Early Reviews of Skyrush at Hersheypark

Roller Coaster Reviews

Skyrush Roller Coaster - Hersheypark 2012Another weekend is here, and in a year packed with new roller coasters, that means another set of exciting new rides are open. This time, Hersheypark fans were treated to their first rides on Skyrush. The park’s new winged-seat, hyper coaster is generating some very positive reviews. As good hyper coasters do, Skyrush appears to be delivering quite a bit of airtime.

Here’s a sample of some of the early reviews of Skyrush at Hersheypark:

The twisty over the water was great, and it essentially throws your body up out and off to the side, offering some really unique airtime. The final, albeit tiny, airtime hill offers the most intense and high-flying airtime I have ever experienced, and it really felt like I was being thrown into the trees or Comet in the distance. – griffonj2022 on Theme Park Review

….SkyRush had the most intense airtime out of any coaster that I’ve been on. I’d definitely rank SkyRush up there with my all time favorite coasters: I305, Nemesis, Tobu Zoo’s mega-lite, and El Toro.- Swimace on Theme Park Review

Skyrush Is In Good Company

Skyrush at Hersheypark As several have said, Skyrush is joining some ‘really good company’; meaning fans are placing it among their top rides. Swimace’s mention of Tobu Zoo’s mega-lite is music to my ears. I’ve been hoping for a mega-lite here in the States for years as the globe-trotting coaster enthusiasts have ranked them very highly in their top ten lists. It’s exciting to hear that from at least one enthusiast’s view, Skyrush is comparable.

The twisty mentioned above is a reference to Intimidator 305’s direction-changing banks that throw you like a rag doll from side-to-side. It’s cool to see Intamin use this new element again and give riders a kind of wild lateral airtime.

Skyrush’s Trains & Ride Experience

Fitting the ride’s name, Skyrush’s trains seem to shoot up the lift hill. Another poster mentioned that Skyrush could be alternating between a faster lift and slower lift at times. Here’s a video showing a train rocketing (for a lift hill at least) up and out of the station.

No one should be surprised that the waits were long, but several riders mentioned that loading was subpar. Hopefully the park can work out any kinks and improve ride ops. Also, the winged seats seem to be getting somewhat mixed reviews. The restraints have been called ‘uncomfortable’, and a few riders mentioned that outer seats don’t really make much of a difference.

Regardless, where it matters, it sounds like Skyrush really delivers. I’m curious as to where I’d rank it and possibly place it, if it’s as good as it sounds. A hyper coaster with a terrain-ish layout, cool banked turns next to a creek, and strong airtime throughout? It sounds like a potential top ten coaster to me.

Here’s a POV video of Skyrush at Hersheypark:

Note – This video was filmed by the park. For safety reasons, please DO NOT take a camera on a roller coaster.

Have you ridden Skyrush? What did you think? Leave a comment below and use this poll to rate it.Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

Comments are now closed on this post. Continue the discussion here: Guest Review of Skyrush at Hersheypark 

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


  1. I was skeptical about this ride at first, but now when I see the on and off ride POVs I have become a fan. Intimidator 305 is my favorite roller coaster of all time that I've been on to date and since this ride has similar quick/rapid/intense transitions like I305 Im sure I would absolutely love this ride 🙂 🙂 I can tell this ride could probably be one of my top 10 favorite rides. I do however still think Shambhala will be a tad bit better. But thats just my opinion

  2. Riding it tomorrow!

  3. Rode the skyrush today. It's a good coaster, but it's somewhat ruined by the terrible, thigh-pain brutality of the restraints. People keep talking about airtime, but I can't enjoy airtime when it's thigh-crushing time. I rode once in the back, once in the front. MUCH better in the back. For actual air instead of thigh-crushing. Neat ride but would have been better with intimidator 305-style restraints.

  4. Went to Hershey Park Memorial Day to ride Sky Rush. When you sit in the seat a harness restraint comes over your head and rests firmly on your thighs. Your arms are free which is a good experience. I immediately noticed how tight the restraint was on my legs. It only got worse as the attendant pushed down on the harness. Each air time hill was like someone pushing a hard bar against your thighs. By the end of the ride my thighs were so sore. As we pulled into the station we sat for about two minutes as the coaster on deck was loading. My thighs were throbbing in pain. When I got off the ride I had very large deep indentions into my thighs and they were very red. It took 8 hours for the marks to begin to fade. Today my thighs are very sore to touch and feel bruised. I can't remember much about the ride. A good thing is that it climbs the hill very quickly making it less time you are experiencing pain. I am very skeptical to ride Sky Rush again. It really is not worth the pain I encountered. I think a good name for the coaster would be THIGH CRUSH.

