We've gotten our first look at the new coaster trains for Knott's Berry Farm's refurbished MonteZOOMa: The Forbidden Fortress.
Knott's revealed the trains in a teaser post on its YouTube channel today. Let's look carefully.
Are those "comfort collars" we see? The rebuilt looping coaster doesn't have any lateral moves or forces, so that should alleviate what seems to be the most common complaint about these restraints. But comfort collars are often associated with slower loading times due to the nature of getting under and out of the restraint. This shuttle coaster is a single-train operation, so capacity is already going to be issue. We will have to wait for its debut next year to see how the new trains factor into whatever the new wait times for this coaster will be.
Knott's closed the former Montezooma's Revenge earlier this year to rebuild the aging 1978 Schwarzkopf shuttle loop coaster. The park revealed the coaster's new name and backstory during parent company Cedar Fair's 2023 attraction news dump last week: New Coasters, Refreshed Lands Coming to Cedar Fair Parks.
The coaster now will include a randomized launch sequence and its queue will get story upgrades about doomed treasure hunters searching for Montezuma's gold. No opening date yet.
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How are they going to fit a fortress around that attraction?
When I first saw the car in the video, I thought, "Oh, they got new cars for Jaguar."
There's a fair amount of space on either side of the station if they actually remove the existing (and aging) structure. My guess is ... they're not going to do that and will instead add a facade on the existing structure.
Hoping to be pleasantly surprised, though. My biggest hope for this attraction is that they improve the load/unload procedure, which was a major hassle for the previous attraction (the station was built backward, effectively). We'll see!
I hate that everyone is calling any sort of shoulder strap a "comfort collar." These are vest restraints similar to those found on Emperor or Wonder Woman, and should not impact loading significantly over a simple lapbar system. Why are they necessary? From what I was told, the force of the backwards launch exceeds what California will permit without an upper body restraint. I'm personally more concerned that the trains are being done by a company called Kumbak, as my previous experience with their trains was not at all pleasant.
As for the project as a whole, I'm cautiously optimistic but admittedly pretty skeptical. I can't say everything I've heard here, but there's been some eyebrow raising going on among me and my enthusiast friends. I hope it winds up being an improvement, but I think calling the new Montezooma a new ride rather than a refurbishment would probably be appropriate.
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Booooo, this singlehandedly killed any ounce of excitement I had for this project. Every coaster i've ridden with these restraints, which is a lot, has been pretty much killed by them. And that goes for any kind of vest restraint as well (except for B&M flyers where they are necessary). These kind of restraints are not tall people friendly to say the least.