Posted by sean on August 29, 2007 at 3:47 pm in Ventures Outside Of Bath with No Comments

I am now back in Bath, following my short break. Most of the events at the campsite have already been mentioned, so I’ll just write a little bit about Alton Towers, photos can be found on the blog below.

A summary of the attractions I had time to ride:

The Monorail:
Not strictly a ride. The Monorail took us from the monstrous sized car park to the park. Even though it was able to hold a lot of people, there was still a massive queue – although this can be put down to the fact of 10,000,000 people trying to enter the same place at the same time.

The one I had been warned about. I was told to empty my bowels prior to going on this one, or risk filling my pants with cream. I dismissed this as I only get scared of real threats, and my brain told me that this ride would be safe, however frighting it may appear. I enjoyed the ride and the feeling of falling at such speed is impressive. To think this is what people who jump off cliffs and buildings must feel moments before they splatter on the floor – it’s enough to put anyone off suicide.

Another fast and scary one. This ride required you to be strapped in very tight. Having watched the roller-coaster bomb around the track while I was in the queue, I wasn’t going to object to the extra security. While the ride was amazing, it was very fast and all over too quickly.

I didn’t like this one. It was basically a crap ghost train where you were encouraged to shoot the green dots on the wall and monsters with a laser pistol, similar to what you might use on the Sega Mastersystem.

Definitely one for the grannies. Most of this attraction was spent watching a pre-ride presentation, supposedly a “true” horror story about a man getting cursed, branches falling off a tree and his family members dying. It reminded me of being on a boring school trip. The ride was a trick of the mind, rather than a thrill experience. You would sit on a church-like bench, which would rock slowly from side to side, while the ceiling would rotate, thus giving the impression that you were tipping upside down. My intelligence was not fooled. Rubbish.

Runaway Mine Train:
This may not be one of the biggies, but I enjoyed it. A fast, fun, old-skool style roller-coaster. One horizontal track which the train would twist and turn along at high speed. Good fun!

Congo River Rapids:
Watkins and I rode this one twice as it was so fun (and the queues were relatively short). You would sit on what was effectively a massive tyre, while taking a leisurely trip down fast moving rapids, water falls and rocks. Good fun if you don’t mind getting bashed about and a bit damp.

The Flume:
Another one we went on twice. This one too involved water and getting very, very wet! A raft takes you around a water propelled track, up and down flumes and past bastard ducks who spray water all over your already soaked clothes. Some poor sod in-front of us got absolutely drenched – it looked like he had fallen in!

My favourite ride. Like Nemesis, we were all strapped in very securely, before being turned 90 degrees so we were facing the floor. The roller-coaster then took us up a hill, before racing around the track, flipping us from side-to-side, upside down, high into the sky and within literally inches of the ground. Excellent stuff! Had it not been for the massive queues, I would have rode this one all day.

Gondolas which take you to and from various areas in the park. Pretty cool as it suspends you very high above the ground. You also get some fabulous views across the park, ground and surrounding countryside.

The Toilet:
Due to consuming a lot of Coca Cola (they were giving unlimited re-fills!), I had to use this attraction a lot. This ride featured some amazing mini-water flumes, mad hand dryers, insane taps (both hot & cold) and some crazy soap dispensers!

Some other observations from the day:
Scousers and brummies sound the same – whinging and extremely annoying. Alton Towers was full of them – all wearing Liverpool. Aston Villa and Newcastle United football shirts. To be honest, I think they were probably down on the rob, and not to enjoy the rides. While in the queue for Congo River Rapids, a bunch of them pushed their way in-front of us. I was tempted to say something, but I have seen enough episodes of Wife Swap to know that arguing with arrogant shits is just pointless. To make matters worse, every-time a boat went past, the herd of chavs would shout out “Excuse me! You have a puncture!”. This went on for about 20 minutes, and with boats going past every 10 seconds, you can imagine it got more than a little annoying. I was hoping and praying that their boat would sink – give them something to shout about.

The government and health officials keep going on about how children are all fat, and by the time they are 30, will be either dead, diabetic or 50 stone. Living in the south of England, we don’t get that many fatties, so thought the warnings were another case of media propaganda. Since going up north, I believe there is a fat children epidemic. Every other child was a pig; and I don’t mean a little bit chubby, I’m talking Eddie Murphy in Nutty Professor fat! It looked as if they were carrying one of the tyres from the River Rapids ride around their waist!

And finally – like at motorway service stations, all food and drink is vastly overpriced. It’s not enough you pay £30 to get in, but you get stung again whenever you want to eat or drink.

Despite the odd minor moan I may have had, I did enjoy myself, and definitely want to go back; if only to go on everything I didn’t have time to yesterday, and to ride Air again!

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