  5. I was disappointed. It's got so much potential and everyone keeps saying it's so awesome. Even my brother loved it. But we both agree the seat restraints are too painful. Thigh Crush it should be called. Two days later and I still feel the pain. I even have bruises. Now I know a little pain is worth the rush to hardcore enthusiasts, but this is too much. I also blacked out the first time I rode. I've heard stories of other riders "greying out" or seeing stars. And the station is a mess! You board and unboard on the same side! How stupid! Takes forever!

    • That stinks. I was wondering if people were going to experience black outs. There were numerous comparisons to Intimidator 305 on Theme Park Review and that ride had a history of intensity and black outs, grey outs, starts, etc. I guess we get what we ask for when it comes to tall, intense, rides.

      • Take the restraint issue with a grain of salt. It could have OSTRs and there would be complaints there too.

        Much ado about nothing.

        • Unless you rode Sky Rush you really don't know anything about the pain people experience. You will need salt to put in your bath to sooth your aching thighs.

          • I have ridden it, and even suggesting that it causes any sort of injury is ridiculous.

            This is a good ride, even a great one, and griping like this does none of us a service when it comes to companies designing extreme thrill rides. I would hate to see American parks shying away from building crazy new coasters because of some perception that we can't handle them.

  6. I immediately want to ride this thing now.

  7. Thigh Crush is real. Very real. I rode twice and I was in pain for few hours and still sore the next day. Intamin should be very ashamed for designing the lap bar that badly. Diamondback absolutely rules with their Cadillac restraints.

  8. No joke about the thigh pain. I am a 24 year old very fit person so don't think of an overweight person with giants thighs as the cause of this. Myself along with my two younger brothers were all in absolute shock and pain as we waited for minutes in the loading area once the ride was over. Every time the coaster goes "up and immediately down" (or as the people here call it, "airtime") you get an absolute crushing pain in your legs. I already emailed Hershey about this and I know I won't be the only one. Literally every person walking off the ride was grabbing their legs. Do not recommend with the harnesses (but putting in an alternative would make it 100% better because it's such a cool ride with the speeds and quick jerks).

    • Wow! Sounds like the thigh pain is really an issue. Odd that I didn't recall seeing a mention of thigh pain on TPR when I gathered a few initial reviews. I'll check again and see what the latest scuttlebutt is.

      I'd imagine that Hersheypark is already aware of rider feedback if it's as bad as quite a few of you are saying. I wonder what they can do at this point. They're new trains and I'd have to think that it could take a while for them to develop a different type of restraints.

  9. I rode Skyrush on Tuesday. It was excellent and flawed. I'm not one to complain about restraints but this one's resembles a vise, pinching the people to make sure they don't become airborne from their ejector seats.

    I'd vote to use the I-305 restraints and straps instead, but it's probably too late for that.

    305 is more fun for me. I rode it in the fall of 2010 (with the trims and the straps) and it's still my number one coaster. I haven't been on El Toro or Bizarro (Six Flags New England) but I have been on Voyage. I can hold my hands up on 305 for the whole course but not on Skyrush.

    Perhaps some gel cell type material on the underside of the lap bar might make it more compatible, but maybe this is not feasible.

    At the bottom of the first drop any tiny gap between the lap bar and your legs is instantly closed – hard. 5 G's, supposedly. At the end of the ride the worst part is waiting in the sun in the brake run for the other train to dispatch. The same side load / unload does not work, especially with most of the riders trying to figure out how to retrieve their stuff from the lazy susan style bins. Since the crew can't open the gates to let new riders on until the very last person has exited the dispatch rate isn't very good. Sitting on the brake run with the lap bar pinching your blood flow is unlikely to convert many customers into repeat riders.

    I'm also a bit surprised that Hershey spent so much money on this ride and then didn't spend anything on shades for the hour long queue. A small part of the queue has shade from a large tree but most is in full sunlight. High powered fans with misters are nice but don't prevent sunburn. On Tuesday I lost count of the number of people I saw with deep sunburn. Having Northern European ancestry and a small case of basal cell carcinoma sensitizes me to this.

