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Kolmarden Trip Reports

Discussion in 'CoasterForce Live' started by Hixee, Aug 21, 2016.

  1. Jordanovichy

    Jordanovichy Credit Whore 2016 Staff Member Social Media Team CF Award Winner 2016

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    I had a fab weekend...18 new coasters is testament to that!

    Helix and Wildfire the clear highlights, I might write a proper trip report one day, but don't get your hopes up...cheers everyone!
     
  2. ThomVD

    ThomVD Well-Known Member

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    So happy to see everybody so enthusiastic about Helix! It truly is amazing <3 I'm so sad I didn't get the chance to meet up with you guys.
     
  3. Chris Brown

    Chris Brown Mr CoasterForce 2016 CF Award Winner 2016

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    Day 2 Kolmarden Zoo

    After a quick breakfast at the hotel we set off on the beautiful drive to Kolmarden Zoo, the drive itself goes right through the heart of Sweden along the shore of Vattern, Europe’s 6th largest lake, and is one of the most scenic drives I’ve experienced. The road itself gives a great view of the Scandinavian countryside and all the small fishing villages.

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    Soon we were driving through the typical Swedish town of Kolmarden that sits on a smaller lake that can be seen at various points in the park. We cranked up our arrival music, wound the windows down and pulled into the car park with ‘dancing queen’ blaring much to the enjoyment of the others that had already arrived.

    We wandered over to the entrance where we were escorted across the park for our ERT session on Wildfire. Jesus Christ what a trek. After approximately 15 minutes of hard walking and no sign of the coaster the simultaneous groan as the lift hill appeared above the trees must have been a rather awkward experience for our tour guide!

    Now I’d never really seen pictures of the surrounding area of the coaster but it is rather amusing, the only things nearby are a small roller skater and a really bland looking pirate ship, that’s all, then there’s just this monstrous RMC winding on and around the natural rock face, quite a sight to behold! We jumped straight on the coaster and were sent round for our first lap in amongst cheers from the ride staff. The atmosphere was great, everyone experiencing this incredible coaster for the first time with the same shared enthusiasm and excitement. We got 6 laps and it was incredible, the view from the top of the lift is staggering, the scenery surrounding this park could well be some of the best possible! The first 3 elements are simply out of this world, the drop headchopper into the overbank into the mind boggling zero g stall followed by the outward banked wave turn really get this thing off to an incredible start. What then occurs are a mixture of crazy forces, ejector air times, winding turns and crazy zero g rolls. This ride really is great. My only gripe is the hill after the last inversion, it’s too tall and really kills the speed, and it didn’t give any airtime and just killed the pace. You then drop into a small snake run section then go flying into the brakes. Although I wasn’t impressed by this section to begin with by the end of the day it was flying over that last hill which made the ride so much better, just before we left the park the ride really woke and just came together perfectly. I can only imagine what this thing would be like in the rain or late at night!

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    Its kinda hard to get any decent photos of this coaster which is a real shame. There are no points at which you can get underneath it as it’s all fenced off. Below is about the only possible angle which is a shame.

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    After our Wildfire session we had a mooch around the zoo and headed to the cable car safari, I’d read about the cable car safari online and its just brilliant, a really good idea by the park to scrap the old car style safari drive through for a quiet less intrusive sky ride. The ride itself lasts approximately 35 minutes and explores numerous animal exhibits; lions, rhinos, bears, giraffes, antelopes, moose and lots more, its pleasant and relaxing and also gives some outstanding views. At one point you can just see wildfire poking out the tree’s with the lake in the back ground. Below is a picture I got of that.

