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 Review of Thunderhead @ Dollywood
4 Rating Posted by: benleibo on 8/19/2005 6:16:00 PM
When Thunderhead opened to rave reviews, I was little bit shocked. After all, its only 100 feet tall and Dollywood isnt really known for awesome thrill rides. I also was surprised by the claims of awesome airtime because when looking at the photos the ride doesnt have too many straight hills. I was definitely a doubter, but one ride in the front seat of Thunderhead was enough to convince me that this coaster is something special. Ive never ridden a wooden coaster anything like this one. Ive been on some good ones (Boulder Dash, Legend, Ghostrider, etc.) but none of them combine speed, pacing, airtime, laterals, comfort, and all-out fun the way Thunderhead does. Approaching the station all you see is a massive wooden support structure nestled between two wooded hillsides. Views of the lift hill are obstructed by the sprawling structure. Theming is simple but good, and the ride ops in the station are all characters. While waiting in line for the ride, its easy to get startled by the roar of the train making its fly-by through the station. Really is loud and gets your adrenaline going. Then you get into the car and hear "Let the Thunder Roll!" From that point on its pure excitement. First drop is good but not the best - just a little something to get the train going. Good positive Gs at the bottom and coming into the first turn. On Thunderhead there is airtime on every single hill! Rising, turning, dropping, flying out of your seat all at the same time. The ride just does not stop. Every single second you are either floating out of the train or being slammed down into it. The trains are comfortable and the ride is incredibly smooth for a wooden coaster. Its such a letdown when the train hits the breaks. Such a fun ride. The front seat is the best in my opinion. Lines are not long at all on weekdays; I walked on to the front seat in the afternoon. I must admit that I didnt expect Thunderhead to live up to the hype. But now that Ive ridden it, Thunderhead has become my favorite wooden coasters and is a ride that everyone should have the chance to enjoy. Perfect all around.

Review Comments

BobFunland on 8/19/2005 6:31:56 PM said:
Wow.. Ben has been getting around well this summer, and had some great woodies to experience. Good review :thumbsup: I agree on the front seat opinion. Though it is rare to say a woodie is best in the front, this is truly an exception, and the lack of a line is great too.
coasterSS on 8/19/2005 9:04:52 PM said:
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