It’s all in the anticipation.
With the sight of twisted tracks rising high in the sky and the sounds of screaming passengers piercing the midway, roller coasters start playing mind games before park visitors even board them. Then, as riders slowly climb the initial lift hill, thoughts of “What have I gotten myself into?” race through their minds, their pulses quicken and adrenaline starts to pump.
Dive coasters, such as the new Yukon Striker at Canada’s Wonderland in Vaughan, Ontario (near Toronto), take the element of anticipation to an absurd extreme. Instead of immediately freefalling after reaching the top of the lift hill, their trains extend just over the edge of the first drop and come to a complete stop. Suspended for what seems like forever (but is really only a few seconds), passengers are left to hyperventilate and ponder over the madness that’s about to take their breath away altogether.
So there I was, wide-eyed with anticipation, staring down 245 feet into the abyss of the world’s tallest dive coaster and wondering what the heck I had gotten myself into. The over-the-shoulder restraint stoked my anticipation even more. The newly designed vest-like device offers a little give in the upper chest area. Suspended some 22 stories in the air and facing the ground on the 90-degree drop, my torso began inching away from the back of the seat. Yikes!
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