Thunder Road torn down at Carowinds

Thunder Road’s 39 year run came to an end at the hands of heavy equipment this week. I’m not a huge fan of rough wooden coasters, but in the past few years Carowinds had made a lot of improvements in this ride so I’m surprised that they removed it this year. That, and it was 39 years old. Seems like they could have given it another year to reach the 40 year mark.

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Cedar Point announces Gatekeeper

Cedar Point has announced their new project for 2013. It’s a wing rider from B & M called Gatekeeper. It will pass right over the entrance to the park, so it will serve as a beacon for all those coaster enthusiasts who stream into their park every year.  As if I didn’t have enough reason to come here before, they had to go and add something like this.

New for 2013:

On Ride Point of view:

Off Ride Point of view:

From the Cedar Point website:

Physical Dimensions

Track Length: 4,164 feet
Lift Height: 170 feet
Angle of Lift Hill: 40 degrees
Vertical Drop: 163 feet

Time, Speed, Capacity

Time: Approximately 2 minutes, 40 seconds
Maximum Speed: Approximately 67 mph
Capacity: Approximately 1,710 riders per hour


Ride Manufacturer: Bolliger & Mabillard (B&M), Monthey, Switzerland
Model: Full-circuit winged coaster
Structure: Steel tubular track


Trains: Three (3) 32-passenger trains
Coaches: Eight coaches, with four seats per coach, per train
Design: Fiberglass and steel coaches with over-the-shoulder restraints and interlocking seat belts

Color Scheme

Supports: White columns
Track: Azure Blue (dark blue) and Strata Blue (light blue) track
Train colors: Sunset Gold, with Zenith Gold, Meteor Gold and Orion Gold accents

Additional Facts

Ride Site: 3.5 Acres
Total 2013 Investment: Approx. $30 million


The ride layout is specially designed for Cedar Point, featuring a track that dramatically flies above the main entrance of the park, passing over arriving guests with rolling flyover maneuvers – twice, sliding by buildings and narrowly slotting through new front gate portals for near miss excitement. Elements of the ride include:

Wing Over Drop – once riders crest the top of the lift hill, the coaster train will rotate 180 degrees to the right, turning riders upside down before plummeting toward the ground at speeds of more than 65 mph!
Immelmann – a maneuver where riders enter a half loop, go through a half twist and curve out in the opposite direction from which they came.
Camelback – riders will fly over a giant, 105-foot-tall camelback hill that will be filled with “airtime!”
Giant Flat Spin – a hair-raising 360-degree flip that will provide two different ride experiences for guests on each side of the train.
Zero-G-Roll – a flying element that takes riders through two support towers that will dominate Cedar Point’s new Main Entrance.
Inclined Dive Loop – a tight, 180-degree turnaround pushes riders through an overbanked turn and rockets them back towards the station.
360° In-Line-Roll – an element that will take riders extremely close to the new massive support towers while flying over guests entering the park below.
Camelback Drop – a quick drop that will help propel the train and its guests through the rides final thrilling element, the spiral.
Spiral – GateKeeper’s track rotates a wicked 360 degrees before bringing the coasters train back to the ride station.

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