Nothing says “summer” better than a hot day at a theme park. But in the US, there are dozens of amusement parks to choose from, and deciding which one to visit can be difficult. However, if you’re looking for a family-friendly environment with rides for all ages of your troupe, your search is over. Adventureland USA in Altoona, Iowa has it all with amusements ranging from the little kiddie rides to the daring and dangerous. And if you’re like me, the “daring and dangerous” roller coasters suit you well. So buckle your safety harnesses, strap in your carry-on, and get ready for the top five wildest rides at Adventureland USA!
Tornado: Ranked as on of the top ten best wooden roller coasters, Tornado delivers the goods with speeds of 60 miles per hour and up. Hold your breath as you embark on the intense ascension up Tornado’s steep initial incline, and be prepared to catch your stomach as you plummet over 100 feet to the ground at an angle dangerously close to ninety degrees! Your heart will literally be in your throat as the explosion of speed hurls you around the tracks, through hairpin turns, and around hazardous curves. Just as you contemplate begging for mercy, you’re launched through the finish line with a jolting halt. But one word of advice to the wise: check your seatbelt even after the ride inspectors do; mine flew open just before the plunge, and I was left clinging to the safety bar for dear life!
The Outlaw: Just inside of Outlaw Gulch and within a stone’s throw of Tornado, be prepared to encounter The Outlaw. Don’t let this bad boy fool you; it’s not a ride for the weak of heart… er, stomach. With a G-Force of 3.2 and speeds exceeding 60 miles per hour, it’s doesn’t take but a minute before your heart races as fast as the coaster. Buckle in for a breathtaking ride as The Outlaw challenges death-defying heights, whips up and around its wooden rails and plummets down steep drops, taking you along for the ride!
The Dragon: As an avid roller coaster fan, I love the thrill of any coaster that turns me upside-down and through multiple loops. But The Dragon is more than just a series of loops and a G-Force of 4.5; it’s a head challenge. Of all the jostling, bumpy, tragic roller coaster side-effects, this fire-breathing monster takes the cake! Your head is whipped in every direction but loose as you face double upside-down loops and spirals projecting you ten stories above the ground. Another word to the wise: keep your head rigid!
The Sidewinder: Are you afraid of snakes? If so, there’s plenty to fear in The Sidewinder! Saddle up in this scaly varmint’s seats and lift your legs as the floor drops out from beneath you, and you gradually begin a spinning, spiraling lift up to the sky. Once you’re stories above the crowd, you realize there’s no turning back as you are hurled back and forth while at the same time spinning at an alarming rate! With legs flying and warm air in your face, there’s no ride quite comparable to the tricky, sneaky Sidewinder!
The Splash Over: Prepare for soggy shoes and a wet behind as you board Splash Over, the wildest water ride in Adventureland! As your harness descends upon you, get a good look in front of you at a pool filled with spouting fountains of water. Before you know it, that very water will grace your lap. As you’re lifted high into the sky, fountains of water explode into the air, soaking your body as Splash Over inverts you multiple times in a row, both forwards and backwards. This upside-down fantasy is fast and furious and loaded with thrills, so Splash Over is one ride you don’t want to miss!
If you’ve been craving a summer day at a theme park, Adventureland USA is definitely for you. So head on over and have some fun already!