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Mountain/Alpine Coaster or Alpine Slide Discussion Thread


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Longest Mountain Coaster in North America?

 

CHARLEMONT — Berkshire East Ski Resort is on track to install the longest mountain coaster ride in North America, now that the Planning Board has unanimously approved a special permit for the new attraction at the ski area/canopy tour facility.

 

The total, mile-long galvanized steel track includes a short climb from the base of the ski area up to a crest, with a 3,775-foot-long, winding descent down a hillside, where there are no ski trails. The 30 two-seater coaster carts travel the galvanized steel tracks on wheels made out of the same material as Rollerblade wheels, so the ride is quiet. The cars are able to travel up to speeds of 27 mph — which feels much faster to passengers in the open carts.

 

“It’s literally the most fun thing I’ve ever done,” said James Schaefer, a co-owner of the family-run business. “We’ve tested it extensively, and it’s really going to be good for the town,” he told the Planning Board Thursday night.

 

The carts are pulled to the crest with a wire that disengages before the cart travels downward. The passengers wear seat belts, but if they unbuckle them, the cart stops automatically. Also, there is automatic braking if the cart in front stops.

 

“This is a true collision-avoidance system,” said co-owner Jon Schaefer.

 

Jon Schaefer said he’s wanted to install a mountain coaster for about five years, but Berkshire East has been busy with other projects — the wind turbine and solar array that generate enough power to run all the equipment, installing the zip lines for the canopy tours, and building a large lodge extension, which is still under construction.

 

“We want this to be a primary portion of our business,” he said of the coaster. “It will be run year-round.”

 

He said the track will be installed in a nice “out-of-the-way spot. It’s unusable terrain for anything else.”

 

When asked if the project will include tree-clearing, Jon Schaefer said the plan is to clear an area at least 12 feet wide. The resort will work with Tighe & Bond Engineering, which will be doing environmental work. He said the engineers will write an environmental site plan to be presented to the Conservation Commission. He said some dying beech trees will be removed, and that Berkshire East will work with a forester to assess the health of the trees near the track.

 

“The goal is to keep it looking natural,” said Jon Schaefer. “We’re in the uphill/downhill business, so we want the hillside to look nice.”

 

The mountain coaster will run year-round, but the Schaefers expect most of the demand to come May through October.

 

The Planning Board approved the special permit, but continued the meeting until Jan. 2 ­to write a required report of the approval process. A 21-day appeal period would begin after the board submits its report.

 

Link: http://www.gazettenet.com/news/stateregion/9929894-95/mountain-coaster-ride-approved-for-berkshire-east-in-charlemont

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Probably not the type of slide you would expect, but I consider it an alpine slide. It's called Fantasticable and can be found at several places in Europe. I rode the one in the east of France, near the Belgian border.

Here are the short videos I shot.

off ride

[youtu_be]http://youtu.be/mR9eqll18hs[/youtu_be]

 

pov

[youtu_be]http://youtu.be/4oDlVe7v9TE[/youtu_be]

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On the TPR Tour in 2012 I had a horrible first ride on it because I few idiots on the tour ignored Robb's suggestion that if you are not going to go balls out get to the get of the line so you don't ruin the ride for those behind you. So what do we get, TWO, not one, but TWO tour members who insisted on staying in the front of the line and they proceeded down the course like pussies.

Same here! At least in my case it was some random kid, but I believe they were still going inappropriately slowly.

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  • 6 months later...

New mountain coaster coming to the Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area; this time for Ober Gatlinburg.

 

http://www.wate.com/story/26053990/mountain-roller-coaster-to-open-this-fall-at-ober-gatlinburg

 

Mountain roller coaster to open this fall at Ober Gatlinburg

 

GATLINBURG (WATE) - Ober Gatlinburg is adding a new roller coaster which will be open year round.

 

The ADG Mountain Coaster is set to open this fall, nestled just below the peak of Mt. Harrison.

 

Ober officials say the coaster will provide thrills with fantastic views.

 

Ober is partnering with ADG, Inc. of Cohoes, New York, to bring the attraction to the top of Ski Mountain Road. The ride will last about 5 and a half minutes and cover nearly 4,000 feet.

 

Construction will begin near the end of July.

 

The mountain coaster will depart near the Tubing Park and begin with a slow uphill ride through woods that border the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Once at the top, riders will be whisked down turns, dips, zigs, zags, corkscrews and G-force action adventures.

