Dollywood marked another construction milestone on its $20 million Wild Eagle wing coaster as installation of the 3,127-foot track was completed last week.
Wild Eagle is the first of its kind in the U.S. and set to open March 24, 2012. The new coaster’s innovative floorless design positions riders on the “wings” along either side of the coaster’s track with nothing but air above and below, allowing passenger to experience the freedom of flight.
In anticipation of the opening of Wild Eagle, the most awaited new roller coaster in the U.S. in 2012, today Dollywood premiered custom animation at Dollywood2012.com which allows fans to take their first virtual ride. The virtual ride takes passengers soaring through the Smoky Mountains from Wild Eagle’s stunning roost 21 stories above the park’s Wilderness Pass area.
Using the latest video animation, riders journey along Wild Eagle’s massive track and maneuver the coaster’s four inversions including a giant loop, a “zero-G” roll, and a giant flat spin. Wild Eagle’s nearly two-and-a-half minute ride includes a plummeting 135-foot first drop.
Next in the construction process is the arrival from Europe of the custom handmade passenger trains. Designed to carry 28 riders each, the Wild Eagle trains feature an imposing bald eagle with piercing eyes and broad wings outstretched for flight.
Wild Eagle is the largest single capital investment in Dollywood’s 26-year history. The park’s development team is collaborating with Switzerland-based Bolliger & Mabillard (B&M), the world’s premier coaster manufacturer. Pioneers in ride technology, B&M has built 11 of the 20 highest-ranking steel coasters in the world, according to Amusement Today magazine.
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