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    Now I'm not usually a fan of zoo’s, I often end up saddened by the animals and their enclosures and always ending up regretting my decision to fund such cruelty but this place is different. This is how zoo’s should be. All of the enclosures are HUGE. Animals are mixed with other species in magnificent enclosures, there are no lone animals that I saw and nothing made me feel sad. The park itself is just enormous, I genuinely didn’t have a clue where I was when we walked around and explored. You can tell they are aiming to make this place a sort of super resort with the zoo and the increasing number of rides, its obvious they expect to expand the ride selection and increase guest numbers as the queue for wildfire is huge, this could quite easily hold a 2 hour queue although it currently peaks at approx 15 minutes. We stopped for lunch and got to soak up the gorgeous view while snacking on a good old buffet, the restaurant was on a platform which looked out over the lake and as I keep yacking about the view but really does have to be praised.

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    This was short lived as whilst I was eating I managed to get stung on the lip by a twatty wasp. This park has a serious wasp problem. The :emoji_zipper_mouth: are everywhere and it’s really off-putting, the majority of the group gave up trying to eat outside in the sun because of the pesky things.

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    After a few more rides on wildfire and another trip round in the cable car we headed off in the hope of getting to our next park, Gronalund, in time for some evening rides in the sun…

    Next up Gronlund!
     
  4. jayjay

    jayjay Well-Known Member

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    The whole weekend was fantastic, even faffing about with Stockholm tourist stuff. I'll do some write ups of my add-ons and the actual Swedish part when I get round to it.
     
  5. caffeine_demon

    caffeine_demon Well-Known Member

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    I was just thinking that liseberg really needs a second hand pinfari....
     
  6. Sanchezmran

    Sanchezmran Well-Known Member

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    This is a gorgeous picture. I can hardly see the horizon line!

    Seriously, I hadn't really gotten a sense of how beautiful the area is until now. And it's nice to hear that the zoo is pretty impressive.
     
  7. Chris Brown

    Chris Brown Mr CoasterForce 2016 CF Award Winner 2016

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    Damn I knew this would happen! That certain photo may or may not be stolen from google images...
     
  8. Ben

    Ben Best SM Team Member 2016 CF Award Winner 2016

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    Not the only photo you stole though is it.

    Good job I'm not Rach ;)
     
  9. LiveForTheLaunch

    LiveForTheLaunch Well-Known Member

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    T'was great to see familiar faces and to meet some of you for the first time! I had a great time in Sweden.. Wildfire is my new #1 and Balder is quite up there as well. Although Helix was good I just couldn't see all the hype over it! Thanks for organizing everything, Ian!

    I am away until September 11th so I doubt I'll have a trip report until then.
     
  10. ECG

    ECG East Coast(er) General Administrator CF Award Winner 2016

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    Why did I know that was coming? :p :lol:

    Great to see that everyone had such a fun time. Can't wait until next year and I get my old ass over there.
     
  11. Rachel

    Rachel Well-Known Member

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    So glad I ended up coming along to this trip after all. I think if I hadn’t, and with everyone’s social media updates over the weekend, I would have cried. Big thank you to Ian for the organisation and for the perks and to Sue for doing some pretty tiring drives. I know Liseberg and Grona weren’t technically part of the live, but I’m going to cover the whole weekend in this report. This may be long, sorry haha.

    Liseberg

    I flew out to Gothenburg on the Friday morning, arriving at the park around 2pm. I went to Liseberg last year, so there was no cred anxiety on my behalf. I met with the group and waited whilst some people got the kiddie creds and then we headed over to Kanonen. I was going to sit this one out, but I was itching to ride something so went on it. It’s still dreadful, it’s the wrong coaster to be packed into such a tight space and the speed is uncomfortable. Next up was Balder, I spent the queue trying to convince Ian that it is a good coaster. I know it’s a bit repetitive, but it’s such good fun and so re-rideable – surely that’s what it’s all about?

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    I hadn’t ridden the log flume previously and it was a warm afternoon so decided to give it a try. It’s amazing, the double drop was a cool surprise and got us all a lot wetter than I’d expected. We rode the skyroller, where I failed to get any sort of spin so gave up and just admired the views of the city. The screaming swing was also good, really floaty airtime and pretty stomach churning.

