Harborland is a medium sized park that feels like it is running on borrowed time. Quite a few of the attractions were closed today, and others had very limited operation times. The Flight of the Phoenix (#1457) opened at 10:30, though it closed again thirty minutes later. Fortunately this was enough time for almost all of the group to get the credit, with the handful that missed it losing out due to a very unforgiving restraint design. The only other worthwhile ride in the park was Castle Hastle, a spinning target shooting dark ride, though the scoring didn't work at all. There was almost no scenery to speak of within, just the occasional glowing rock formation. Additionally the ride exit had been blocked off, forcing guests to leave by walking down the side of a flower bed.
9th September 2009
Our second park of the day marked a sharp contrast to Harborland. While once again a number of rides were down, the majority were open including one real oddity; a launched tower ride that at first glance appeared to be a S&S Space Shot. It was only on close inspection that one could see a different embossed logo on the seats. The crumbling over the shoulder harnesses were backed up by two seat belts, one of which clipped on in the usual fashion; the other was wrapped around each riders waist and pulled tight enough to prevent any contact with the primary restraint. The ride experience was broadly equivalent to the original towers, albeit with a slightly worrying mechanical clanking throughout.
The Double Loop Coaster (#1458) featured trains that simply did not have enough room for those over six foot to be comfortable. The back row of each car was marginally better than the front, but in both cases it was necessary to sit at a slight angle in order to cram into the car. Other than the space issue though, the ride was fairly decent, and indeed there was just enough time for me to catch a second lap right before we left the park.
Another oddity in the park is a gigantic double pirate ship, of the sort seen at Nagashima Spa Land, which if operated at capacity could handle several thousand guests per hour. It was hard to envisage the park we saw ever getting that busy, but against that we were visiting on a week day in school term. The best view of this ride, and indeed of the park as a whole, is found on the cable car leading to what I'm going to call a lookout point high up on the mountain. The view from the top was spectacular if slightly drab; some variety in the local building construction would have made things so much more interesting!
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