Venue: Funland, Hayling Island
Who Went: Just me
N.B. Any use of "today" or "Saturday" in this report means Saturday 27 October 2012.
Saturday First ThingDay 2 of my three-day visit to Portsmouth. I awoke just after 7:00. My plan for the day was to visit Funland, Hayling Island. For that reason I put on my RCCGB 20th anniversary T-shirt, though judging by the bitter cold weather, it was likely that would be covered by a few layers of outer clothing all day. The guest house where I stayed provided room only accommodation. Thankfully Moggy's Café was just a short walk down the road. I got there around 8:30am and had an All Day Breakfast consisting of 2 bacon rashers, 1 sausage, 1 fried egg on fried bread, 3 tinned tomatoes. A slice of bread and butter and a mug of coffee were also included.
Off To FunlandHaving left Moggy's Café just after 9am I caught a number 23 bus from a nearby stop to Havant Bus Station. The bus took about an hour to get from Southsea to Havant, which seemed a long time considering how close together they are. When I finally reached Havant Bus Station, I caught the 10:35 number 31 bus to Hayling Island. Due to its clockwise route around Hayling Island this wasn't the best bus to catch for Funland. I found it was quicker to get off at Mengham Corner and walk the rest of the way to Funland than to stay on all the way to Funland.
Funland, Hayling Island
Morning CoffeeWhen I finally reached Funland at 11:03, I felt like a coffee before going into Funland. I went into Beachlands Café, which is conveniently located next-door to Funland, to enjoy a mug of coffee. However I didn't have anything to eat.
Morning RidingI first entered Funland at 11:28am and bought a daytime wrist band which was valid until 5pm. Once fitted with my wristband I immediately took to the rides. As a RCCGB member I wanted to start the day on one of Funland's three coasters, preferably Klondike. Unfortunately when I approached Klondike I was the only person waiting for it, and the attendant said it needed at least four riders to run. Rather than wait for more riders to approach it, I left its queue line and began my day on Woody's Roller Coaster instead.
Woody's Roller CoasterThankfully I was able to ride this alone. This Cavazza Diego Super Nessi Junior Coaster has been operating since 2001. Despite the name, it's actually a steel coaster. However the ride cars resemble logs, which probably explains why the coaster is called Woody's Roller Coaster. One ride consists of three laps. I had one go in the front row, followed by one go in the back row.
KlondikeBeing as a few other riders were about to go on this, I took the opportunity to ride this next. This Pinfari Zyklon ZL42 coaster previously operated at Drayton Manor Park as Python Looping Coaster from 1984 to 1994, and as Klondike Gold Mine from 1995 to 2004. Since 2005, it has been operating at Funland, Hayling Island. The train set off up the lift hill, around the vertical loop and through the tunnels until it terminated at the exit platform. A thrilling and fun ride experience considering the coaster's age. For now I only had one go.
Super DragonThis Pinfari Super Dragon MD31 previously operated at Drayton Manor Park as Super Dragon from 1984 to 2007, but has been operating at Funland since 2008. I had one go in the back row followed one go in the front row. One ride consisted of multiple laps, however I didn't count how many laps each go actually consisted of.
Blizzard Falls Log FlumeFunland's mini log flume. I think this one is primarily aimed at children, but adults can ride it. The log sets off from the platform, around a u-bend, up the lift hill and down again. After the landing splash (which isn't very big) the log continues around another u-bend and back into the station. The rise and fall are quite small, and the overall ride duration is quite short, but it is still a fun ride. This ride was walk-on, and I enjoyed four goes on this.
Break DancerThis is made by made by I.E.Park, and works in a similar manner to a waltzer. You get into cars, which spin on turntables, which themselves spin on a spinning giant turntable. I sat in car 9. A fun ride, but one go was enough for now.
Silcock's Speed FlipThis thrill ride by Moser Rides first appeared at Funland in 2011. It consists of four arms, with four looping gondolas on the end of each arm. The arms rise up so the four gondolas rotate about the applicable arm end, whilst almost inverted. In addition the central pole spins about its base. An unusual ride sensation to say the least, you need to ride it to find out what it feels like. I rode in car 14. Although a fun ride, one go was enough for me for now. In fact this was my only go on here all day.
Having left Speed Flip, I felt like a short break from riding, so I walked around Funland for a few minutes before going on anything else.