    It would also be nice for Hershey to use pavers instead of asphalt for its paths. Tuesday was very hot and parts of the park smelled from the offgassing of the fresh asphalt. Perhaps they could buy some white paint for the roof of the Comet station to reduce the heat trapping abilities.

    The three very tiny trims that were installed on the track are on support bars that are several times longer than the trims. It won't surprise me if Hershey installs longer trims for the ride (something I don't want to see). I would hope they rethink the station and see if there's a way to redesign it in the offseason. A few signs urging people to exit quickly and that the station isn't like any other coaster station in the park might help speed the cycle, something that could be a big issue this summer when the full crowds are there.

  10. Joel, the picture was a joke-in case that wasnt clear. Robb at TPR got so tired of people griping about this non issue that he set the forums to autocorrect "restraint" to "noodle."

  11. I rode Skyrush yesterday with my teenage daughters. We rode it twice in different seats each time hoping to vary the experience. We though the ride was exciting, but were still disappointed overall.

    Likes: The initial ride up the first incline was great. It isn’t like being shot with a catapult, but it is fast and uphill. The drops and airtime hills were great.

    Dislikes: I totally agree that the restraints were horrendous. They did their job by keeping you in the seat during the airtime and twists, but they are very tight and uncomfortable. I also didn’t like the body jarring twists when I felt like I was going to be thrown from my seat (again, the restraints had to be tight to do their job). A little off topic concerning the ride itself, but the lines and the station seemed to be poorly designed. You enter and exit on the same side of the train, the path between the train and the gate is extremely narrow, the storage bins for riders are a mess and the lines didn’t seem to be long enough for days when the park is at or near full capacity. I am a season pass holder at Hershey Park, so I will find out later in the year how long the lines get and how long it takes people/staff to turn around the trains…

    I'm a self-proclaimed roller coaster enthusiast. My preference is to ride new, smooth modern rides. I'm done with the days of accepting rides that throw you around and bang your head on the seats and restraints. I want to feel like I’m flying in an airplane. SMOOTH…Rolling hills, steep drops, banking, inverting, barrel rolls, loops… Skyrush offered some of these, but I could have done without being thrown around during twists and the tight restraints. Don’t let my words keep you from giving it a try.

    • Matt, I agree with you. Alot of the parks are now trying to hold records. They want the biggest, longest, fastest roller coaster. But what good is it, if it provides pain to the riders. I like going on coasters that provide some unique elements and are simply fun. And when you get off of it, your body does not feel banged up. If you are seeking a coaster which has inversions, barrel rolls and steep drops, yet gives you a smooth ride, I would recomend you try Sky Rocket at Kennywood Park. I can tell you that it is vey re-rideable. It probably won't get as much recognition as these bigger coasters but I was pleasantly surprised.

  12. Skyrush is an awesome roller coaster, it really is. However, I could not enjoy the airtime that I would typically be loving because I was writhing in pain the entire time. The lap bar is awful. Absolutely awful. It was sad actually. I couldn't enjoy the ride at all. In fact, I couldn't wait to get off of that ride and relieve my poor little thighs. If the ride had restraints like Storm Runner's/Fahrenheit's, or even just a lap bar like Nitro's at Six Flags Great Adventure (which is similar but didn't bother me at all), there wouldn't be a problem.. I'm not exaggerating or being dramatic. It really put a damper on an otherwise excellent ride. It's unlikely that I'll ride Skyrush again unless they decide to redesign the lap bar…which is also pretty unlikely…

  13. I'm just saying what I experienced was bad, and it seems like it was a problem for others as well. I'm sure it won't stop people from riding, and it shouldn't. I don't want to stop anyone from giving Skyrush a try. All I'm saying is that the pain IS real and it's not worth riding again for me personally. I'm a coaster junkie and can handle a good bit of roughness from a thrilling ride, but this was just too much for me. I am glad though to see that there are some people that loved their experience and didn't seem to have a problem. I mean, the ride deserves some repeat riders. It's got great features..

  14. Another comment: I have no idea if this is technically possible, but if there was a ratchet mechanism in the restraints that kept them from squeezing you further the lapbars would be more pleasant. Some of my rides were wonderful, others were painful. On the bright side, they ensure that no one is likely to wind up in the creek.

