2017 Season In Review

It's the 29th December and I've just walked through the door from my very final trip of 2017 (a little winter getaway to Efteling and Phantasialand to check out their winter events in case you were wondering). Now that all my park visits for the year are finally behind me I thought I'd grab a cup of tea, and cast a fond look back at the weird and wonderful season that has been 2017!

Considering Conor and I would be getting married this year and combining this with the fact that there wasn't a whole bunch of interesting stuff going on in more local parks (and by that I mean: UK & Europe), we figured this year would be a quieter one. And usually when I think that it ends up being absolutely bloody manic, and I wasn't wrong.

Although I only gained 34 new creds this year (my lowest increase since 2010), I spent over 50 days in parks this year including a bunch of new-for-me parks. But ultimately 2017 for me was about revisiting some old favourites and taking the time to appreciate the parks I love rather than smashing out a bunch of new creds!

Every year, CoasterForce do a great thread looking back at the season, so I'm using those questions as a basis plus the ones you guys have asked me. Here we go:

As stated above, 34. Not my best by any stretch of the imagination, but 2017 was never going to be a huge year cred-wise and 2018 will more than likely make up for it!

A fair few actually!
Animal Park Adventure Farm
Wiener Prater
Bohmischer Prater
Funder Park
Parc du Bocasse
Zip World
Ferrari Land

Not bad considering I wasn't really making an effort with new stuff this year!

I'm going to do a separate post detailing all of my favourite new-for-me things I rode this year, but top of that list but honestly I don't feel like I've ridden anything mind-blowing this year, coaster-wise. I guess if I really had to pick it'd be Schwur des Karnan - it's by far one of the most interesting new coasters in recent years, it absolutely terrified me the first time I rode it and it's got everything from ejector airtime, to hang-time to speed to inversions to so much more. It really is the whole package!

Ignoring the obvious crap like the Wacky Worms and Volares etc, I think I'll go with P├ęgase Express. It just...doesn't really do anything? It just kind of meanders around, doesn't really provide any forces of interest and generally is a bit meh, in my opinion.

Honestly, Gerstlauer. The work they've done on Karnan is obscene and shows that they really do have what it takes to contend against the big boys. I really wish we'd see some more of these crazy custom projects they clearly excel at. Plus, I haven't ridden it just yet but Gold Rush at Slagharen looks equally as mental. I'm excited to see what bigger and better things come from this manufacturer that many an enthusiast dismiss as trash.

This may come as a shock to some, but I'm actually going to say Heide Park. Yes, I've historically not been too much of a fan of this place and yes, its best cred is currently SBNO, but honestly we had such a wonderful time during our visit this year! Loving Ghostbusters so much we ran straight back around for another go, How To Train Your Dragon meet and greets, general CF Live silliness and, top top it all off, a night at the fabulous resort hotel with unlimited beer on tap. Yes please.

I'm ever the optimist, so it's usually hard for me to choose a rubbish day. But 2017 is easy - my recent visit to Port Aventura saw me get really sick on our first day, so much so that I didn't ride Dragon Khan at all during my entire visit and I only got a handful of rides on Shambhala as it was all my poor stomach could handle. Damn the Mexican Cantina!

This one is easy, it's the Smokehouse at Chessington. Conor and I absolutely love BBQ food and Chessington have absolutely nailed it! The brisket, the pulled pork, the ribs! Omg, everything is so good, my mouth is watering just writing this. We actually loved it so much that we would often pop into Chessie just to eat there. Absolutely amazing, and with discount it works out about a tenner per person, which is incredible value considering the portion sizes and quality.

I've actually had a bunch of excellent trips this year. Focussing on quality over quantity has obviously meant that we visited a lot of really fantastic parks without the usual peppering of total garbage to up the cred count. It's a toss us between Ghosterforce (Movie Park Germany/Heide Park/Hansa Park) or mine and Conor's recent trip to Efteling and Phantasialand. Both equally fabulous in their own ways!

I won't go into detail but it involves the journey from Cologne Airport prior to our visit to Movie Park Germany, a moped and a mistimed U-turn. Ahem.

I think the group terror we experienced as we awaited our fate on Schwur des Karnan. It's not often you get a group of coaster enthusiasts scared of something, but it's absolutely hilarious when you're terrified yourself and then look around the find the group in an equal state of hysteria.

Turns out, 2017 was pretty stacked! Considering we planned for this year to be a quiet one it's actually mad how much we ended up doing! It's been a lot of fun and a year full of riding truly excellent rides. No changes to my top ten, but the chance to get better acquainted with some old favourites and fully experience parks we'd only skimmed the surface of during previous visits.

What did you get up to during 2017? Leave me a comment on Facebook or Twitter, I'd love to hear how your season went! Now, roll on 2018!

Talk later xoxo,