I've never been on Lightning Racer, but I have been on Raven, Legend, Shivering Timbers, Cornball, Phoenix, Beast etc and I like Thunderhead the best. It is amazing. Also, another surprise this year is Avalanche which is also top 5 for me.
I personally preferred the Ozark Wildcat and it's forces a little more than Thunderhead but Thunderhead still has a lot (like the fly-through and extreme banking) going for it. I'm going back in September and again later in the fall (for night rides, which it seems really elevates it's awesomeness) so who knows, it may jump back on top for me. *** Edited 7/25/2004 3:16:53 AM UTC by Pale Rider***
Thunderhead would probably be my favorite wooden coaster if it had trees and woods intertwined with the layout. It's a shame the location has been stripped of all the trees. As it stands, TH is amazing but could've been so much better if the ride's twists, turns, and drops were hidden amongst trees ala Raven and Legend.
Also, the front half of Thunderhead was built on the site of a warehouse, so the area was already pretty open to start with. I'm sure they'll cover the back area with trees during the 2005 winter off season.
Wow, to say that Thunderhead ranks up there with the Legend, Shivering Timbers, Lightning Racer and the Beast is a bold statement. It is nice to hear Herschend Family Entertainment has found their crown jewel, and that Tennessee now has something to brag about. It is just what Dollywood needs to establish itself as a thrill-park destination. Sounds like GCI put some extra work into this one, or maybe this is signs of things to come? Those are some nice aerial shots Coaster Gallery! Wish I had a helicopter.
Actually, HFE wants to do the opposite of establishing any of it's parks as a thrill-park destination. It's not their thing, they will add thrill rides, but they want to be known as 'Entertainment' Parks.
This is partly the reason we don't have more coasters than we do, a new one will come in a few years.
2005: S&S/ Intamin Tower
2006: New Area And/or Ride Complex
2007: Maybe a flat, possibly nothing.
2008: Can You say Beeemer?
Can't wait til then. HFE demands quality coasters, such can be seen from Tenn Tornado and Thunderhead at Dollywood. Their B&M Coaster will probably be one of the best when it opens.
Come and See us at Dollywood! 'Your Smoky Mountain Family Adventure!"
I don't know about the GPS thing CoastermanX. I know GCII got topography maps of the entire area. Dollwood found a place where they wanted to put the ride and and went from there. After looking at that area GCII found the valley near where Dollywood originally wanted the ride. Since the new area had more potential for a wooden coaster the rest is history.
All the trees were removed for construction purposes. Trees would get in the way of construction. Sure you can leave them but it would make setting the bents and other things alot more difficult.