Six Flags Discovery Kingdom Update - May 28th, 2022
Sidewinder Safari Opening Day!
After almost 3 years, we finally have our new coaster at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, Sidewinder Safari! I was at the park today to cover the public opening day of this new ride. And what a great ride it was, just what the park needed! But it wasn't the only news from the park, we also have some ride news, including the removal of another of SFDK's thrill rides, and some other miscellaneous updates. Let's get right into it!(As always, if you prefer your update in a video form, we got you!)
This ride is exactly what SFDK needed! So to clarify, this is not a particularly intense coaster. It's a classic spinning wild mouse, some good lateral forces, some fun airtime on the drops and finally some fun spinning depending on the weight distribution of the car. Despite it not being an intense coaster, it fits a hole in SFDK's lineup really well. SFDK has a kid's coaster or two and then they have a ton of large, intense coaster with nothing in intensity between Cobra and Boomerang. Sidewinder Safari sits in that slot in the lineup and is a great working up coaster for thrill seekers that aren't quite ready yet for Boomerang. I enjoyed the ride a ton and will probably make it a staple of my visits to the park! Let's start with some queue and station details before we get into more details about the ride itself:
The queue features three separate lines: a standby line, Flash Pass and Single Riders. Single riders didn't seem to be used on opening day so YMMV with that
When you get to right outside the station, you're given these instructions
And then you step on the moving platform and get into your car to experience the ride!
Although the line was long in the afternoon, the crew did a good job of sending trains
And now let's check out some pictures of the ride, presented without comment. Note how great the cars and the green and yellow track look!
The themeing on this ride was the biggest surprise for me. I expected a tossed down spinning mouse with maybe a snake statue or two but we ended up getting the best themed ride in the park. The queue houses a handful of snake exhibits and even has some small touches that make it stand out that I'll cover below. Keep reading and I'll have plenty of pictures of the great new ride's themeing!
To talk about the themeing, you have to start with this amazing sign. Best in the park by far and probably the best entrance sign in the state
The ride's queue sits inside of this large building
Well it's not inside inside of the building but there is a roof and tarp overhead
That building exists to provide keepers access to the snake exhibits inside, like this little guy!
Although in fairness most of them are empty so far
Even the empty cages have signs on the species inside so I have to assume that they'll be full before too long
A little closer look at one of the signs
The only window to not have a snake exhibit has a couple skulls and some other snake memorabilia
The coolest piece of themeing by far is this element in the queue. Stick your hand in and it puffs air at you. I saw people getting scared all day by this. Great touch at the ride!
Also inside and outside of the queue are a handful of electronic boards that display snake facts...
And snake related trivia
The queue features some minor themeing elements
And more sits out front
Some close up shots
I have to assume that these refer to park employees or execs
Kinda cool to see these little touches
Another look at the themeing out front of the ride
A cool small touch is that the signs to employee areas have this sign out front instead of a more generic sign
With the opening of Sidewinder Safari, let's check out the area around the new to see some improvements SFDK has made to the surrounding area.
As expected, the path between SS and the lions and tigers has been opened again
Tava's Jungleland Trading Post got a nice new sign!
And the splash pad was on for the first time in a long time
Although Zoe's Treehouse remains closed
Odin's Snack Shack has become Sidewinder Snacks
The menu looks similar but adds turkey legs. Either way, it looks so much better and more fitting to the area
Safari Grill was open again, also the first time in a long time
With the increased attention at the back of the park, I expect Tigris Emporium to be open a lot more like it was this visit and the last one
In the biggest bit of news from the month, the Hammerhead flat ride was completely gone
The queue line was also completely removed
And a funstruction sign was placed out front
Although the sign remained. It's possible that this ride is undergoing a DEEP refurbishment but I doubt it, it seems like it's being removed
This continues the troubling trend of flat ride removals around the park. I'm hoping that we see future investment replacing these rides
White Water Safari was down for the day with its winter refurb sign up. Not sure if it was a day thing since it was a cool day or if this is a larger issue
The trough was totally drained
And workers were working on the main lift
I hope to see the ride running again soon as the weather starts to heat up!
The Voodoo ride sit still sits more or less unchanged
There's lots of room here for a nice flat!
The Tazmanian Devil ramp still remains
Although the site looks relatively unchanged
Also plenty of room here for a ride, more if the old motion theater building is removed
Wonder Woman is currently closed waiting for parts to arrive. It should reopen in July
The Six Below stand at the front of the park has become Funnelcake Express to go along with the larger Funnelcake Corner shop it's attached to
As you'd expect, the shop sells a smaller menu of funnel cakes
There were some tree removals near Seal Cove. Wonder why they were removed
The cougar exhibit was still empty with a funstruction sign out front
Medusa had this electronic wait time board out front. None of the other rides I saw did, so I wonder if they're just testing the concept to come to more rides later?
At the park's entrance plaza, some of the planters were removed and replaced with some info signs, currently displaying info for AAPI Heritage month
Seaside Sandwiches was serving some interesting dishes
Memorial Day Weekend at the park saw the addition of this massive flag to the plaza stage
Let's end the update with this goofy looking giraffe! I could watch these animals all day, they just always look so silly!
And that'll wrap up our update for the day! It was an awesome day at the park and I'm really impressed with SFDK and Sidewinder Safari. The ride is a great fit in the park's lineup and it's done really well. I'm hoping that future additions continue to keep the same themeing. But there's plenty at the park to keep our eye on as well, especially Hammerhead's removal. But expect another update from me from SFDK in early July!