DropA drop tower, which claims to be the tallest, fastest ride on the south coast. This drop tower stands 35 metres tall. The bit at the top with the Drop logo on comes down, locks on to the top of the seating unit and pulls the seating unit up the tower, until the seats are roughly level with the fifth floor of the tower. After a short delay the seat unit is released for a free fall drop, until about half way down magnets bring it to a halt and lower it gently to the ground. Not a ride for those with a fear of heights! For now I had one go in seat 1 followed by one go in seat 4
Flying SaucerAt first sight this looked somewhat familiar to me. I later found out this is new to Funland for 2012 and, just as I thought, it was acquired second-hand from Paultons. It has an outer ring (where the seats are), linked by four spokes to its centrepiece. Initially it's level, but soon after it has started it rises to an angle so you go up and down as well as spin. Eventually it returns to the level position for its final few spins before slowing down and stopping. Although not a particularly exciting ride, it was great to ride it again for the first time since my last visit to Paultons in September 2010. My one go on this now ended up being my only go all day.
KlondikeA few other people were about to ride this looping coaster, so I took the opportunity to ride it. This time I sat in the front row. For now I only had one go.
Woody's Roller CoasterBack to this family coaster for my final two rides before lunch: back row followed by front row.
Lunchtime and AfterAt 1pm I went to Beachlands Café for a ham sandwich and mug of coffee. After lunch I walked along the sea front as far as the miniature railway station Mengham Road. Close to that station I went on a few items of outdoor exercise equipment before walking back to Funland.
Afternoon RidingAt 2:33pm I arrived back at Funland. I wanted to start with the Super Dragon coaster, as there was no queue for it, but when I approached the entrance I was unable to attract the attendant's attention. Rather than hang about, I went across to Blizzard Falls Log Flume instead.
Blizzard Falls Log FlumeThus my afternoon riding began with two goes on this mini log flume. Both goes were just as much fun as my previous goes during the morning.
Super DragonThe attendant was now taking riders, so I had one go in the front row. When the ride finished I had one go in the back row. This ride was very quiet on both of my goes.
Blizzard Falls Log FlumeTwo more goes on this mini log flume. These were my final goes on here for today.
KlondikeBeing as some other riders were about to ride this looping coaster, I took the opportunity to have a go. Since those riders kept going back on, I ended up having four goes as follows:
First go: second row.
Second go: back row. This time I wanted to ride wearing just my RCCGB T-shirt, but it was too cold for that.
Third go: back row (left seat)
Fourth go: second row (left seat)
After this go, I returned to the entry gate for a fifth go, but the other riders had disappeared. Since I couldn't ride Klondike alone I had to wait a few minutes for more riders to turn up. I didn't have to wait long and continued as follows:
Fifth go: second row (right seat)
Sixth go: front row (left seat)
Woody's Roller CoasterAfter a few minutes break from riding, I enjoyed two more goes on Woody's Roller Coaster: second row from the back followed by front row. The ride was walk-on for both goes.
Helter SkelterIt's questionable whether this should be classed as a true ride or a slide. Having been down the Astra slide, drop slides and Black Hole tube slide at Portsmouth Playzone the previous evening, I was determined to ride Funland's Helter Skelter today. I enjoyed a total of eight goes on it. Again there were at worst two other sliders in front of me, and on some of my goes there was no-one in front of me at the top of the steps.
Break DancerMy second and final go for today on this spinning ride. This time I sat in car 3. Just like this morning, Break Dancer was a fun ride, but once was enough.
DropMy final two goes on this drop tower. I happened to be the only rider on this and was thus able to choose my seats, therefore I had one go in seat 2 followed by one go in seat 3.
Cannibal PotsSimilar to a tea cup ride, but with cauldrons instead of cups. I had just one go, in cauldron 2. Whilst the ride was in motion, I occasionally turned the table to vary the spin speed a little, but apart from that I sat back and went with the flow. This was my only go on here all day.
Wild River Log FlumeFunland's large log flume, which had been out of action so far. The attendants were now ready to start letting people on it. One attendant said to me "you can be the guinea pig", which implied I must have been the first visitor to ride this today. At this point I already had my cagoule on, but not my leggings. I didn't bother putting my leggings on before getting in the log. The log sailed out of the station, around a bend, through a tunnel and around another bend. There was a short delay just before the log went on to the lift hill further along; I wasn't sure whether that was intended or a fault with the ride which momentarily worried me. Anyway the log went on to the lift hill, up, around the u-bend at the top and down the big drop to create a mighty splash. My jogging bottoms got a bit wet (the last thing I wanted on a cold day), which made me regret not putting my leggings on prior to going on this ride. Finally the log entered the station and I disembarked. This one go now ended up being my only go on here all day.
