Amusement parks, theme parks, ride photography

Dark Rides

Journey to Atlantis, Sea World Orlando.

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I have been requested by a few visitors to include some pictures from my trip to Florida last year and if im honest Ive been a bit lazy posting some of these, one request is for Journey to Atlantis at Sea World.  I didn’t get to ride this due to an ear infection picked up earlier in the week on some water other water rides. For anyone planning on visiting Seaworld in the near future from the reports Ive had its not a ride to be missed.

Originally installed in 1998 by Mack rides Journey of Atlantis is clased as a water coaster or as some enthusiasts title liquid coaster.

Its a small world – Disneyland Paris


I visited Disneyland Paris in July 2008, we spent a total of 4 days on the 2 parks and 3 nights in the Santa fe hotel.

One of the many highlights for me of a trip to somewhere like Disney is the dark rides.

With attractions like It’s a small world and Pirates topping the list. This first set of photographs covers most of the small world ride, however some photographs and sets are missing due to the fact the ride is very dark in places and ISO 1600 on my camera is the best I have for low light.

Its a short ride and to me one of the great disney classics.

The last tour – Southport Pleasureland Ghost Train

I was very fortunate to attend a behind the scenes tour of Southport Pleasureland the weekend before the park closed its gates for the final time.

I was in a group of about 50 members of Club Pleasure Beach and we got to ride Traumatizer (now relocated to Blackpool as Infusion) and the Cyclone wooden roller coaster (which was later demolished).

Also included in the tour was a Q&A session with one of the parks directors and a look into the workshops located behind the cyclone and finally a tour of the ghost train with the lights on.

These are the pictures taken at this event.

Inside Alton Towers Black Hole Tent

Ive had this set of photographs lying around for some, Ive had a couple of offers from various people to publish them but I suppose ive been a bit selfish really and kept them to myself.

A bit of History about the ride. The Black hole is a Schwarzkopf Jet star 2 coaster with a length of 1919ft, Height of 44’3 and a duration of 1min 50 seconds. It was originally brought to Alton Towers as the Black hole in 1983 before going through a couple of name changes, New Black Hole, Black Hole 2 and finally back to Black hole again. The ride was closed in 2006.

So finally heres a set of photographs taken in July 2007 from inside the Black Hole Tent at Alton Towers.

Behind the scenes – Hex at Alton Towers

Hex was included as part of a behind the scenes tour of Alton Towers I did with Club Pleasure Beach earlier this year. The tours included attractions like Rita, Duel and Air, ive just never got round to publishing this set of photographs.

This article isnt going to be a ride spoiler as such, more an in depth looking behind the scenes of one of the parks most spectacular dark rides.

Hex is a Vekoma Haunted Swing ride, it has operated at the park since 2000. Its located in the towers and well you cant really miss a big great tower.

Behind the Scenes – Space Invader 2, Pleasure Beach Blackpool

I was fortunate enough to attend a club pleasure beach event in May which included a behind the scenes tour of a number of attractions including Infusion and Space Invader 2.

Space Invader 2 was originally called space invader when it arrived at the park in 1984, after been refurbished by Kumbak coasters in 2004 it reopened as Space Invader 2.

Anyone that remembers the original Space invader will remember the very uncomfortable and often bumpy ride.

Duel At Alton Towers, Behind the Scenes and History

The arguement rages on over Duel vs the Haunted house and I don’t think we will ever get a group of enthusiasts to agree which was/is better. For me personally it has to be the Haunted House and one of the reasons I wrote this article

Ive split this article in two, initially ill take a look at a behind the scenes tour done during July 2007 this will be followed up with some history and photographs of the haunted house written by the Mik the editor of the Haunted one.

A Dark time for Dark Rides.

We seem to see more and more classic rides disappearing these days. Over in the US enthusiasts are having a pretty tough time coming to terms with loosing some classic rides over the last year, and the plans for the future don’t look to good either.Any Dark Ride fans will have come across George LaCross and Bill Luca’s excellent website Laffinthedark, It has a wealth of information for all enthusiasts interested in this genre of ride.

Early dark ride history in a nutshell

Information and photographs compiled by Bill Luca and George LaCross of http://www.laffinthedark.com

1928: The single-rail dark ride is invented