at a reaction shot. How many emotions can you see here? I see excitement, fear, boredom (somehow), sickness, and... an empty seat.

Here's that exact same train speeding down the spike. Looks like there's a whole lot more excitement to go around, and someone who even noticed me taking this photo!

Okay, here's one last photo of the top hat before we move on.

Underbelly shot!

And finally one last shot of the amazing spike.

Upon heading into the station, you're greeted with this cool bulletin board with Gotham City news articles and other nods to the ride. While it's not the biggest deal in the world, little theming decorations do add to the overall experience for me.

Okay, I lied. This is the last photo of a train in the top hat. (it actually is; I promise) But, at the very least, this might be my favorite shot of Mr. Freeze in the top hat I took that day!

From the exact same angle is the final photo of the banked turn...

And I lied again; from the same angle is the final photo of the spike. This also might be my favorite photo I took of Mr. Freeze that day; about tied with two photos ago.

Finally, you enter the station. You start off through a short, narrow hallway that looks like a dentist office...

 Before picking which side you want to ride on. Don't worry, this ain't no Wing or 4D coaster where one side is better than the other. I'll explain why in a bit.

After picking your side, you head up more dentist-office-esque stairs, into...

Into one of the coolest (pun intended) stations I've ever seen.

All puns aside, it seriously is. You have a huge board with a digital sign telling riders facts of the rides, everything is blue and gives off a "chilly" vibe, I love the heights the station designers went to make the station look this great.

The queue says Row 10, but actually we waited for the front row. Why is that? As I mentioned earlier, in the 2011-2012 off-season, Six Flags St. Louis reversed the trains, turning it into Mr. Freeze Reverse Blast, and I guess that the park forgot to reverse the row numbers.

Keeping up with the "cool" theme, (okay, okay, I'll stop) these trains scream it. You've got some real neat designs on the side, and the Mr. Freeze Reverse Blast logo on the front of every car. I really like it.

Remember how I said it doesn't matter which side you chose? This is why. Both sides each load one train (it's a shuttle coaster; what do you expect?), but after a side is loaded and ready, the track the train was being loaded on slides over into the position to launch, and goes through the ride. While the track with the ready train slides over, the track with the other train slides over to unload/load for another, and when the train on the previous track slides back into the station, the tracks slide over for the other to go, and they follow this process. While it sounds very complicated, it's an extremely efficient method to increase capacity, and I have to give kudos to Premier Rides for this design.

Here's a look at the sliding station mechanisms.

Anyways, while walking down from Mr. Freeze to the rest of the park, you get a great view of Justice League: Battle for Metropolis with American Thunder in the background.

Oh yeah, and before moving on, I'd like to say that unfortunately I didn't get around to American Thunder this visit. As I said at the beginning of the report, today was a Music In The Parks and Bring A Friend Free Day, as well as the final weekend of Batman The Ride Backwards, so the lines got increasingly longer, the temperatures got extremely warm, (I'll talk more about why this was a major problem soon) and with that we lost a desire to ride American Thunder.

All right, don't worry. This is the last Mr. Freeze photo for a while... we had other rides to ride, such as the fantastic dark ride across the midway.

We really thought that we had a chance to ride it, as the single rider line for Justice League has been the hidden gem of the park for 2 years.

Unfortunately, maybe it's hidden a little TOO well. We were in that line for 10 minutes and didn't move at all. So we left to move on to something else. Honestly, the only reason we stayed in line that long was because of how ungodly hot it was getting, and it was a nice little break from the headaches.

What happened next is kind of a long story. Matt had been super hot all day, and really needed some shade, so we sat under the vine tunnel for a while. Why don't more Six Flags parks have this? It's a great place to cool down. Anyways, Matt needed something to cool him down, and what better way to cool down than...


Nope. While I think Ninja is okay, Matt absolutely despises it. And plus, he was super hot, so we wanted to take him on a ride that would help that. And the best ride for that is Tsunami Soaker.

Tsunami Soaker for some reason only had a 5 minute line, while Log Flume had a 75 minute line, Thunder River had a 65 minute line, and Tidal Wave had a 40 minute line. And as we got into the cars, started soaking others and ourselves, we all felt 110% better and ready to ride more. Thank you for this fun attraction, Six Flags St. Louis.

For all you haters reading this that listen to reports saying Six Flags St. Louis is the definition of a Six Flags park with no landscaping... this little water and rockworks structure is just a little snippet of some of the great ambiance Six Flags St. Louis provides around the park.

As the sun started to lower, the rides became prettier and we all felt even better.

Matt and I were already pretty soaked, so we decided to keep it up by taking on Tidal Wave...

...because, well, just look at the attack of the waves...

...but as you can see in the background, the lines were long, and despite it cooling down a bit, we weren't exactly in ideal weather to be waiting in line.

Since we clearly couldn't get ourselves wetter, we wanted to dry off a bit in comparison. So SkyScreamer seemed like a good ride to go to next...

...however it seemed like SkyScreamer was suffering the same reason why we didn't ride Tidal Wave; long lines. Even though the line is under a roof, the SkyScreamer operators looked to be moving pretty slowly, so it wouldn't be a good line to wait in either way.

