Alpengeist @ Busch Gardens Williamsburg | Coaster Reviews

Roller Coaster Reviews

Alpengeist: The F-22 of Roller Coasters
From the first time I saw the ominous white lift high above the surrounding trees while on Loch Ness, I knew it would be a ride to remember. In my opinion, this is the king of the inverted roller coasters not just because of its height and speed, but because it delivers thrills with every ride. On inverted coasters riders are situated below the track in ski-lift style trains. I have to say I’ve grown to respect some of the more compact inverts out there, but Alpengeist is still the best.

First there’s the intimidating (almost 200′ tall) lift hill where you find yourself wondering when you’ll get to the top. The view past your dangling feet of the ground and even trees far below is pretty unnerving. After the lift hill you fly down an enormous swooping drop that puts the train on its way to breaking the sound barrier (at least it feels like it). Then an Immelman inversion so tall and smooth you can just barely feel the inversion, followed by a tall vertical loop with some great g-forces. And now you’re on the way to meet Loch Ness down by the Rhine River where you hit an extreme, sometimes rough, cobra roll featuring two back to back inversions. Next, you move through a mid-course brake run, drop out of the run with a little pop of airtime through a short themed tunnel and into a sweet zero-g roll. The roll is followed by a nice corkscrew and helix combination. The sequence after the brakes is one of the best around in my opinion.

Where some rides tend to peter out towards the end, this one delivers right up until your uproarious return to the station. So Alpengeist gets a rare 10 from me because: it’s a terrain ride (meaning it wasn’t just plopped down on a parking lot or some flat lot of land), it’s massive (over three minutes of ride time), it’s fast, it’s themed pretty well (with little touches manySuperior Coaster Reviews won’t even notice), and it’s relatively smooth. You may experience an occasional headbang, but it’s far from a head-bang-athon like all of those Mind Eraser installations all over the country. On top of all that it delivers thrills and gives you a unique experience. That’s a 10 in my book! Final Rating – 10 (Superior)

Intense Roller Coasters - For Adventurous RidersAlpengeist is rated ‘IN’ for Intense. It’s a 4 out of 5 on my Thrill Scale for of its height, speed, and loops.

What’s Your Take?
What do you think about Alpengeist? Leave a comment below.

Founder of CoasterCritic.com. My favorite coasters are B&M hypers and gigas. I'm also a huge fan of terrain roller coasters.

33 Comments

  1. I agree totally. This is the best inverted coaster I have ridden. There is the nice drop to start off with, cool G-forces through the hut (which is in the video) and the corkscrews are cool too. Overall VERY cool ride. I've been to Cedar Point along with many other theme parks and this is definitely worth the visit to Busch Gardens even if this is the only ride you ride! This park has bang for the buck.

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  2. Indeed. Bang for the buck is a good way to sum up Busch Gardens Europe. So many sleep on it because it doesn't have as many coasters as a lot of parks. BGE makes up for it with quality over quantity and Alpengeist is the perfect example. Thanks for stopping by Lewis.

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  3. Would this ride be too scary for people who have fun on fast wooden roller coasters but enjoy having a smooth ride without a lot of bumps?Is this ride a good for people who throw up when spun around for a long time?

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  4. Alpengeist is quite different from your standard wooden coaster. It's definitely fast and smooth, so bumps aren't really a worry. There is a sequence of loops than can get a little rough, but if you ride towards the front of the train you can minimize the roughness. And I wouldn't think Alpie would make you sick. The loops are fairly quick and only really back-to-back during that kind of rough cobra roll by the Loch Ness. Unless your stomach is extra sensitive and given that you don't fill up at Das Festhaus right before riding you should be fine. Enjoy! And let me know how it goes.

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  5. While I wouldn't say this is as good as the two older coasters in the park, I enjoyed myself trmendously on Alpengeist. I loved the theme touches (the fake skier sticking out of the top of a building makes me laugh every time). Definately don't eat before going on it, and DO NOT wear flip flops or any other loose shoes or you "will lose them forever and ever!" as the ride director announces before the train departs. Fun, memorable, and I'd ride it again and again.

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  6. actually I recently rode it with flip flopsa and they somehow stayed on.

