Are you a thrill-seeker? If so, then it’s likely that you can’t resist a good roller coaster. Those who truly love daring feats will love this list, which includes the biggest, fastest and most exciting roller coasters in the United States. Add these coasters to your bucket list of rides to try.
1. Gatekeeper – Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio
When it debuted in May 2013, Gatekeeper earned the title of “tallest roller coaster inversion” in the world. This breathtaking steel coaster has an inversion at 170 feet, giving riders the thrill of a lifetime. In addition, Gatekeeper also boasts the longest track at 4,163 feet and the highest drop of 164 feet. Riders love the wing style of cars, which places passengers on either side of the track rather than above or below it.
2. Outlaw Run – Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri
This ride, which debuted in 2013, has quickly become the talk of the roller coaster community. It does something that no other wooden roller coaster has ever accomplished: a 720-degree double barrel roll and three inversions. Over 450,000 board feet of lumber went into this massive coaster, which also happens to feature one of the steepest drops – riders plummet 16 stories at 81 degrees, which is practically vertical and the steepest on any wooden coaster. It’s also the second-fastest wooden coaster in the world.
3. Top Thrill Dragster – Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio
Another Cedar Point entry on the list, Top Thrill Dragster is a steel roller coaster that’s regularly ranked among the best in the world. This ride broke four world records when it opened in 2003: fastest coaster, tallest coaster, tallest drop and tallest complete circuit roller coaster. While it now holds number two or three spots in most of those categories, it still tops the charts among roller coaster enthusiasts. This thrilling ride takes you 420 feet in the air and gets up to amazing speeds of 120 mph. If you can believe it, you also plummet 400 feet from the top point, which is nearly the entire height of the coaster itself.
4. Batman: The Ride – Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, Illinois
Though Batman: The Ride doesn’t top any coaster ranking lists for speed or height, it’s still one of the most thrilling rides in the country. First opened in 1992, over 28 million people have experienced this amazing ride. The roller coaster features cars that hang from the tracks, leaving riders feeling like they’re dangling by a thread and making hairpin turns, the zero-G roll and vertical loops even more exhilarating. In 2013, Six Flags upped the ante by having this iconic ride run backwards. This is a must for anyone who loves a coaster that keeps them guessing throughout the ride.
5. Bizarro – Six Flags New England in Agawam, Massachusetts
This roller coaster opened in 2000 with the Superman nemesis theme. This is a long coaster with plenty of fun elements packed in the course of its ride, including a 120-degree overbanked turn, sudden drops, a helix turn and a fogged tunnel. Bizarro has been ranked as the number-one or number-two best steel coaster in the country for over ten years running thanks to its thrilling design.
6. Millennium Force – Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio
If you’ve learned one thing from this list, it’s that a trip to Cedar Point is a must for coaster junkies. Millennium Force is another hit at this popular amusement park. When it opened in 2000, it broke or helped to break ten world records. Despite many of those records being broken since then, it has never been ranked lower than second on the best steel roller coasters list. This unbelievable ride includes tunnels, overbanked turns and a top speed of nearly 100 mph. It continues to be among the tallest and fastest in the world, and actually influenced many designers to start using the cable lift system (it was the first to do so) rather than the chain lift system.
Each of these rides has different elements of design that you may have never experienced before. Consider visiting some of these theme parks to give these record-breaking and thrill-inducing roller coasters a try.