SIX FLAGS DARIEN LAKE
Buffalo, New York (Abbreviation: DL)
Known as Six Flags Darien Lake (1999 to 2006)
and as just Darien Lake (2007 to 2018)
Owned by EPR Properties
Managed by Six Flags Theme Parks
Park News - (12/31/20) According to a Screamscape source, we are hearing that Six Flags Darien Lake may remove the park’s Grizzly Run raft ride from the park as part of the budget cutting initiative from corporate headquarters that will see 15 rides removed across the chain before the start of the 2021 season. Apparently Grizzly Run was on the chopping block along with Shipwreck Falls, the park’s shoot the chutes water ride, and the later was actually the one most expected to get cut. According to our source Grizzly Run costs more to operate and sits on a sizable piece of land that could be put to use for other things in the future.
(9/13/20) According to posts on their social media, Six Flags Darien Lake has confirmed that the theme park will remain closed for the remainder of the 2020 season.
(6/29/20) While there has been no set date for when Six Flags Darien Lake might reopen, the local news reports that the closed theme park is now looking to hire 1,000 new employees in various roles around the park. With this in mind the park possibly could have been given a heads up to get themselves ready ahead of an official announcement from the state that might allow them to open once again.
(6/18/20) While Six Flags Darien Lake is not quite ready to reopen the theme park, they did announce that the attached Campground will open to guests once again on June 25, 2020.
(3/28/19) According to the Six Flags Darien Lake webpage, it claims that the park’s entrance will be revamped in time for the May 4th season opening, including the addition of “a towering, new digital pylon and a new Six Flags Darien Lake entrance sign.”
2020 - Wahoo Wave - (8/29/19) Six Flags Darien Lake will be adding a new waterslide for 2020 called Wahoo Wave, where sliders in 4-person rafts will climb six-stories and take a 30 foot plunge down straight into a giant wall element where they will spiral and stall out before falling back down once again to finish the adventure.
???? - Predator Upgrade - (11/8/20) Would you believe that Predator at Six Flags Darien Lake is getting an upgrade? According to an article about GCI and their new “Titan Track”, a hybrid track system they previewed at an IAAPA private event in 2019, GCI owner Clair Hain confirmed that he plans to install the new Titan Track system onto the Predator wooden coaster at Six Flags Darien Lake.
No timeline was given, and COVID-19 has thrown everything into chaos, but after a proof of concept test by installing a section of Titan Track onto White Lightning at Fun Spot America in Orlando back in August GCI is ready to begin pushing their new track system and will being to advertise it to their markets around the world.
This brings up a number of questions about what the future may hold for Predator. Since Six Flags is calling the shots right now, we know how they have used RMC to transform a number of their existing wooden coasters into new Hybrid creations. But when Six Flags and RMC started the concept with Texas Giant, they went more for a more traditional conversion keeping much of the Texas Giant layout as it was, while pumping up the thrills. Once the first coaster was a success, they began the process of going more wild with the future conversions, including the addition of inversions.
This also isn’t the first time Predator has been up for a possible conversion into a Hybrid coaster. Back when Herschend Family Entertainment was operating Darien Lake for a short time, they did hire RMC to draw up plans for to convert the old wooden coaster, known for a painful ride experience, into a new Hybrid creation that would have been renamed as the “Lake Monster”. Now it looks like Six Flags has decided to give GCI a shot at it, so it should be curious to see just what they come up with, and how wild or mild of a conversion they are willing to try.
Now lets keep the “mild” part of that sentence in mind for the time being. It is entirely possible that Predator may only be trying to smooth out the rough spots with sections of Titan Track, rather than go for a full replacement at this time. Six Flags did the same thing with The Rattler at Fiesta Texas, adding a test section of RMC’s “Topper Track” to a troublesome section of the ride the same year that RMC opened The New Texas Giant a few hours north at Six Flags over Texas. It wasn’t long before they decided to convert The Rattler into Iron Rattler with a full Hybrid conversion instead. Since it would be unlike someone like Clair Hain to totally slip and leak Six Flags’ plans for Predator in an interview, I’d have to say that his comments may indeed be more of a proof of concept test for Six Flags to evaluate how a section or two Titan Track works on one of their actual coasters that is in need of a future update.
Since Six Flags Darien Lake did not actually open in 2020 at all, GCI could arrive to begin work on Predator at any time, if they haven’t already. So just something for the local fans to keep an eye out for over the winter months.