I’ll admit it: I’m a sucker for a good, chilled out ride at a theme park. It’s nice to have a little time sitting down, preferably in the shade in the midst of a hectic day of thrill seeking. At Seaworld (www.seaworld.com.au) on the Gold Coast, this ride was the Bermuda Triangle for me. It was an old, slow boat ride with some physical special effects and a little drop into water.
And then, like all good things, it came to an end. The ride closed for maintenance and never reopened. This seems to be how most theme parks go about decommissioning rides. Having not held an annual pass for Seaworld in a couple of years, I was pretty disappointed that I wouldn’t get to go on the Bermuda Triangle ride again. I really like my indoor relaxation rides. I was a cross between curious and resentful toward what they had replaced it with.
Well, Seaworld, I forgive you! The Storm Coaster (http://seaworld.com.au/rides-and-attractions/rides/storm-coaster.aspx) is FAN-TASTIC. (There’s a video of the ride on the Seaworld website, but it’s not 100% accurate towards the end, based on my experience.)
I went to SeaWorld with my husband Ben, but he can’t go on all rides, so it was on to the Storm Coaster solo for me! Gulp. It was a great day at the park – very quiet and with basically no queues anywhere. In fact, the queue was so small that I was ushered straight on to the roller coaster the second I got up to it! There was a train (boat?) nearly ready to leave and since I was on my own, I filled the spare seat at the front. Yep. At the front. Not only did I miss that waiting time that lets you feel better (or worse) about getting on a new roller coaster, I was ushered straight on and straight to the front. Well, I guess some days life doesn’t let you do things by halves.
I was strapped in and at the top of the chain lift before I knew it. Since Ben was down below with my iPhone, I’ll let some photos he took tell the story of my first ride on the Storm Coaster:
You spend the last part of the ride ‘blind’ – I don’t mean that you will be blinded, but once you go down the big drop your vision is obscured by darkness, mists of water and then ALL THE WATER. Oh yeah, you’ll get slightly wet on this ride. Slightly meaning DRENCHED.
Ride Tip 1: Wear your swimmers!! (Togs, board shorts, bathers, whatever you call them, wear them!)
And I couldn’t explore a new ride without taking a few videos, now could I? Below is the coaster after it comes out of the big drop. I was standing on the entryway bridge:
Sea World Storm Coaster External
I took full advantage of the lack of queues and went on the ride twice. The exit path actually has a little viewing area where you can watch the ride do the big splash down. Be warned: you can still get wet there! It was too wet to pull out my camera on viewing area, so I stopped on a different part of the path and captured the big splash:
Ride Tip 2: People who can’t go on the ride can ask the staff member to let them go in the exit path and watch from the viewing platform inside.
As we were walking around the park afterwards, Ben asked me if it was my new favourite roller coaster. And you know what? I couldn’t think of one I liked better. The Storm Coaster is very smooth. It has great big turns and huge heights to let you see the rest of the park. It has a great balance between fast and so fast you can’t enjoy it. And it’s also a boat ride that soaks you. That really hits all the criteria for me!
Have you been on the Storm Coaster? What makes a roller coaster good for you?