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 Review of Legend @ Holiday World
2 Rating Posted by: PhantomNik on 1/31/2008 6:03:00 PM
For me, it’s always a blessing to go to a park and discover a great wooden coaster. There’s really nothing quite like a great wooden ride, with that cool raw energy that it possesses. Sadly though, I’ve been to some parks that really don’t have a "great" wooden coaster. Therefore, I feel pretty lucky if I can find a park with 1 that’s worth raving about, such as the gem known as El Toro at a steel-dominated Six Flags Great Adventure. Then there are the rare parks like Knoebels, that have not one but TWO stellar wooden coasters. That’s like icing on an already delicious cake! And I’ve always felt even luckier to be near my home park of Kennywood, with (to me anyway) 3 amazing woodies in one park. I really never thought it could get much better than that – until I went to Holiday World. Holiday World is the proud home to a wooden trifecta so incredible that it is simply mind-boggling! It’s insane to say that a ride like Legend is actually my "third favorite" wooden coaster there, but that is indeed the case. Usually that might elicit responses like "Oh, so Legend isn’t really that good, huh?" Funny thing is, if Legend was the lone woodie at a different park, it would be a superstar. But, it’s here in the plains of Indiana, greatly underappreciated and log-jammed behind such world-class coasters like Voyage and Raven. Well, I’m here to say that Legend in its own right is one excellent roller coaster! In my mind, it perfectly rounds out that awesome trio, and has a unique ride that is a blast and worthy of probably more praise than it already might get.

As you enter the parking lot to Holiday World, you can see the first glimpses of Legend as it pokes above some trees on the side of Lake Rudolph. As I made an initial walk through the park upon entering, Legend definitely grabbed my attention. All I could really see was the lift and impressive first drop, as the coaster then disappeared behind slides from Splashin’ Safari and headed towards the woods. In fact, I love that about the coasters at Holiday World. You see just enough of them to wet the adrenaline appetite, but most of them are tucked behind a mask of dense forestry. What little I saw looked beautiful, from the simple but neat looking station house to the clean and stately lift. I decided that I would ride Legend first, so after snapping a few pics I entered the queue. The ride crew here, as was the case all through Holiday World, was marvelously fast and efficient, producing waits that were very minimal. Once we were checked, it was time to head off on another wonderful journey aboard a wooden star at this park.

Legend is located in the Halloween section of the park, and it is setup to mimic a wild frolic through the wilderness while being chased down by the diabolical headless horseman. The ride itself on Legend is so good that if one were to close their eyes, they’d swear that the headless one himself were hot on their trail. I love the subtle touches on Legend that add to the overall experience, such as the bell ringing as each train leaves the station, and the amazingly cool howl of the wolves as the train curves around after the lift hill heading towards the first drop. At night, that makes the ride that much more haunting and spooky. Speaking of the first drop, Legend’s is excellent. The drop is large and forceful, with some wonderful airtime. In the back, the airtime on the first drop is mammoth! By the bottom of the first drop, the coaster has picked up a ton of speed as it now cuts loose on all cylinders as it turns up towards the woods and some slides, which act several times as some great close calls. Legend holds a unique distinction with me in that I really don’t remember in vivid detail the layout, even after 7 rides on it. Part of that was due to the fact that 6 of my rides came under the cover of pitch-black, moonlit darkness, which added a great thrill to the fantastic ride. Whereas Raven is focused on airtime, Legend takes a different approa

Review Comments

detroit_jc on 1/31/2008 6:58:42 PM said:
PhantomNik I enjoy your reviews! i like how you describe the park experience as well as the ride experience in depth. Keep em comin.
shag9004 on 2/3/2008 12:22:37 PM said:
I thik you hit Legend right on the head. After my first visit to the park (and 2 rides on each woodies) I actually preferred it to Raven due to its length and laterals. After two more subsequent visits, I have found that I like the coaster even more than originally, only I like Raven better!!

Holiday World is a superb park and these three world class woodies make it a place to visit every year.

PhantomNik on 2/11/2008 6:02:28 PM said:
I really do wish that Holiday World wasnt as far away from me as it is. I agree that its a superb park that I will definitely visit again, but at 500+ miles away, I dont think yearly visits are in the cards for me....at least, not yet!
shag9004 on 2/11/2008 9:48:06 PM said:
Yeah, its only about 4-5 hours from GA so with a buddy we can make it a day trip. Defintely yearly park for me!!!!
yfz450 on 2/11/2008 10:14:55 PM said:
Another great review, makes me want to head down there and experience some good wooden roller coasters!
shag9004 on 2/19/2008 5:59:36 PM said:
As far as wood is concerned, I dont think youll find a better location to visit.
ginzo on 2/19/2008 10:44:49 PM said:
^I think that depends on how good Flying Turns winds up being. Phoenix + another top 10 woodie would be pretty hard to beat.
PhantomNik on 2/21/2008 1:06:31 PM said:
^Flying Turns definitely looks like it will be a blast, but do you really think it will be top 10 material? Maybe, but I think its gonna be one of those coasters thats just plain fun.

As for Knoebels versus HW as a wood coaster destination, both are fine choices. But for me, the choice is HW by a mile. I do like Phoenix a bit better than Raven, but I think Legend destroys Twister. Plus, that leaves the ultimate trump card - Voyage. Having had one visit each to those parks, I am more inclined to want to head back to Indiana first.

shag9004 on 2/21/2008 6:30:17 PM said:
I will be visiting Knoebels the third of week of June. I fully expect Phoenix and Twister both to enter my top 20 as I ahve really missed out on some good woodies.

In our circular loop we should get Renegade at Valleyfair, Shivering Timbers at Michigans Adventure, and Phoenix/Twister at Knobels. That still leaves Boulder Dash as well as the ones in Wisconsin Dells but oh well, its tough to go everywhere.

ginzo on 2/21/2008 10:30:33 PM said:
^^I dunno how Flying Turns is going to end up. I like bobsled runs. According to Knoebels, steel bobsled coasters arent nearly as good as the old Flying Turns were. They also get brownie points for resurrecting a dead ride.
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