    Stand up coasters have a reputation for being harsh on "boy parts" but that part of my anatomy got more crushed by Skyrush than any standup (and I've been on 5 of the 7 B&M standups).

    Skyrush is definitely a "defensive" riding ride.

  15. How anyone can vote "demolish" or even "bad" for this ride I'll never know. It's clearly deserving of at least an 8, and likely a 10.

  16. Just rode thigh crush today and would NEVER ride it again until they change those horrible lap bars. Everyone around me was screaming in pain- not from fear! I also blacked out for 4 seconds, which has never happened to me before. I feel it was from the intense pain I was in. I love roller coasters, have been on many and I have no fear on rides. It has been 7 hours since I was on this torture device and my thighs still burn. In my opinion, it is not worth the 3 hours you will stand in line.

  17. We just went today. This coaster is terrible and we LOVE coasters. If it had different restraints, it would be AMAZING. However, we personally watched 2 people get wheeled away with EMS within a 30 minute period and now I have perfect lap-bar bruises across my legs already, within hours. The combination of no shoulder restraint and over-zealous employees is yielding injuries galore. And to the Aric saying that it is ridiculous that it is even being suggested that there are injuries… there are. Don't be stupid. Like I said, we personally watched it happen. We even came back later in the day and EMS was still there. If EMS has to hang out by the ride, there is a problem.

    • Since there has not been an uproar over these "injuries," I find it far more easy to believe that EMS was there for a pre-existing medical condition, and not because the coaster hurt someone.

      Since it's still open, I'm going to continue believing it is perfectly safe for a healthy person to ride.

  18. When I was there last week I saw a few people (not at Skyrush) attended to by EMS, although it was hot and I suspect (don't know) that there was heat exhaustion. Fresh asphalt makes the heat worse.

    I did see many people get off Skyrush in a state of shock since they were not expecting the intensity, although the towering lift hill should be a clue that this isn't like the other coasters at Hershey. It was surreal that there was almost a negative-G moment at the very top of the lift due to the high speed of the cable. I didn't experience that on I-305.

    Total rides on Skyrush: 7. One in very back. Once in front. I didn't find the wing seats made a difference on the ride except that they shook more than the middle seats while going around the turns.

    • From what info I've been able to find, there has been at least one incident of a young lady who did not actually ride suffering from the heat, and that's why the EMS call was made. I was also told that the EMS team was in the park for less than five minutes.

      People getting hurt on Skyrush seems to be less of a risk than some would say…

  19. Well Skyrush has been my most anticipated coaster of this year and today I finally got to ride it. I've been reading the blogs and facebook posts since this ride opened and was surprised to see the I305ish controversy going on with this coaster. First let me say I love this site. This isn't a site where people name call, disrespect and treat others like they are invalid because their opinion is different. I have a lot of respect for the Critic in this regard.

    So I got three rides today and all of them were on winged seats. I got into the park at 11:30 and queue was full so I came back around 2p and it was probably a 15 minute wait from then on. For reference some of my favorite rides are El Toro, I305, Intimidator, Apollo's Chariot and Maverick. Now I have to say I was very disappointed with this ride. It is a hard ride to review because you have the layout and ride itself but then you absolutely have to take the ride's restraint into account because it effects the way you feel while riding. A little discomfort is part of riding coasters that is why everyone loves the comfort of the B&M hypers. Intamin OTSR and lapbars as well as B&M restraints tighten during rides and are known to staple riders in. In general there is just a tightness when this occurs but not really much pain or very little where it doesn't ruin a ride. In the case of Skyrush the restraint is in a position where it is angled against your upper thighs. As many have stated already during the first drop, any other drop and the s curves the restraint stabs your legs. IF there is such a thing as unenjoyable airtime this is it.

    Now this is why I say it is a hard ride to review. This coaster has all the makings of being an incredible ride but the whole reason we ride coasters is for the fun of it. The pain of the restraint is best described as being given 5 or 6 hard charlie horses all in a row and the end result is you are too busy being in pain instead of enjoying the ride. I can say this is without a doubt the most painful coaster I've been on. After the ride was over the people in my row and the rows in front and behind were all saying the same things: "ouch my legs hurt, do your legs hurt?" and "I'm not riding this again it hurts my legs."

