Fuji Q Day 1

We arrived at Fuji-Q late in the afternoon, and the bad weather wasn't anywhere to be seen. In fact it was a glorious day. This had unfortunately brought a lot of people to the park making it the busiest park of the trip so far, by quite a way!

Fuji means "king" and Yama means "mountain", making this coaster, Fujiyama, the self-proclaimed king of coasters, and with a lift hill like that I couldn't really argue with the claim. We did try to ride it but the queue line was closed as the park was apparently closing soon.

Like Nagashima Spaland, the park has a Giant Frisbee and a mouse coaster. Both of these had closed their queue lines for the day. Can you detect the pattern here?

Opposite Fujiyama is Dodonpa and like everything else this one had closed it's queue line for the day, so all we could do is look at it and hope it would be open tomorrow for us to ride. Dodonpa has the fastest acceleration of any coaster on the planet going from 0-107mph in 1.8 seconds.

From the launch the car flies around a huge sweeping bend before hitting the most visible element of the track.

The 170ft vertical lift hill, that sits in the centre of the park.

I found an attraction that was open, the park's Big Wheel so I rode on that to get some better pictures of the park. This is the Dodonpa car hitting the hill.

The only thing to take pics of was the Dodonpa ride, which actually isn't an exciting ride to take pictures as it is a 2-trick pony. It has an insane launch and a ridiculous hill, and that's it really. Still that is one more trick than Oblivion at Alton Towers.

This was one of my favourite pictures from the trip, somehow I've managed to make the hill look a lot higher than it actually is! At Nara I had reported on how when nervous, the Japanese retreat into the car and lean forward which can be dangerous at certain bits of the track. The girl in the front is demonstrating this perfectly here, I only hope she sat up when the car got to the bottom of the drop.

I couldn't wait to ride this thing, and didn't want to tempt fate by hoping it would be open tomorrow. I guess we'd know when we woke up the next day. This was the one coaster that I would have been gutted not to ride. I'd heard that at this point, when the car is cresting the hill the G-Forces give you plenty of ejector air-time that launch you out of the seat.

After negotiating the crest of the hill, the ride dives back down the hill and into a tunnel.

Then from the tunnel the car heads around a couple more bends before returning to the station.

On the other side of the park the skyline is dominated by Mt. Fuji, which at almost 4000 metres high is Japan's highest mountain (and volcano for the pedants). Fuji has gone through various forms as it erupts and in the past has been FossaMagna, Mikasa Sanchi, Komitake, Kofuji, Shinfuji and then Mt. Fuji. It last erupted in 1707. Some of us had been looking forward to some sort of natural event to hit the country while we were out there. Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your outlook) we didn't experience any earthquakes during our stay there. A volcanic eruption, whilst exciting, wouldn't have been wanted given how close we were.

In the front of volcano is the park hotel, and guess where we're staying? Yep, in there on the higher floors. If lucky we'd have a stunning view of Mt. Fuji from the bedroom window. If even luckier we'd be overlooking the park. I wonder what side of the hotel I'll get!

Here's a better shot of the Mad Mouse coaster, which didn't appear to have the standard mouse layout. Even with its nice theming it still managed to look like it had just been stuck on a spare bit of concrete.

Fujiyama looked like the more interesting coaster. It was pretty high and with nothing around it as big, must have offered some pretty exciting views around the area. Still there's always tomorrow. The decision would be which to ride first, Dodonpa or this one? Both rides are big crowd magnets.

Before hitting the hill, Dodonpa circles a grass verge that had become a meeting place for everyone wanting to take pictures of the ride. At one end they'd even built a mini rock hill for us to climb to get even better pictures.

See, I told you! It was a nice touch allowing everyone to see a lot of the ride. Actually all of this was man made as it sat atop some other attractions buried underneath.

This was one of the more common shots, testing our camera speed against a car whizzing around at close to 90 mph in front of Mt. Fuji. I think I did alright considering. Light levels were starting to fall so I ventured elsewhere into the park.

This is the easily memorable "Fuwa Fuwa Osoa No Dai-Bouken" coaster. I have no idea what it means but it's not "Birdmen" , which was the coaster's original name before someone fell out of it. It used to be a face down flying coaster but following the incident changed to an inverted coaster.

The park also has a "something"ship ride. If you guessed "pirate" then well done, see Japanese is easy once you get the hang of it!

This is one of the park's popular meeting spots. The Japanese do tend to congregate around statues for some reason, whether it be Hachiko the dog at Shibuya, Godzilla at Ginza or this cute pirate mouse thing situated between the entrance to Fuya Fuya and the pirate ship.

Now its getting dark, and I you must be wondering how long we were actually in this park, and if it was so long why were the ride queues closed, and I'd be wondering the exact same thing. At the end of the day however it's the park rules and you just have to go with the flow.

Nice to see the park had a water splash, but it was closed and to be honest I wouldn't want to ride it so late at night.

Heading out of the park and the overnight maintenance on the rides was starting. This park certainly isn't attempting to keep their lorries low key. A nice attempt at a pun in calling the vehicle the "res-Q" truck.

The last ride to close was the Giant Frisbee, which is a bit odd given that these things usually eat through queue lines like nobody's business.

The one attraction that comes to life at night is the park's giant wheel, which starts its light show all through the night.

A final shot of Fujiyama for the day, it does look really imposing.

This truck served no purpose other than to be a backdrop to visitor's photos. Well at least whilst we were there it wasn't doing anything else. The park was now closed and they were ushering us out of the park and back to the hotel.

Once again, the club got top billing. I would be pretty miffed if I was there with JTB Sunrise Tours. So it was up to the room and time to find out whether I had a park view or a Fuji view.

I guess this answers it. Certainly the best night time view from a hotel window on this trip.
Although the park was closed, the night was still young and although we were in the middle of nowhere there was still a few establishments down the road to go and investigate.

We ended up eating in what could best be described as a Japanese take on the American roadside diner, at least it felt like we had stepped into an IHOP. I had a fish dish, and pigged out on dessert too! After the food we had a quick look in an arcade and Pachinko parlour across the street. With Pachinko not being my forte I had a quick go on the drum game and registered the highest score on the Harley Davidson motorcycling game. People that know me will know about how obsessive I can get at wanting to get top score every time I come across the machine.

Then it was back to the hotel for some sleep. Word had gotten out that everyone would be rushing to Dodonpa in the morning, as it would be opening first. Looks like it'll be an early start then.

Obligatory messy bedroom shot!

The morning view, with the wheel back to its subdued daytime state. Dodonpa, here we come!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"This is one of the park's popular meeting spots. The Japanese do tend to congregate around statues for some reason, whether it be Hachiko the dog at Shibuya, Godzilla at Ginza or this cute pirate mouse thing situated between the entrance to Fuya Fuya and the pirate ship."

This is a statue of Hamtaro, If I'm not mistaken. This pirate ship seems to be themed around the show, as you can make out various 'Ham-Hams' about; such as Bijou and Hamtaro in the Crows Nest. ^_^; I apologize if my information is mistaken.

7:59 PM  
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