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The end of an era... Alton Towers 17/09/2011


Giga Poster
With me going to uni in a couple of weeks, my cousin and I headed to Towers for the last time before I go. I took a few photos but not many and they were only with my phone, though there’s one that I really like.

Anyway, we got there at around 25 to 10 and headed straight to Nemesis as usual. We grabbed a couple of back rows before heading to Air ready for it to open at 10. Nemesis was as forceful as ever and still remains as one of my favourite rides.

We got to Air just as the queue opened and remarkably both stations were operating and we were on in minutes! Back row here as well and I think it was the first train of the day from the right hand side station as everyone seemed to head to the front row queue. I enjoyed it as always, much better that there was very little wait.

Nemesis was still walk on so we hopped back on for another back row. As we were going over the first corkscrew a leaf or something went in my mouth, so I spent most of the ride trying to get it out. :lol:

Next up was Duel which was also walk on. The guns turn off really early these days which is so annoying seeing as there are now loads of oranges in the last room. We got ok scores with both mid 60,000s.

After we walked down to RMT and got on the back row for which was, I now realise, my 50th ride on it. We still had a bit of time before the Rapids opened so headed back on for another go sitting somewhere in between the middle and the back of the train.

We were one of the first on the Rapids and there were a few points where it looked like there was going to be a big splash but none materialised. The waterfalls got us quite wet though, so we headed to the Flume afterwards. This was walk on and got me pretty wet with the final drop and sprinklers. I also realised with the talk of a coaster taking its place or whatever how much space it actually takes up.

Afterwards we headed for Oblivion to find a slightly bigger queue than expected. It wasn’t too bad though and after around 15-20 minutes we were on the back row. When we were on the turn at the top, my cousin noticed a phone on the floor of the row in front. So I shouted: “Have you dropped your phone?” There was no reply; I’m assuming they were too focused on the drop. :lol: Yet I think it must have been one of theirs or else it would have fallen backwards on the lift. Anyway, as the train was held for what must have been less than a second the phone fell forwards and I’m assuming it went down the hole so I guess someone’s lost a phone yet nobody seemed to inquire afterwards. :?

We were both pretty hungry by now so we went to Burger King in Cloud Cuckoo Land. We would have taken the shortcut through the Towers but it was closed because of Scarefest preparations. :( On the way we saw Hex queuing outside, implying that the park wasn’t as empty as we had experienced in the morning.

This was found to be true as we walked in a Rita queue almost full to the brim with all extensions open. We turned straight back around and headed for Thirteen. The queue board said 75 minutes though it wasn’t even at the entrance so we thought it couldn’t be. With a combination of what seemed to be slow operation and the first of a lot of heavy rain for the day, it turned out to be a very long queue of about 85 minutes. I don’t remember September ever being so busy. :( Anyway, we got put in row 8 (annoying that they still assign rows and there always seems to be someone on the other side for the back row :evil: ) and got thrown over the first drop, it really caught me by surprise with a loose restraint.

By now most of the big rides had long queues of 60 minutes plus. We headed to Sonic Spinball and got told at the entrance by a member of staff that the queue was an hour. From experience the queue looked about 20 minutes so this really confused me. It ended being a bit longer than first expected due to hail and heavy rain stopping and slowing operation but it still wasn’t an hour. I’ve seen this before outside Spinball with them telling you the queue is longer than it is then trying to sell Fastracks, but this guy was just giving you totally false information. :?


After the rain had passes we got a really good ride on it though. There was loads of spin with 3 in the car as it was still running on reduced capacity and felt faster than normal. I fancied a pancake so we walked over to the place in Mutiny Bay. On the way, I got this shot which I love:


I was 2 rides away from my 150th ride on Nemesis so we made our way to Forbidden Valley. However, once we got there the queues for both Air and Nemesis were massive. It started hammering it down so I just sat underneath the umbrella by the café to eat while my cousin got a drink. When he got back, we deliberated what to do and decided on another ride on Duel. We got there and the queue was about 10 minutes which wasn’t too bad seeing as most rides were really busy.

It was raining on and off all day, so to dry off a bit we went in Sharkbait Reef. Spent about half an hour in here; I think it’s pretty cool. We spent most of the time looking at the enormous zebra shark.

I think we had about an hour left until closing, and we still wanted to get on Rita. As we got there the queue looked much shorter so we joined but all the extensions were open so we spent several minutes walking through empty queue. :roll: Anyway we were queuing for about 20 minutes then there was the announcement that it had broken down and they recommend us doing other rides. We decided to wait a bit, and with about 10 minutes until closing they just gave everyone priority passes available on Nemesis, Air, Ripsaw, Rita and Oblivion. Yet we were closest to Thirteen so we went in the queue expecting it to be walk on but it had a queue so we couldn’t be bothered as we wanted to go in Towers Trading before we left.

I didn’t realised the extent of the merchandise available until today with the sheer amount in ride shops and then in Towers Trading. We spotted someone wearing a Nemesis t-shirt earlier on and I was really tempted to get one but the queue was massive and we were getting picked up at quarter to 6 so I decided against it in the end.