    So other than the restraint issue this is a very intense coaster and does have some good airtime. Truth be told I was underwhelmed with the airtime after hearing claims of "feeling like you were being thrown out the coaster" that people have stated. Maybe it was because I was so tight that I just didn't experience that feeling. I do think this is an issue and there is nothing bad about people bringing an issue of discomfort to the park or the manufacterer. If there is a flawed design the best thing that could happen is to improve that design to make for an overall better experience. When people visit an amusement park they have to pay so they are customers and they have every right to let their opinions be known about thinks they dislike. I also don't understand coaster groups or people on blogs that are just plain mean and bullies if someone has a different opinion then them. If the restraints don't bother you then that is great. But if the majority of riders are having issues then this is a real problem and hopefully just like the I305 situation Intamin and Hersheypark will work to resolve this for the public.

    • Excellent review Mike. Thanks for being so descriptive about the restraints and the associated pain. They've got to do something. I'd have to think that Hersheypark is already working on a contingency plan with Intamin. Again, great review!

      • Thanks CC. I have to imagine you are correct in that they will work on the issue. I mean this is a new train and restraint system as far as I know for Intamin so having bugs is par for the course especially when Intamin is pushing the limits like they do. I don't even know what human testing they could've done before opening the coaster or if they have some formula to know how the ride could effect riders. If they do correct the problem this can be a "10" kind of ride.

    • First of all I must agree with you Mike, this is the best website on the internet for roller coaster reviews. Whenever I'm about to take a trip to a new park,this is the first place I go to check out what should be my priorities at the park. So, thank you CC for making such a trustworthy site that is also very enjoyable to read.

      Secondly, I'm quite surprised to hear about the painful restraints. I take your word for it, but, I find it shocking because Intamin has a pretty good reputation for comfortable seating. But anyway, my only complaint from watching the video, is the lift hill only lasts about 10 seconds. I personally enjoy a longer lift hill because it builds tension. But overall, regardless of pain, it looks like a pretty solid ride.

      • Well I just wanted to add a few more words on this topic. I have to say that I'm no where near as well seasoned as a lot of other enthusiasts out there. I've only been on a total of 103 coasters. I will say that I absolutely love Intamin and they make some of my favorite coasters. In fact I think Intimidator 305 is the greatest coaster ever built (although I don't think it is the best nor my favorite). The only other Intamin I experienced this on to a much lesser degree was Maverick. After the first launch and drop Maverick's OTSR got much tighter on my legs and was a little painful but nothing I couldn't deal with. This was my 3rd trip to Hershey since 2008 and my main reason for going was for Skyrush. Now I had two rides on the left winged seat and one on the right side. I have read elsewhere that the left winged seat seems to be a much more intense and wild experience. I've also read that the middle seats might offer a more comfortable ride. Well my main point of this post is that I went to ride Skyrush and after only 3 rides (the line wasn't long and I could've rode a lot more) I just didn't want to take the pain anymore. Out of those 103 coasters which includes all kinds (including Intamin) this was by far the most painful. Believe me when I say I don't judge anybody else and I believe them if they say the restraints didn't bother them. I also forgot to mention that I did start to greyout after the drop but it was very slight; almost like I was starting too greyout but immediately came out of it so it is nowhere near like the greyout of Intimidator 305. I also had this feeling on Stormrunner so it could just be I was affected by the rides in this manner for whatever reason.

  20. Great review Mike.That is exactly how I feel. I was on it yesterday with a friend and his two children and we all agreed that it was too painful to enjoy. As you are getting thrown into the painful restrains all you can do is wonder how incredible the ride would be if not for them. It has so much airtime that can't be enjoyed. I felt like I was going to be ripped in half at some points because my body had no play. They really need to address this because the ride has so much potential. Hopefully the park fixes this. And don't get me started on the station. Who designed that? Everyone is running into each other trying to get around doing their own thing. This really slows down the dispatches and makes for constant stacking of the trains. It was not well thought out.

    • Yeah the loading and unloading is very awkward. It seems like a simple solution to the limited space issue but there is no explanation on how it works and it can be confusing. I know the first time I got off I went to the bin that was beside where I got off except my stuff was in the next bin up due to how the station is set up. I think since the ride is so fast due to the cable lift and course that just like I305 the trains will stack no matter what. It does slow the process down a bit though probably.

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