Didn’t really look into +1s for this trip as it was so densely packed and it seemed almost rude to be considering it, but the temptation was a little too much to resist on this mostly free day.
Day 8 – Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster
Started off by knocking on the door at opening time for this contraption. I believe it was the first to be built in the area, starting a trend that is making them crop up next to every other building in the town at the moment.
My experience with these is quite limited, having only done a small one in a field. The lift hill alone on this was probably longer, it just kept going and going, winding its way up into the mountains and trees. This was quite cool, with the relatively exposed feeling you get sitting on a tea tray and it got all quiet and peaceful for a few minutes.
The downhill portion also just kept going and going and got reasonably intense at parts, aided by the fact I didn’t have particularly good pockets and kept having to adjust them with one hand while keeping the speed control lever pinned down in the other.
There was still the same old issue with alpines in that you’re attached to the rails and don’t get the same feeling of this could crash, unlike a tubey one.
Island in Pigeon Forge
Next on the list was this little thing in town. A quick and easy in and out job. Free parking, $4 ride, part of a bigger resort type area.
It played amusing music and we got some good looks from passersby for riding it. Next.
Got to the ticket desk for this place and asked if the coaster was open. It wasn’t going to open all day. Got some good looks from passersby for powering out again. Next.
Rocky Top Mountain Coaster
This one is directly opposite Dollywood’s car park, a prime spot to pick up trade.
We weren’t sure whether to bother doing more than 1 of these in succession, but it turned out that this ride was a significantly different experience to the previous one, which made it worthwhile.
Instead of one long up and down, it has several lifts and several downwards sections with some odd attempts at theming along the way.
There were people actively working on construction within one part of it, then there’s some sheds with old tools in, some tunnels, a bloke in a watchtower asking how your day is going and speaker announcements saying the bear is coming to get you.
It wasn’t as good a ride with all the stopping, but fun and different nonetheless.
That’s enough of that.
Had another fulfilling day at this wonderful park. Mostly the same itinerary, here’s some photo highlights:
Rode the train which was awesome. It’s driven by a full size engine that proper smokes up the Smoky Mountains and comes with audio warnings at the start of the adventure about getting hot cinders in your eyes. Jeopardy on a gentle ride.
Lots of good commentary from the staff before it plays amazingly appropriate country songs including one about the devil driving a long black train.
Mmmm construction. Also spite.
Any time I go away on a trip, I shall now put this sign up.
Glorious day. Was sad leaving Tennessee that night.