    Atmosfear, was up next. It’s probably one of my favourite drop towers, it drops and then halfway down it feels as though you start being pulled down even faster. The ears popping as you brake is also a weird feeling. Amazing though.

    Finally we were heading to the main attraction of the park, Helix. Was it going to be as good as I remembered? Yes, yes it was. We rode it a couple of times in a row using the fastpasses that Ian had kindly arranged for us. It’s such a fantastic ride that offers everything a coaster goon could want – launches, airtime, inversions, the lot! There’s a section in the middle where you’re going round a few corners and then into the short tunnel, and I couldn’t believe how fast we were going. It’s definitely gotten faster since I rode it last year. I was so pleased to hear that all the people who had ridden it for the first time that day loved it as much as I do.

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    Another thing that I hadn’t tried last time was the horror walk through, since it was an upcharge and I couldn’t be arsed. This time it was included on the wristband, so I decided to give it a try. I was made to go at the front of my little group, we set off and I was so impressed with how amazingly themed the whole thing was. It’s themed to a haunted hotel and the detail is spot on in every single section. It’s kind of scary – mostly actors jumping out at you but they did a pretty good job. NHS Jordan physically jumped during one of the scares and it was hilarious.

    Some people did the rapids and then we split for dinner, some of us deciding to quickly give Lisbergbanen a go. It’s a classic but a goodie, I love the way it interacts with the hill and all the other rides in the area.

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    After dinner, the park was starting to get dark. Liseberg is one of the park’s that’s a beauty in the dark. The lights remind me of a funfair, but with none of the tackiness. Our first night ride was on Balder, I’ve always sat at the back so decided to the front row for once and see if it still ranks so highly. It does, the ride was fantastic and being at the front made me appreciate just how steep the first drop is.

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    We finished the day whoring Helix for some night-time rides. It’s amazing in the dark and I love seeing the trains all lit up just whizzing round the track. I never realised before just how intense it is at the back, I actually felt a little light headed after one go. I ended my day with a front row ride. It was the perfect way to end what had been a fantastic day and Howie and I did a little fist bump on the brake run to celebrate.

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    We set off on the drive to Jonkoping for our first hotel, finally getting to sleep around 1am.

    Kolmarden

    After 5 hours sleep, we woke up stupidly early to begin our 2 hour drive to Kolmarden. It was worth it though as we had ERT on Wildfire to look forward to. The drive took us along some roads next to a lake and the approach into Kolmarden was also stunning. We arrived at 9am and joined up with the rest of the goons to head into the park. It was around a 15 minute walk to the coaster, there was a real buzz of excitement within the group. Finally we were there and it was time for the ERT to begin.

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    I was worried that my expectations were too high for this, but I needn’t have been. It was absolutely incredible and has slotted in nicely at number 2. Over the course of the day I rode it 8 times, front, middle and back and every single time I got a fantastic ride. I think I prefer the back as the airtime is stronger, especially on the airtime hills towards the end, but the first drop in the front seat was also incredible, a proper “oh sh*t” moment. And where do I even begin on the inverted zero-g stall? What the hell was that?! It’s so surreal, hangtime is normally uncomfortable but this felt amazing. It almost didn’t feel like an inversion, like how the hell was I getting airtime when I’m upside down. It’s without a doubt my favourite section of any rollercoaster and then it’s followed by the amazing sideways airtime. The ride slows down a little in the middle…..but that would probably be my only criticism, it soon picks up again into an intense heartline roll and a few twists and turns before the brake run. We were all clapping with joy at the end. I don’t know who decided it was a good idea to plonk a massive RMC into a zoo in in the middle of Sweden….but I’m very glad they did.

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    The rest of the day was a really chilled out one. We did the 2 kiddie creds and then spent some time looking around the animal exhibits. The highlight was the skyways safari, which was a half hour skyride around some really impressive animal enclosures. We saw bears, lions, giraffes the lot. The highlight of course were the views of wildfire and the surrounding lakes and forest, it was truly breathtaking.