So instead of waiting in lines, we just decided to walk around the park to take photos of rides.

While Boomerang is rough and I'm not a fan at all, it at least is pretty photogenic.

In fact, it's photogenicness (is that a word?) is probably the only reason why I acknowledge it's existence.

That, and it has a pretty cool sign.

As we walked by, we checked the wait times on and off, and it appeared Screamin' Eagle was screamin' (pun intended) for some riders so we made that our next stop.

But first, Matt was a little hungry, so we were going to get him some roasted corn... only to find out they were all out. Kinda defeats the purpose of having 'Roasted Corn' in your name, huh?

I don't like riding Larson Super Loops like Fireball, nor do I call them a coaster, but it sure looked cool at sunset.

We didn't ride River King Mine Train today, and we had a reason. It was the operators. As we walked up to ride, an op outside the sign started yelling at us and we had no idea why. It was because I was holding my phone. Why can't we have a phone even in line? He then threatened to kick us out, so we just weren't going to risk it. It was quite frustrating as well; why Screamin' Eagle was our next stop and not River King Mine Train. That one op wasn't going to ruin the day for us, so we just moved on.

Well, Screamin' Eagle was going to be our next stop, until we realized how hungry we were. We then made our next stop Mooseburger Lodge for dinner.

Gotta admit; I really liked the chicken here. Thumbs up from me!

Superman could have been a fun option, since I love drop towers...

...but a re-ride on Screamin' Eagle had been pushed back enough.

While in line for Screamin' Eagle, we noticed that all the Music In The Parks kids were gathered together for their ceremony. That was completely fine by us; a few less kids would be nice.

Something I should say, especially when I talked about the River King Mine Train op, is that Six Flags St. Louis otherwise has very good operations. See this line? It moved very quick. While some ops are better than others, that's not to say it has slow dispatches, because Six Flags St. Louis doesn't.

It seems like Boss is visible from just around anywhere in the park!

For all you big nerds out there, here's a photo of some of the brake mechanisms found on Screamin' Eagle.

Speaking of rides visible from everywhere in the park... how about the super photogenic Mr. Freeze? (that sounds kinda wrong)

I said it once, I'll say it again; I really like the eagles on the front of the Screamin' Eagle trains. It really is a nice touch and gives off a classic feel of when that was the normal thing for theme parks years ago to do.

Screamin' Eagle looks cool at any time, but in sunset the colors really become eye-catching.

Our first ride on Screamin' Eagle was in the back row, so this time around we took the front. I mentioned that during our back row ride it was running rougher than normal, and yeah, even in the front it was kinda jostly, but nonetheless I love this coaster for it's 3rd "death drop," great smoothness, (overall) and abundance of floater airtime. This is an underrated ride.

Here's a nice overview of the part of Six Flags St. Louis kind of around River King Mine Train and Colossus.

Okay, there are a lot of other Mr. Freeze photos spread throughout this update, so I have to confess that I might be addicted to taking photos of Mr. Freeze.

Colossus wasn't ready yet this season either. From what I've been told, the park has been trying to utilize a continuous-loading method of operation, so hopefully that goes well.

We're heading back for Studio Backlot for more fun. I wonder what for? Who would ever possibly think of going to Studio Backlot?

American Thunder?

Nope; if you don't remember from earlier in the update, I said we didn't get around to American Thunder. We were headed there for Mr. Freeze Reverse Blast. Don't worry though; there aren't nearly as many photos of Mr. Freeze Reverse Blast as there were during that one long, long montage.

Here's a good look at why Thunder River always has a long line like I mentioned; just look at all those happy faces. It's real crowd pleaser, especially on a hot day like this one.

Said it before, and I'll say it again. (also to prevent writer's block) Six Flags St. Louis really becomes super eye-catching during sunset.

It's almost humorous how different trains of riders can contradict the emotions of each other. Remember those train photos in the first long montage when everyone was excited? Only one person has their hands up in this train. Interesting.

You might be getting kind of tired of these, but I love taking underdog shots.

The spike seriously is one of my favorite moments on any steel coaster!

After our second ride on Mr. Freeze, we recorded this vlog together, hence why there aren't any photos of the park as we headed out.

Once we got outside of Six Flags St. Louis, waiting for Matt's parents to arrive (his dad took him but had to leave early for reasons I'm not going to into), we noticed American Thunder got stuck on the lift hill. While it's obviously impossible to make it seem super obvious, here's where it got stuck..

Luckily, within a few minutes, it was back up and running to give more riders some fun airtime.

Here's Matt patiently waiting for his parents to come by watching Coaster Studios' Expedition Everest (which is quite funny. Check it out on YouTube!)
Once Matt's parents came, it was time to go our separate ways, unfortunately. I wish Matt lived closer than 4 hours away; it would be great to just pop in and hang out every weekend, but we are working on meeting up this November at ACE's Coaster Christmas event at Silver Dollar City. I really hope that happens.

And here's a closing photo of the park's skyline. Thanks for a crowded, but very fun day Six Flags St. Louis. I hope to return soon for more rides on all our favorites, and to see Matt again as he tours his home park with us.