Thorpe Park - A Trip Report

Thorpe Park: I went to Thorpe Park on opening day (last Thursday) and rode The Swarm.

From Caroline Davis
Posted March 21, 2012 at 2:20 PM
I got to the park at 10am (opening time) on the dot, but still had to pick up my tickets from the advanced ticket booth. Fortunately there was a very small crowd at Thorpe Park. I wondered whether I should try and do all the other coasters before The Swarm (working counter clockwise) but I saw a posted wait time for the new coaster was 15 minutes. I went straight over to that side of the park, the first clue of a new coaster was a police sign, then a fire engine with smoke billowing out.

I got into the queue of The Swarm, which had the same barriers you'd expect to see at a building site (part of the apocalyptic theme). There were also video screens which were fairly impressive in portraying the story of The Swarm. The screens showed fake news broadcasts that were fairly long and varying. Hopefully enough for the inevitably long queues of the summer months. The loading station is in a "church" with the roof ripped off, which looked very good but with the English weather I was very happy it was a sunny day.

The Swarm's trains are very detailed, they are supposed to look like aliens. These aliens seem to be tarantulas that evolved to have guns instead of fangs. I rode the coaster three times, once in the centre, once at the front and once at the back. The last two times the trains got stuck in the station after the ride had finished. Not great. It was the first day of the ride being open, so hopefully they will work out the kinks soon.

The coaster is extremely smooth and I felt it had a lot more g's than I expected. Despite the position of the seats, it is closer in sensation to a flying coaster than any of type of coaster I can think of. I really enjoyed it and think it is now my favourite coaster in the park. The most impressive element is the first drop/loop.

Anybody who has heard reports about more people being turned away from this ride compared to other B&Ms, I wouldn't worry. In fact I would say the seat is slight bigger than the B&M invert in the park; Nemesis Inferno.

Other things I noticed around the park...
Colossus: Really badly maintained, as always. If you think The Incredible Hulk needs a paint job, you should see Colossus.

Nemesis Inferno: Was better than I remember it being, it's still not as good as it's sister coaster at Alton Towers but it is still a really good ride for Thorpe Park.

Saw: The Ride: For the first time I managed to keep my eyes open inside the building part of the ride. And it really isn't that bad! The coaster part is still so much fun and feels as good as it did when it first opened.

Stealth: They've gotten rid of the single rider queue, so (naturally) I feel like they have personally insulted me. Instead it is now a disabled queue. I don't see the point in that, as that entrance isn't even accessible and the ramp allowing easier access is around the other side of the station!

They've added a new kiosk which has hog roast baguettes. If you've never been to Thorpe Park, the food outlets there are either chain fast food joints (KFC, Pizza Hut, Burger King) or kiosks that sell things like hot dogs. There's one restaurant, which serves pub food which is okay.

I'll upload my pictures to flickr in a bit and post a link, if anybody is interested.

From James Rao
Posted March 22, 2012 at 5:06 AM
Thanks for the update, Caroline. Sounds like you had a nice, relaxed visit to the park. Did you loose any limbs on Swarm??? ;)

From Kelly Muggleton
Posted March 22, 2012 at 6:24 AM
Thanks Caroline! I wondered if anyone had managed to get on it yet.
I am hoping to try and go sometime before the summer hols... Fingers crossed!
Colussus seems to be in a constant state of disrepair doesn't it!

From Mike Gallagher
Posted March 22, 2012 at 7:45 AM
^^Nah, that only happens to dummies. And Caroline is no dummy.

*EDIT* Kelly snuck in on me. My dummy comment was in response to James.

Thanks for the report, Caroline. I don't get to read much about parks in Merry Olde, but if I were to make a list of the ten parks I would give my left arm (pun intended, of course)..Blackpool, Alton Towers, and Thorpe would be on it.

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