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    We went to the buffet restaurant for lunch, the variety of food was good, shame you couldn’t just sit down and enjoy it without being attacked by a million wasps!! We did the Safari again to let our food go down before a couple of more goes on Wildfire and calling it a day.

    Grona Lund / Stockholm

    Since some of the Group were flying out the next evening and wouldn’t get a chance to do Grona at night, a decision was made to go there that evening instead. The drive to the park was fine until we hit stressful Stockholm where every single road the sat nav sent us down appeared to be blocked off. This was where Left Bank Two became a thing. For some reason which I can’t remember, everytime we were having a driving nightmare, Owain played the Left Bank Two music. I cried with laughter, but it was kind of a “you had to be there” thing.

    Anyway after finally getting to the park and parking up we went to get our wristbands and made our way into the park, stopping first at Tuff-Tuff Taget. It was merely a +1, but the ride op was fabulous. Next up was Jetline, another brilliant Swedish Schwarzkopf. It was a lot faster than I expected and the first two drops were really good. Over to Twister next and I was really impressed at just how much coaster they had packed into such a tight space, when I thought it was coming to an end it just seemed to keep on going. I was a little underwhelmed by the coaster experience though, it just doesn’t really do anything other than a few mild pops of airtime. I was slightly better the next evening in the rain, but nothing to blow my mind.

    The group re-formed to go on the Ghost Train. It was fab, it had vibrating seat goodness, a funny man on the toilet and couple of decent jump scares. There was a 40 minute queue for Kvasten – gross but it passed quickly. It’s a Vekoma suspended family coaster, it was nice and smooth but nothing to write home about.

    Next up was the ride I’d been dreading – Insane. I know it had to be done though for the +1. I was bricking it as it climbed to the top. To start with it seemed okay – Howie and I foolishly remarked how it wasn’t so bad. Oh how wrong we were, it soon started spinning and at one point dropped when we were upside down. I felt like my brain had just exploded, it was awful. Possibly the worst coaster i’ve ever ridden.

    The Wild Mouse was next, which apparently is the tallest in the world. It wasn’t too bad, I liked that it didn’t have the boring section that most Wild Mouse’s have where with all the painful corners.

    I’d heard really good things about the fun house so was excited to give it a go. I had a mong moment on the moving steps and caused them to do an emergency stop. Never mind. Highlights were the moving bouncy slide thing, all the CFer’s on the spinning wheel and the slide at the end. So much fun.

    We finished off with a ride on the Star Flyer. I’d wanted to do this at night, and the views did not disappoint. Bloody freezing up there , but totally worth it.

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    We did have 1 more cred to ride, the Tivoli. We ran to it from the Star Flyer but it was closed . Nevermind, we had tomorrow to come back and get it. With that we drove back to the hotel, only to be met with double bed faff, before finally settling down at around midnight.

    Since we now had a spare day on the Sunday, some sightseeing in Stockholm was to be done. I had no idea what was in Stockholm and nothing really stuck out for me, so I just followed what other people were doing. We had a little wander around some streets and churches before splitting – some of us choosing to do the boat on the river and others heading to the boat museum. Once we were done with the boat Jordan, Conor, Chris and I found a beer and burgers place and had a long, lazy lunch, a lovely chilled way to spend a rainy afternoon. We looked around some more of the city before splitting as they had to catch their flight and I was off back to Grona Lund.

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    Stockholm as a city was a bit mediocre. I think I was expecting it to be really cool and have a cosmopolitan vibe, but it was just really bland. The crap weather didn’t help – but its ticked off my list now and I don’t think I’ll be heading back in any hurry.

    Anyway I met back up with my fellow car sharers and we headed on into Grona (for free again, yay). We had an hour to kill to rode the Tivoli, Jetline, Twister, the drop tower, the ghost train, the fun house and finishing off on the Love Tunnel. We headed out for some food at TGI’s, before going back to Owain and Jayjay’s hostel with them. It was around midnight at this point and me and Sue knew we had 3 hours to kill before we left Stockholm. Luckily the hostel had a communal area with sofas and a computer so me and Sue just chilled, talking away the hours and watching POV’s.