In the end it was a brilliant if wet day. We seemed to do hardly anything in the afternoon which always seems to happen but we did a load in the morning so we didn’t mind. Alton Towers has been a place that I’ve visited a hell of a lot over the past few years and I have some really great memories from there; I’ve clocked up over 50 visits in the last 4 years. It really is a great place and I’ve really enjoyed visiting it regularly. Here’s a shot leaving, thought I might as well get it as I’ve never taken a photo of the corkscrews’ new location:


Ride count:

Nemesis x3 (Back rows)
Air x1 (Back row)
Duel x2
RMT x2 (Back row)
Rapids x1
Flume x1
Oblivion x1 (Back row)
Thirteen x1
Spinball x1
Sharkbait Reef x1


CF Legend
Where you going to uni?
When I go to uni a week today I'll be quite close to the Towers so will get to go more than once a year. :p

I've also noticed there seems to be a bit more merch which is good as most the stuff at Alton seemed to be cheap stuff I didn't want. I've seen a Th13teen keyring (like an actual key) that I want to get when I go to Scarefest next month. :)
Nice trip report and I like that photos of the towers across the lake.


Giga Poster
^^Thanks for the comment. :)

^I'm going to Cambridge, St John's College. And that's cool, where you going? You should have a good time being close to Towers. I think I saw that keyring, they do loads of keyring stuff now, saw loads of them in the Oblivion shop. And it's about time Nemesis had its own shop, there's so much merchandise for it now.


Mega Poster
Nice report, I enjoyed reading it. I was there on the Friday and to be honest, I think you managed to get more done, even though the park was pretty empty. Th13teen was down all day, Rita was down most of the day and Air + Oblivion were on and off. I think you picked the better day to go :p

I've not been in Towers Trading for a while now because I always seem to end up being stuff I don't want :lol: But I think it's great that they're finally doing some merchandise for Nemesis.

Good luck with Uni and everything. I'm off to Sheffield Uni this year, but since I live in Sheffield anyway, nothing will change with my Towers trips. I'm sure I'll still be able to get a few in.


Giga Poster
^Unlucky, I think Air was closed yesterday at some point and as I've mentioned Rita also broke down. Apparently it failed to launch which happens quite often and has happened to me when I've been in the train in the station.

And yeah, they've got LOADS of merchandise now, including Nemesis stuff.

Good luck to you as well, I've got a few mates going to Sheffield and it was one of the universities I applied to and I liked it so I'm sure it'll be awesome. :--D


Mega Poster
^ Yeah, the last few times I've been Rita has had a few 'difficulties'. It could have been something to do with failing to launch on Friday too actually, one of the engineers did seem to be sat on the launch track (literally sat lol) for a while.

Looks like next time I go I'll have to have a proper look in Towers Trading then. I've been wanting something Nemesis related for a while now.


Hyper Poster
We were there Saturday as well, A-Kid and myself, it was a strange day with the rain and we actually arrived about the same time. We headed for Th13teen first, was a bit of a mistake really as we thought but found out it was only going to be running 2 trains all day we thought was prob a good idea. We did Rita next front row, Rita seemed to be running very well, then headed to Forbidden Valley for Nemesis and Air, we decided Air first, and here was our first mistake, it broke down within minuits of getting into the queue, we stayed and got a bit further, right into the nearside station only 4 trains from getting on Front, then it got stuck, they had to evac train, even the brake run, now that was strange as never seen what they do to evac in brakerun before. We got priority passes, but by this time had wasted an hour.
We went to Nemesis next and got 2 single riders, only one we actually got seats together, so technically queue jumped. No sign of Air opening so we went to Duel, not queue. Next on to my favourite, missing RMT as the queue was horrendous.
We got to Oblivion and yes the queue was big so single rider again, we got vertually straight on.
We were hungry by now so went to KFC.
Seeing Oblivion going round we thought we would give it another go, so we did twice, and one of the times we got on together and it broke, we were stuck in the brake run out in the rain, but it was nice to sit down, and we chatted with others, we decided to go once again as well.
Leigh wanted to do Hex so he went on ahead, I stood near entrance and the Hail came down, I stood under a tree and waited for about 25 mins for Leigh to come out.
With this we noticed Air was open on the boards again and we went, using the pass, we waited ages for them to process us amongst the diabled, I insisted we went front as it was where we were before it broke, and guess what, it broke again. As we had used the pass we waited and they did a rolling shut down to get trains in right place, we eventually got on, and as we went up the lift it stopped, we thought here we go again but realised we had been stacked, thank god.

Next we did Nemesis again , as it had been raining it was running very fast, you felt ever bit of the G-force it gave you, brilliant ride. Leigh had a moment as the train stopped on the lift and he thought here we go again, but it re started again quickly.

To finish the day we were going to do Nemesis again but the single queue had grown, we headed for RMT but that was busy so went to Oblivion, as we wanted to be out of the Park by 5pm to go on to Darley Dale later to go on a Steam Train for evening meal which had been booked.
Oblivion had a 15 min queue and we got out at 5.10.
Now this is where my day turn from bad to worse, on rushing back up to get the journey out, in the position of Brookes first photo, I completely face planted myself just under one of those trees. I got plastered with foliage sticking out of my hair and face covered in dirt. I didn't land very well at all, I have now a very swollen knee and aching all over.
Leigh however couldn't help me as he couldn't stop laughin, as he and many others around did, I had to join in with a mixture of tears and laughs but hiding the fact I was in agony.
To top this the queue for the mono rail was so long we decided to leg it to the car park, adding to my pain. What a day!! the evening was good though, still in agony we had a meal on a rolling steam train back with Phill who had been at a meeting in Darley Dale all day.

Ride Count
Nemesis 3
Oblivion 4
Air 1
Duel 1
Leigh did Hex
Th13teen 1
Rita 1

Not too good but we were going to Drayton next day so didn't mind too much.


Giga Poster
^^The mugs are really cool I think; they have handles that like represent twisted track.

^Yeah Thirteen must have been on 2 trains when we rode it in the afternoon because the amount of people in the queue could never have turned into such a lengthy wait without it being run slower.