Roller coasters race up and down tracks at county fairs and theme parks around the world, bringing hair-raising thrills to children of all ages. Sometimes called “scream machines,” roller coasters have been the main attraction wherever they are for more than a century.
The coasters of today are taller, faster and wilder than ever before, causing operators to offer photos that capture the experience at the pinnacle of its excitement. Just making it to the end of the thrilling ride is cause for celebration for most riders. Others need more and sometimes stage that moment when the camera flashes, bringing us the wacky photos in this gallery.
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For many of us, there are few things more American or summer-like than Brooklyn‘s Coney Island. It’s been the site of family fun, local seediness, freaks of nature, and luxury development plans. Throughout its many iterations, Coney Island has retained its particular mix of beach, carnival, and city resort. Today’s Photo of the Day by Flickr user David Ellwood captures Coney Island’s Cyclone, one of America’s oldest wooden roller coasters and an icon of summer and amusement parks. The Cyclone celebrates 85 years of thrills this year, and hopefully will continue to spell summer fun for years to come.
Perhaps director Fernando Livschitz and the gang at Black Sheep Films were hitting the mate a bit too hard when they conceptualized this trippy video, but the result is a whimsical thrill ride through Buenos Aires‘ historic sites, including the Presidential Palace (La Casa Rosada).
The Mangyongdae Funfair is a North Korean amusement park known for its rusting rides and harnesses that don’t quite lock. For North Koreans, it’s an amusement park the same as Disney World is an amusement park for Americans. Being that there are only roughly 1,500 Western tourists that travel to North Korea each year (compounded by the fact that each traveler must have a guide with him or her at all times), few Western travelers ever experience the Mangyongdae Funfair, and so there are few photos of the rickety, but still-working amusement park surfacing online–at least within the online destinations I frequent. A recent post on Kuriositas.com, however, displayed some great photos of the park. After viewing the photos, I was moved to share that link, as well as a couple other good ones, with you.
And so, here they are, amuse yourselves with photos of this famed destination park.
After months of releasing coded clues and hints via a fictitious engineering website reminiscent of the Dharma Initiative from ABC’s Lost, Hersheypark unveiled its highly anticipated 2012 roller coaster. Dubbed Skyrush, the steel roller coaster will dominate the park’s skyline with a 200-foot tall peak. The ride will begin with an unusually speedy ascent to the top of the lift hill. Then, riders will be treated to a layout indicative of hyper coasters: high speeds, banked turns, and airtime hills. Loved by coaster fans, the airtime hills are designed to provide a weightless sensation at the crests.
Skyrush’s most intriguing feature may be its floorless seats. Each wing-shaped row of four seats will have two floored seats in the middle and two floorless seats on the edges. I’d imagine thrill junkies like myself will be scrambling for those outer seats. Roller coasters with this kind of layout and these stats aren’t rare, but the swift climb up the lift hill and the ride’s first-of-its-kind trains do make Skyrush look interesting.