Welcome to my very first Six Flags Magic Mountain trip report of 2013. Today was the last day of the 2012 Christmas/2013 New Year holiday break, which means that with the exception of three miscellaneous Mondays, there will not be any more weekday operations until Spring Break at the end of March. It’s weekends only until then.
I’ve been to Six Flags Magic Mountain quite a bit over the last two weeks, so some of these pictures are from a couple of days ago. If you see clear blue skies in some of the pics, that wasn’t today. It’s currently cold, overcast, and threatening some more rain. With the exception of the season pass registration, which we’ll talk about, it was a pretty good day to go to the park.
I didn’t make the same mistake I made the other day. I looked for the new Gold Pass entrance so I could get into the park 10 minutes early:
It felt weird standing on the opposite side of the main gate from the Discover card entrance, where I normally go in. There was virtually nobody in the Discover line today:
Behind me, at 10:10 am, the line for the season pass registration already had multiple lines around the giant planter box in the middle of the plaza and was growing. Within another five minutes they laid out those extra barricades as more people flooded in:
I confirmed with the park that today is the last day to buy season passes that qualify for the free upgrade to Gold Passes. However, due to the overwhelming popularity of the promotion, they have extended the deadline for processing those passes from today until January 27th. Therefore, if you haven’t processed your passes yet, don’t worry. You still have three weekends to take care of it. However, I don’t recommend waiting until the 27th to do it, or you’ll likely face another crowd just like this one.
The registration line got so long that they started walking groups of people over to the old season pass registration office to try and get people through the process faster:
The Gold Pass entrance is definitely the way to go. Not only did we get in before the regular ticket holders at the main gate in the middle, but we were also in before the Discover card holders on the far right of this photo:
I’m not sure how old they are, but I noticed the other day that all the American flags around the Six Flags Plaza looked brand new. I certainly hope they bought one for the top of the Sky Tower. They’re probably just drawing straws on who gets to go up there and replace it:
From the Sky Tower, lots of Full Throttle work was continuing on and around the Superman Plaza. I might have to take back what I said the other day. From this angle, it looks like they may not have even touched the Superman logo. Looks like it just needs some new paint:
If they last for more than four hours, you should probably see your doctor:
Ohhhhh….these open holes! That hole on the right may be the only thing affecting the Superman logo, depending on how far the cut extends under the plywood:
Even though this one is topped by an open hole caution sign, it looks to me that it has already been filled in with concrete. That looks like some concrete dribble on the left as well:
Just on the opposite side of this blue fence is where the markers were located on the Gold Rusher track. It’s also where I noticed they had cleared the dirt up against the retaining wall to install some footers. I’m guessing it’s easier working from up top because the Gold Rusher track may partially be in the way from down below:
All of the rebar that was sitting up on Samurai Summit is gone, presumably dropped into all the newly dug footer wells. You can still see where the barricades are blocking the area off in the bottom-left, but since there’s nothing below there other than Superman, no problem:
I didn’t see any heavy equipment on the back path, but you can sure tell they’ve been there:
You can just make out the rebar cages sticking up out of the wells they are sitting in:
Is there something wrong with the bottom-half of the cover over Superman’s maintenance area? It looks like it’s sagging quite a bit:
Does anyone have any information about what is going on with Ben & Jerry’s? I heard a rumor that they were being removed from all Six Flags parks, leaving behind just Cold Stone. The sign on the door says this location is closed. Not sure if it’s just a seasonal thing:
It’s hard to tell looking in the window if all the boxes on the counters are filled with stuff being hauled out or supplies being brought in. There’s still a live register:
A couple of the old trams have been moved around to behind Apocalypse, including the wrapped M&Ms and Skittles trams. The word I’m getting is that the park has actually sold them. Can you believe that? They were already used when the park bought them over 40 years ago. The park will be keeping the two short, van-based trams to haul employees around the park during Fright Fest and for other internal needs:
It looks like the fifth new bus has arrived, leaving just one to show up:
What I’ve learned about these buses is that they were bought new for the 2002 Winter Olympics, held in Salt Lake City, as part of the massive transportation system that was needed for the games. They used a total of 680 buses to shuttle everyone where they needed to go, many of which were on loan from municipalities all over the country. Once the games were over, I’m guessing there was a massive surplus of buses that went up for auction. I suspect that Six Flags got a pretty sweet deal, which is why they went with these instead of the typical amusement park trams. These were probably a fraction of the cost of new trams. I’m curious how many Six Flags bought in total and what other parks we’ll see them rolled out in besides New England and Magic Mountain:
Here’s a guy refurbishing Roaring Rapids rafts out back:
With many of the leaves off the trees for winter, I spotted this little critter from the Sky Tower, cruising underneath Tatsu. I think it’s just a squirrel:
I’ll cover this in a dedicated future post, but the entire on-ride photography program has changed as of the first of the year. At least the pricing structure has. The one and only USB key that will be used for 2013 is red and looks like this:
You could win….A BRAND NEW CAR!!!
As I left the park today, I couldn’t help but notice all of the cars idling along the drop-off area. I’m wondering if these are parents who dropped their kids off to “quickly” run in and process their season pass, thinking today was the last day to get the free upgrade to Gold. I sure hope they have a full tank of gas, because they’re going to be sitting there for awhile: