This is the ride review for Pony Express from Knott’s Berry Farm.
Pony Express opened in 2008 in the back corner of the park. Pony Express is located next to Bigfoot Rapids in the Ghost Town area of the park. Pony Express is themed after the Pony Express mail service from the old west and is a Zamperla coaster. Pony Express has 2 trains with 16 riders per train. In these trains riders ride horses which are located with 2 on a row for 8 rows. The ride is a launch coaster and travels over the existing locomotive that the park also operates.
When you arrive at Pony Express you’ll see the Ghost Towns grave yard where the train is launched from behind. You keep walking past the park’s Bigfoot Rapids and the station from Pony Express becomes visible. When you see a barn like building you know you’ve arrived at the line. Their is a pretty small 3D sign that says Pony Express as well as a test seat for the larger guests. When you enter the ride you will basically walk up the ramps past the transfer tracks. Once you’ve arrived at the station you can choose where in the train to sit. Once you board the horses a restraint will come up from behind, and you will be locked into your seat (horse). The train’s restraints will then be checked and you’re off to the launch segment.
Once you went around the corner you will stop. You will notice that the train will eventually roll back a little to get positioned correctly in the launch system. The train will then launch riders to a speed of 38 MPH. It’s a pretty nice launch, it’s nothing extreme but since you are seated on a ‘horse’ the launch is still really nice since it’s so unique. After the launch the train will go up around a banked turn. This turn is followed by a small airtime hill that bends over the station, the train will then make a little zigzag movement where riders experience a nice mix of G’s. This movement is followed by another 180 turn in a tunnel which elevates the track to the point where the brakes kick in and the riders are returned to the station.
Pony Express is a fun ride and fits the park’s audience since it’s clearly a family styled coasters. On the other hand, the ride is rather short, and the ride is often only operating with one train because of that. When the ride is only operating one train, the line may seems short but it can turn out to be a long line.
When talking about the lines anyways, there are practically no lines for Pony Express for the first 2-3 hours of operation. From around 1-5 the lines are longer once again, and then there is a period of about 2 hours where the lines tend to be a bit shorter again. Even though Knott’s is never really crowded at night, the ride seems to have lines constantly after 6’30PM, this due to it’s location in the park. There is not much to do in the dark in that area of the park, so guests choose to ride Pony Express.
Pony Express is definitely not the best ride in the park but it’s a fun ride that is unique in CA and is definitely a ride you would be able to ride over and over again with your family.