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    The time soon passed and we went for a walk to wake ourselves up and get some fresh air before the drive. As we stood and watched the rest of the city sleeping across the river, I reflected on the weekend. There’s no way I would have ever found myself standing in Stockholm at 3am if I hadn’t found CF and it’s because of this site that I have these weird and surreal experiences. You guys truly are amazing, thank you for such an incredible weekend. Until next time.

    <3
     
  12. Howie

    Howie Well-Known Member

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    Love these night time pictures;

    I arrived at 10.45pm on the Thursday night and my first view of Helix was from the motorway in the taxi, just a streak of pure white light racing round the hillside. Quite a sight!

    And haa - that moment on the Zacspin. "Hey, this isn't so bad...... WHOA, yes it bloody well is!"
    Funny. Sort of...
     
  13. Smithy

    Smithy Well-Known Member

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    I :emoji_zipper_mouth: hate and :emoji_zipper_mouth: love reading these European trip reports because they always sound ridiculously amazing. Liseberg looks incredible at night.
     
  14. Howie

    Howie Well-Known Member

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    For those of you that didn't go to the boat museum, this is what it looked like;

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    It's called the Vassa, and it's the same sort of boat as the Mary Rose, except it's in better nick. Looks a bit like the Black Pearl.

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    Stockholm itself? Well, it's a European capital city innit? Call me cynical, but once you've been to one of 'em...
    Stockholm, Berlin, Brussels, Amsterdam... aren't they all pretty much interchangeable? They all have pretty buildings and waterways:

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    This one had a Union Jack flying on the front of it. Always worthy of a pic:

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    As always, there were various museums. This is the Nobel Museum. We didn't go in.

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    We watched the changing of the guards at some royal palace. It was very meh:

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    Goons were there:

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    There were lots of Pokéstops. Local children laughed at us for playing kids games:

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    Finally, Conor has the best travel bag EVER:

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    That's pretty much all the pictures I took. There was a couple from Kolmarden the day before, like this one:

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    But I'm sure every other attendee will have taken dozens of pictures of the amazing Wildfire and will post them in due course, so you don't need anymore from me.
    Well, maybe just one more...

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    :--D
     
  15. Ian

    Ian From CoasterForce Staff Member Administrator Moderator Social Media Team CF Award Winner 2016

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    There is something special about the Euro Lives. The beauty of exploring new places and parks, the excitement of not being in the UK, the long drives, the soulless industrial estate hotels ("That's dialogicallllll!"), the generosity of European parks, the quality of the parks ("why can't the uk have nice things?"). It's a goon holiday.

    I'm glad I did the Vasa but I couldn't stop thinking it was theming. I know it's real but I've spent so much time in theme parks, stuff like that registers as Disney/Universal theming. It was fab.
     
  16. DelPiero

    DelPiero Well-Known Member

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    So glad everyone loved Wildfire, I'll be back there in a week \:D/

    I'll also be going to Grona one evening, where did everyone park there? The car park to the north?
     
  17. Ian

    Ian From CoasterForce Staff Member Administrator Moderator Social Media Team CF Award Winner 2016

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    We used the car park bang next to it. It was packed but you should get a space if you hang about. It's fairly expensive but ideal for convenience!
     
  18. Howie

    Howie Well-Known Member

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    Or, a short walk further north, there's a big museum with on-road parking in front of it, but whatever you do, make sure you park on the side of the sign that the arrow points to.

    Otherwise you get a parking ticket. 650kr!
    Trust me, I know...
     
  19. Lofty

    Lofty Social Media Team Staff Member Social Media Team

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    That's just over what we paid for a taxi from Central Station to the park WOMP WOMP.
     
  20. Ben

    Ben Best SM Team Member 2016 CF Award Winner 2016

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    Fun fact - the taxi from the station cost more than my flight back from Stockholm with BA.
     

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