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of 141 feet (43 m) and a maximum speed of 30 mph (48 kph). Owner Blair Retchin says that Rocky Top is the longest coaster ride in East Tennessee. Illuminated for night riding, it sits on over 20 acres (8 hectares) of beautiful Smoky Mountain scenery. If you see goats on the roof then you are at The

Coaster at Goats on the Roof, just down the road from the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster. Built by Wiegand Sports and opened in January 2016, it is the first to be built by Wiegand with computer controlled collision avoidance. The 5,080 foot (1,548 m) long ride rises up 1,860 feet (567 m) for a 398 foot (121 m) difference in elevation. Riders race 3,220 feet (981 m) downhill at speeds reaching 27 to 30 mph (43 to 48 kph). Banked curves make it feel faster. Two thrill rides at found at Rowdy Bear Mountain

Adventure Park in Gatlinburg. The Rowdy Bear Alpine Coaster opened in July 2017. A Wiegand ride with collision avoidance, it is 5,280 feet (1,609 m) long and hits a top speed of between 27 and 34 mph (43 and 55 kph). A second Wiegand Mountain Coaster is set to open in 2020.

Hairpin Turns Rowdy Bear is also home to the first Mountain Glider. It’s a Rollglider built by Walltopia, the first in the U.S. The Rollglider is an aerial ride, which combines the


Before there were mountain coasters, there were alpine slides, or Sommerrodelbahn in German. A long chute on the side of a hill, it is normally found at ski resorts to provide some summer income. A wheeled cart is used similar to a bobsled, except that it rolls over a smooth track of concrete, stainless steel, or fiberglass rather than sliding on ice. The cart is controlled by a hand brake, which is unique among amusement park rides in that the rider has complete control over his or her speed. The rider is expected to not go too fast. What could possibly go wrong?

thrill of free falling and hang gliding into one ride. It’s

a bit like a cross between an inverted coaster and a zip line. There’s a lift hill leading to a twisted overhead rail. Riders sit in a harness hung below the track and are free to swing out around the turns. The two and one-half minute ride on the Mountain Glider features a 90 foot (27 m) drop. Ober Gatlinburg’s Ski Mountain Coaster was built

by ADG with built-in collision avoidance and a seatbelt monitoring system. It opened in 2016. Nestled just below the peak of Mt. Harrison, it is the highest coaster east of the Mississippi and offers guests both thrills and fantastic views. It is very steep, with a variety of animals that may be sighted along the way. The coaster departs near the Tubing Park and begins with a tranquil uphill ride through the beautiful Ober Gatlinburg woods that border the Smoky Mountain National Park. Once at the top, riders are whisked down sweeping turns, dips, zigs, zags, corkscrews, and G-force adventures, Track length is 3,750 feet (1,142 m) with a 1,000 foot (305 m) lift and 2,750 feet (838 m) of descending track. The ride takes five to seven minutes at a top speed of between 25 and 30 mph (40 and 48 kph). Hourly capacity is between 250 and 350. The Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster was build in

2014 by Wiegand. Measuring 3,346 feet (1,020 m) long, riders can hit a top speed of more than 35 mph (56 kph) through a forested area with large sweeping S-curves. A difference in elevation of 229


feet (70 m) begins with a lift of 770 feet (235 m) before riders negotiate a downhill section measuring 2,576 feet (785 m). It is open year round in rain, snow, and sunshine, with both day and night hours. Rail Runner, Anakeesta’s new single-rail mountain

coaster is the first of its kind in the United States, the second in North America. The supplier, Brandauer, built the first in Canada at Ravelstoke, British Columbia. Opened in May, 2018, Rail Runner is 2,600 feet (792 m) long As a single-rail line, riders can ride lower to the ground on a single track enhancing the sense of speed and creating a thrilling and unique experience as they race through the trees while flying down the mountain. It also allows them to control their own speed if they prefer a slower pace. The Anakeesta Rail Runner takes riders on an exhilarating downhill ride with steep declines and hairpin turns with a 400 foot (122 m) elevation change. It can hit speeds of 27 mph (43 kph). The ride begins with 1,600 feet (488 m) of downhill twists and turns and ends with a scenic uphill ride back to the top of Anakeesta Mountain. Riders can ride solo or tandem with a small child. Rail Runner carts feature back and headrests for a comfortable and safe ride. It is the most challenging mountain coaster in the area to ride brakeless.


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