What’s Going On?!
As we leaked on our Facebook page the other day, the “black sheep” of Kings Dominion’s wooden roller collection, Hurler, is officially “Closed for Season.” Below we’ve included a picture showing the notice displayed beside the ride on this year’s map.
Naturally, since that post, we have seen the entire spectrum of passionate opinions and reactions from our social media followers. Feedback has included everything from wild excitement about the possibility of Hurler’s total removal to sadness from people who don’t want Kings Dominion to lay a finger on the park’s 1994 International Coasters triple out-and-back woodie.
The loudest shouts we’ve heard, however, have come from both the “Bring in Rocky Mountain Construction!” camp, who would like to see an IBox conversion of Hurler, and the “Don’t replace it, refurbish it!” proponents, who would like Hurler to be reprofiled and renovated while keeping its layout largely unchanged.
According to Kings Dominion, the “renovate and update” camp will be getting their wish with Hurler by 2017.
KDFans had the chance to speak to Katelyn Sherwood, the park’s PR & Communications Manager, following Kings Dominion’s Pass Holder Preview Day presentation earlier today. According to Katelyn, Hurler is planed to reopen for the 2017 season, after an extensive renovation. Unfortunately, details on what such a renovation would theoretically entail are still a bit slim.
State of the Ride
As far as we could see in the park today, work has not yet begun on Hurler’s refurbishment—both the coaster and the surrounding area seem to be entirely untouched. In fact, as we walked up to the ride, we watched a park employee setting up a small sign notifying guests that the ride is closed. We’ve included a picture of said sign below.
Other than that temporary sign and the chain across the queue, Hurler really does look ready to open. The pictures below show the current state of the attraction as of March 20th. As far as we could see, there aren’t any missing or replaced pieces of wood around the course as of yet. It is also worth noting that the fresh planks that can be seen on a few of the handrails in the pictures below were added late last year while the ride was still operating.
Hurler Isn’t Alone
On a semi-related note, Hurler wouldn’t be the first coaster to have extensive work invested into it by Kings Dominion lately. The park put a ton of time and money into rebuilding significant parts of Rebel Yell heading into the 2015 season and, as you can see in the picture below, they have done the same again this year with Grizzly. It seems as though Hurler’s closure and renovation fits perfectly inline with this recent push to update and smooth out the park’s woodie collection.