 

Ober says children, parents and grandparents can comfortable enjoy the ride and choose their own pace down the mountain.

 

Ober Gatlinburg Ski Area and Amusement Park is Tennessee’s only ski Area and continues to be a favored year-round destination. The upcoming 2014-2015 season will mark Ober Gatlinburg’s 53rd year as a snow sports area, offering skiing, snowboarding, and tubing in the winter and an alpine slide, scenic chairlift, chair swing, maze, water raft rides and mini golf in the summer. The Mountain Coaster will join the Wildlife Encounter, Arcade and Ober’s Indoor Ice Rink as a year-round attraction.

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aw man, I was just at Ober Gatlinburg! Man, as soon as I leave and won't be coming back, they decide to build an alpine coaster? So including the goat coaster at goats on the roof, that means there will be 3 alpine coasters in the same general area. Why does everything happen when I leave?

 

But, good for Ober Gatlinburg. This will fit perfectly with their terrain and their current alpine slide.

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^Yeah, I've been to places that have both, but the slides are really disappearing due to insurance, operations, etc. The coasters can run in a lot more weather types, require less staff, and are much safer.

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Is this the same or a different company that built the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster in Pigeon Forge? Looking forward to riding both eventually.

 

Most of the North American Alpine coasters are from Wiegand, including Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster.

 

ADG purchased Alpine Products a few year ago, and their two existing Alpine Product coasters are at Attitash (New Hampshire) and Camelback (Pennsylvania). ADG is building this one in Ober Gatlinburg

Edited by larrygator
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this year, I finally got to try Mountain Creeks alpine coaster. I rode it in the winter when I was up at the park for snow tubing, and a few weeks ago while at Action Park. I didn't like it as much as the old alpine slide tracks they had back in the 80's/90's. But it was nice that you could ride it in the winter, on a snow covered mountain.

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Is this the same or a different company that built the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster in Pigeon Forge? Looking forward to riding both eventually.

 

Most of the North American Alpine coasters are from Wiegand, including Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster.

 

ADG purchased Alpine Products a few year ago, and their two existing Alpine Coaster are at Attitach (New Hampshire) and Camelback (Pennsylvania). ADG is building this one in Ober Gatlinburg

 

Thanks Larry. I'm really unfamiliar with alpine coaster companies and wonder is there sort of an Intamin/RMC of that world who will push the limits. It's great there'll be two of these in the same general vicinity for comparison purposes between Wiegand and ADG.

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I think Wiegand was the only manufacturer of these coasters until Alpine Products built the one in New Hampshire (I could be wrong). Wiegand used to have a list of all their installations on their website, but I can't find it any more)

 

ADG does not have a large portfolio of Alpine Coaster installations. I really don't know who else builds them, as I've only looked into the North American installations.

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  • 8 months later...

According to Weigand's website there are now 193 installations.

 

There's the four installations from ADG/Alpine Products, inlcuding the new one in Tennessee.

 

I can find three built by Erbschloe; one in France, one in Slovakia, and one in Russia.

.

 

And then there's Brandauer (English PDF) summer toboggans, which have single rails. I count 35 of those.

 

193+4+3+35 = about 235 alpine coasters worldwide.

Edited by shivtim
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Greek Peak Mountain, Cortland County, New York "Nor'easter Mountain Coaster" - opened June 2011 - 4,300 feet - $10

 

A good sized alpine slide opened barely an hour away from me almost four years ago and I never heard of it? Well, that's a pleasant surprise. I might just make a TR when I finish this semester.

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Greek Peak Mountain, Cortland County, New York "Nor'easter Mountain Coaster" - opened June 2011 - 4,300 feet - $10

 

A good sized alpine slide opened barely an hour away from me almost four years ago and I never heard of it? Well, that's a pleasant surprise. I might just make a TR when I finish this semester.

 

JBoss, I recently rode the Mountain Coaster in Ellicotville, NY this winter. It's pretty close to Buffalo. Did you know about this one?

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^Nope, not that one either, but it's less than half the length of the Cortland one, more expensive and twice as far away. I'm quite happy about this, though admittedly slightly disappointed in myself for not knowing.

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^Nope, not that one either, but it's less than half the length of the Cortland one, more expensive and twice as far away. I'm quite happy about this, though admittedly slightly disappointed in myself for not knowing.

 

Well it's still fun! I recommend riding it sometime when you're near. I was surprised they were running it at 8 at night when it was snowing and 16 degrees in December. It was cool to have that "coaster in the snow" experience.

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