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  7. i always wanted to ride this since its larger than montu (that sucks but that busch gardens europe for ya.) it does look great i hope i get a chance to ride it without youtube. speaking of montu do you have a review for it i didn't see it under reviewed roller coasters?

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    • Malcolm, I can review Montu in the next few weeks. There are a few reviews that I've got to get to first. For now, here's a roller coaster moment post I did on Montu. It's a great ride!

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  8. For me, I was actually a little disappointed in the ride. I've ridden four inverts: Alpengeist, Montu, Afterburn, and B:TR. The other three outmatch Alpengeist by intensity in my opinion, which came as a real shock. Because the ride is so huge, I expected it to be more intense than it was. I felt a lot more forces in the back of the train, but riding in the front seemed almost forceless. In comparison to the other inverts I've ridden, no matter where you sit, forces are always there. The cobra roll was the only intense part of the ride. I also found the zero-g roll to be very weak, as the train glides through it rather slow. Probably the biggest gripe I had was the break on the 1st drop before the train starts its dive, and how harsh the mid-course brakes are applied. It's still a good ride not to be missed, but it definitely did not mesmerize me.

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    • I'll have to re-ride Alpengeist towards the front next time I'm at Busch Gardens. I remember it being the most intense invert I'd ridden. I can't imagine it as forceless, but maybe it's changed a bit over time.

      Thanks for reading!

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  9. well, when i went on, i was 7. i was about 1 centimeter short of getting me on the ride. so, even we both knew how dangerous it could be, my dad snuck me on. it was the best invert ever! i loved it so much, but we kinda got in trouble. not from the park people, but my mom. it was kind of intense, but otherwise perfect. they did not just plop it down on a parking lot like the dominator at kings dominion, but they actually did some nice landscaping with some snow on the ground. i wouldnt give it a ten but a 9. I hope that they will keep this one up for a while.

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  10. When i was going to this coaster for the first time, i was so surprised. I saw some of the best themeing on a roller coaster that ive ever seen. It had snow everywhere around the coaster. It also had skis on the cars. Well when i looked at this, i was expecting the ride to be great, and it didnt disappoint me. Entering the train the restraints werent uncomfortable. Its amaziing going up the life hill relizing how high up your really going. So you get to the top and you plunge 170 ft. to the ground at speeds of 67 mph. I really was amazed how fast we were really going. The inversions were very thrilling. They were pretty smooth with some g forces. The only thing that let me down were the zero g rolls. They were very rough. That really smooth ride had to have a bad ending. Well overall that is one of the best inverted coasters on the planet. Good job Busch Gardens!

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  11. Shame on me! I refused to do this ride AND Apollo's chariot beacause I FEARED THEM! Double-shame on me!

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  12. I have to admit Etienne, Apollos Chariot was pretty scary, but Alpengeist is not bad at all. Trust me its much better than it looks haha

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  13. if you are scared of heights, ride griffon. heh heh

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  14. i love roller coasters the fasters the better.

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  15. I have to agree whith you on that, I`m all for speed.

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  16. well, i dont know if this is the norm for it, but when i went in the summer a few years ago, Nessie had a 2 and a half hour wait, Apollo had a 5 minute wait, and Alppy had no wait…

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  17. I've got to say I don't agree with your review. Alpengeist has a great layout, terrain and looks visually impressive. However, I felt that the Vertical Loop was a little forceless and the second section was a little dull, even riding at the back. I think you were a little generous with the 10, as even though Alpengeist is one of the best inverts, it is not the king.

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  18. I agree. This is my favorite ride out of anywhere I've been! (but inverted coasters are my favorite anyways) I know for a fact that it has lost a little bit of the smoothness the past 5-8 years but it still is worthy of the 10 rating 🙂

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  19. Come on, Alpengeist isn't that good! There are so many better inverts out there.

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  20. Out of all the inverts i've ridden (Nemesis, B:TR, Montu, Pyrenees, Black Mamba, Silver Bullet, Talon, Patriot and Nemesis Inferno) This ranks pretty near the top. I wouldn't say it's the best invert i've ridden, but I'd say it comes a close second to Montu and Nemesis.

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