Monday 15 August 2011

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Six Flags Hurricane Harbor

We have a problem sometimes when we are doing theme parks.  My two oldest kids love rides, the bigger and scarier the better.  My youngest doesn't like rides at all.  She'll tolerate some of the dark rides like Little Mermaid, but in general I think she'd rather be back at the hotel than in an amusement park.  We thought we'd try something new to try and improve her day, so while I took the older two to Magic Mountain, my wife took our littlest to Hurricane Harbor.

We used to have waterslides in Kelowna, but as with everything else up here that has a lake view, there was more money to be made by developing the land.  Now we only have a couple of little slides that belong to our local swimming pool, but they are nothing like the ones at Hurricane Harbor.

I always wonder about the safety of some of these giant slides.  I love roller coasters, but I can see where I'm going to be attached to the track and buckled into the car.  The fact that slides are open and there's nothing to keep you stuck on the slide other than the static created by your bathing suit seems a tad worrisome to me.  Oh well, I drew Magic Mountain, so good luck Lori!

Fortunately Hurricane Harbor isn't all about the giant slides.  There's plenty of smaller slides for the more timid, a huge wave pool which gets pretty crowded, and there's a great lazy river for those who just want to be taken away from it all, but don't have any Calgon handy.  When my youngest daughter says that she had a great time, you've either got something for everybody in your park, or you've targeted the narrowest, most specific demographic ever.  Either way works for us.

So lets talk money.  Is the park affordable?  It sure is if you've got a seasons pass to Magic Mountain, or more accurately the coupon book that comes with your seasons pass.  Each coupon book has a "get in free" coupon for Hurricane Harbor.  Normal admittance is around $20, so since I was already $100 ahead of the game it would seem rather snide of me to complain about extra costs, but in the interest of giving you all the details, I will anyways.  It's $18 to rent a locker for the day (assuming your brought something larger than a comb) and food is your standard theme park pricing ($10 for a hot dog combo that you can't un-combo.)  You also have to rent your own tube in the park, which will cost you $7 for a single tube or $14 for a double.  You then get to spend the rest of the day carrying your tube around with you so that all the hopped-up, elementary school hooligans don't steal it.  At least it provides you with a seat no matter where you are.

Now for the scary part.  No it wasn't the slides or the prices (well maybe a little bit of the prices.)  You see the picture up above?  Notice the two feet off to the left.  Those belong to my oldest daughter.  About five seconds after this picture was taken, my son started yelling at her to "Move! Move! Move!"  It must have been his tone, because for the first time in her life a command from her brother didn't elicit the response of "Why should I?" and she scrambled to her feet and away.  So what prompted this urgent demand to action?

I know very little about Black Widow spiders, but I do know that, like teenage boys, I want them nowhere near my daughter.  Actually now that I'm looking at this picture, I'm a little disappointed.  I remember the spider being SOOO much bigger.  Perhaps you could just click on the picture and expand it to fill your entire monitor.  Now you're reliving the moment with me! 

Hurricane Harbor fills a perfect niche for us.  The bigger kids can ride roller coasters all day, and littlest can play in the water park.  The fact that the two parks share an entrance gate makes it really easy to go back and forth, thus allowing you to empty your wallet in both parks.  Six Flags convenience at it's best, and so far there's no extra charge for the spiders!