Archive for the ‘Daytrips’ Category

A Visit to Six Flags America

Steph and I took a drive down to Largo, Maryland (or thereabouts) to
visit Six Flags America today. Back in the bygone mists of time it was Wild
World, an independently operated water park who’s main appeal seemed to
be that it was that it was fairly convenient to Baltimore and DC. Since
then it was purchased and turned into a Six Flags park, with another more
recent expansion adding a bunch of new rides.

The main attraction for Steph was the newly remodeled water park. She enjoyed a
couple spins on the big slides and we both enjoyed a trip down the
Renegade Rapids. I’m not much on water rides (can’t swim, wear glasses,
cowardly) but that was fun.

The last time I was on a roller coaster was in the early 90’s, the Rebel Yell
at King’s Dominion. That was sort of a family tradition dating back to
when our family visited the park in the 70’s and 80’s. I figured it was
time to try another coaster, so I took a ride on The Wild One.
It’s a classic wooden coaster that began life in 1917 as the "Giant
Coaster" in Paragon Park, Mass. It’s been modified and rebuilt a bunch
of times since then, of course, but it still carries the reputation of
its original incarnation. It was really a lot of fun. I may even get up
the nerve to try their neo-classic wooden coaster ROAR next time. They also have lots of fancy metal coasters that really don’t appeal to me.

As for the park itself, it was crowded and they nickel-and-dime you to
death for every little thing. In other words, pretty much like every
other amusement park I’ve ever been to. And Saturday in late August is
about the busiest time for a water park.

The food and the food service were just plain awful, though, and
there’s no excuse for that. The kids behind the counters wandered off,
ignored customers, and took for-freakin-ever to complete simple orders.
I had the dryest and blandest cheeseburger I’ve ever eaten, complete
with a side of cold, tasteless fries. The food itself was overpriced
too, as expected, but I could live with that if it were actually tasty.
And, of course, they don’t let you bring food or drinks into the park
with you. Eat somewhere else first, and if you do get hungry just get
something from a concession booth around the park.

It was a fun day. There are other rides that both of us would like to try. We’ll probably go again if we can get another discounted admission somewhere. I’m sure Steph will have some comments of her own to add.

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The cats and I were startled just now by a pattering on the windows. I looked outside to see little pea-sized hailstones all over the porch. It’s slacked off but an occasional patter indicates it’s not quite over.

Weather today has been strange in general. Earlier this afternoon, Steph and I decided to take advantage of a nice warm, spring day to take some photos over at Liberty Dam. Steph used my EOS-D30, I used my 10D. We got there later than we expected but still got some good pics before it began to get dark and chilly. As we drove back home we saw some really interesting looking industrial buildings at the LaFarge quarry. We were able to stop at a convenient parking lot along the road and I got some nice twilight, existing-light pics using my trusty 50mm 1.4 lens.

Our timing must have been better than we thought. The weather deteriorated rapidly right after we started home again, and as we drove back into Carroll County we hit a heavy rainstorm. It’s been raining off and on since we got back to Westminster. And hailing now, too.

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