For this edition of What If…
Imagine getting to call the shots, rather than just playing armchair theme park GM like we usually do. You’ve just won a contest where you get to choose the type of ride that your home park builds next.
Here’s what I would do:
Carowinds Could Use a Launch Coaster
Back in 2009, when there was buzz about Carowinds’ new roller coaster, fans speculated about a regional tie-in for the ride to make it unique. The park teased that the new ride would be racing-themed; which made a lot of sense given that NASCAR originated in the area.
I was hoping that the roller coaster would have a launched start. It’s the roller coaster experience that’d best simulate a race car (see Top Thrill Dragster) and the park didn’t have one. While I’m very happy with the ride we got (Intimidator review), I still feel like a launch coaster would round out the park’s lineup.
Currently, Carowinds has 13 roller coasters. Here are the types: wooden, hyper, giga, inverted, flying, stand-up looper, mine train, boomerang, sitdown-looper, wild mouse, junior inverted, junior woodie, kiddie steel
As far as the layout, I wouldn’t make it a looper. Carowinds already has 20 total inversions, 5th most of any park in the World! I’d just give it long flat launch that people could watch, like they can on Cedar Point’s Dragster and then have some hills, turns, and tunnel or two. Basically a ride like Knott’s Berry Farms’ Xcelerator, but with a longer and more interesting layout.
Non-Coaster Ride: How About Some H20?
If I could bring any non-coaster ride to Carowinds, it’d be something that incorporated water. The expanded water park is great, but on the theme park side there’s a serious gap in water attractions. The park’s log flume and suspended coaster with water elements have been removed for quite some time. More recently, the park removed their shoot-the-chute water ride, Whitewater Falls.
For me, the clear choice for a non-coaster would be a water battle ride like Six Flags Great America’s Buccaneer Battle (pictured above) or Dollywood’s River Battle. Guests on and off the ride would appreciate a way to cool off, especially during our hot Carolina summer days.
Some Other Takes on Carowinds’ Next Ride
If you’re interested in Carowinds, and you’ve got some time, dive in and wade through the Carowinds 2018 Prediction thread on Carowinds Connection or check out Screamscape’s Carowinds page. Seems like turning stand-up coaster Vortex into a floorless coaster is the leading rumor for 2018.
Also, Josh of Coaster Corner recently speculated about what Carowinds should build in the area left by Whitewater Falls. Check it out here: Josh on Carowinds’ Next Coaster
What’s Your Take? What Would You Add to Your Park?
That’s what I would do. What would one roller coaster or ride would you add to your home park? Let us know by leaving a comment below.