Woody's Roller CoasterMy final two goes on this family coaster for today: one in the back row followed by one in the front row.
KlondikeI wasn't expecting to have any more goes on Klondike this late in the day, but being as I saw a few other riders approaching it, I took the opportunity to ride it again. This time I had one go in the third row (left seat), followed by one go in the second row (left seat).
Super DragonTo round off my day at Funland, there was just enough time for one final go on Super Dragon. I happened to be the only rider approaching this, so I sat in the front seat. This time one ride consisted of five laps. Once the ride ended, the time was just after 5pm, and therefore my daytime wristband had expired.
Immediately afterwards I left Funland and ran across to the bus stop as I had an inkling a bus to Havant was due soon.
Summary of day in order of activity:Woody's Roller Coaster 2
Super Dragon 2
Blizzard Falls Log Flume 4
Break Dancer 1
Silcock's Speed Flip 1
Walk around Funland
Flying Saucer 1
Woody's Roller Coaster 2
Lunch at Beachlands Café
Walk along sea front
Blizzard Falls Log Flume 2
Super Dragon 2
Blizzard Falls Log Flume 2
Woody's Roller Coaster 2
Helter Skelter 8
Break Dancer 1
Cannibal Pots 1
Wild River Log Flume 1
Woody's Roller Coaster 2
Super Dragon 1
Cumulative summary of my rides all day:
Blizzard Falls Log Flume
Silcock's Speed Flip
Wild River Log Flume
Woody's Roller Coaster
From Funland To HavantAt 5:03pm I was back at the bus stop. Other people were waiting there. Shortly afterwards I caught the number 31 bus to Havant Bus Station. Its clockwise route meant this was the best bus to catch this time. At 5:25pm I arrived Havant Bus Station. On arrival I went for a short walk around Havant town centre, including a churchyard.
Evening MealI decided to have my evening meal in Havant, and catch the bus back to Portsmouth afterwards. Around 5:45pm I went to The Parchment Makers (Wetherspoon). Once seated I took time looking at the menu. I chose Roast of the Day (half a chicken) for main course followed by sticky toffee pudding with custard for dessert. In addition I had half a pint of Old Thumper to drink with my dinner. Altogether a delicious, filling meal.
Journey To PortsmouthAfter leaving The Parchment Makers at 7:13pm it was just a short walk to Havant Bus Station. There I caught the 19:24 Stagecoach Coastliner 700 bus to Portsmouth. This took a different route to the number 23 this morning, which resulted in a much faster journey back to Portsmouth than the Portsmouth to Havant bus I caught this morning. I stayed on the Coastliner 700 bus all the way to The Hard Interchange, whereupon I had a quick change to number 17 First bus which took me to somewhere nearer my guest house. At 8:03pm I left that bus at a stop in Albert Road. Suddenly I became confused as to where I was, but fortunately I quickly found my whereabouts on my map. After that it was just a straightforward short walk back to my guest house.
I was back in my room at 8:10pm and relaxed there the rest of the evening.
HighlightsHigh ride count.
Rides mostly walk-on; the few queues that did occur were very short.
Riding the three coasters (Klondike, Woody's Roller Coaster, Super Dragon) again.
Six goes on Klondike one after another during the afternoon.
Evening meal at The Parchment Makers (Wetherspoon) Havant.
LowlightsSometimes I had to wait for others to turn up to be able to ride Klondike.
It was cold all day, but thankfully it was dry and sunny.
SummaryAltogether a great day out, my final send-off to the 2012 coaster season. Although a small park, I enjoyed riding three roller coasters, two log flumes, five other rides and a helter skelter. The park was extremely quiet, presumably because it was such a cold day. That often meant I was the only person wanting to go on a particular ride, and the few times there were others waiting there were only three or four others maximum. That allowed me to get a high overall ride count. However it created a problem for me riding Klondike; sometimes I was the only person waiting to go on it and had to wait for others to turn up. I generally overcame that problem by approaching Klondike when I saw other people about to go on it, and thus managed a total of 10 goes on it. For me the biggest surprise was seeing Flying Saucer from Paultons at Funland, and thus riding it at its new home for the first time since my last visit to Paultons in September 2010. As a RCCGB member my greatest satisfaction was riding all three coasters (Klondike, Woody's Roller Coaster, Super Dragon) again. Although exciting to ride, they're all steel though. Come on Funland, get some wood!