Mystery Mine

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Mystery Mine
Mystery Mine (Dollywood) 01.JPG
Entrance to Mystery Mine
Dollywood
Park section Timber Canyon
Coordinates 35°47′44″N 83°31′48″W / 35.795583°N 83.530059°W / 35.795583; -83.530059Coordinates: 35°47′44″N 83°31′48″W / 35.795583°N 83.530059°W / 35.795583; -83.530059
Status Operating
Soft opening date March 31, 2007 (2007-03-31)
Opening date April 13, 2007 (7 years ago) (2007-04-13)
Cost $17,500,000 USD
($19.9 million in 2014 dollars[1])
General statistics
Type Steel – Euro-Fighter
Manufacturer Gerstlauer
Designer Werner Stengel
Model Euro-Fighter (Custom)
Track layout Terrain
Lift/launch system Chain lift hill
Drop 85 ft (26 m)
Length 1,811 ft (552 m)
Speed 48 mph (77 km/h)
Inversions 2
Duration 2:30
Max vertical angle 95°
Capacity 1000 riders per hour
G-force 4.5
Height restriction 48 in (122 cm)
Virtual queue
Q2Q available
Must transfer from wheelchair
Mystery Mine at RCDB
Pictures of Mystery Mine at RCDB

Mystery Mine is a Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter roller coaster at Dollywood, a theme park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. The ride is heavily themed as a haunted mining operation from the 19th century, with sections taking place outdoors and within a large building that features special effects. At a cost of $17.5 million to construct, Mystery Mine was Dollywood's largest single-attraction investment. It was the first Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter installation in the United States, and, at the time of its opening, had the steepest drop of any coaster in North America, until Steel Hawg at Indiana Beach was built in 2008. The ride was installed by Ride Entertainment Group, who handles all of Gerstlauer's operations in the Western Hemisphere.[2][3]

Ride Through[edit]

The ride's story and themes are introduced in the queue as the guests enter. As the visitors pass old newspaper articles and signs condemning the old abandoned mine shaft, the queue winds around a rocky area before climbing two flights of stairs to arrive in the boarding area. In the queue, you might hear a quote to remember, "If the canary ain't tweetin'...you'll be sleepin'!" Once guests arrive inside, they walk through a short twisted queue themed with quick paced banjo music and a good spirited miner singing tunes about the mine's sketchy reputation for strange occurrences.

Guests board the small train cars and are quickly launched out of the station. The Miner's evil laugh echoes down the first small drop as the car rushes towards the first curve. A wall full of humming ravens watches the car as it passes. A canary sits healthily in a cage nearby. The car turns the corner only to be face to face with a giant spinning rock crusher. The cart quickly drops beneath the grinder and whips around a hairpin curve. The riders slow to a stop, and a small lever labeled MINE GAS cranks into the "on" position.

A vertical wall of track lies before the car, and a chain lift kicks into gear. The cart is pulled 90 degrees straight up the track. Graffiti litters the sheet metaled walls on either side. The cart reaches the top and drops down a short hill outside the ride building. A sign advertises "Burnt out bridge ahead!" and the cart precariously swerves across the trestle. An 85-degree drop then sends the vehicle careening up a Horseshoe, essentially a vertical U-turn.

The cart swings around a few small helices right before plunging back into the abandoned mine building. The cart slows in the pitch black recess of the mine. A spotlight is turned on illuminating a cage containing the canary from earlier. Lightning flashes from the shaft ahead. The canary turns over on its perch, dead. The cart begins to ascend the mine shaft ahead as ravens peer out from behind the broken boards surrounding the shaft. A "window" above shows the storm going on outside the shaft. Lightning strikes the top of the tower protruding above, which collapses on top of the "window", effectively shutting out all light from the shaft.

Now plunged into darkness, the cart stops at the peak of the hill. A fuse is heard in the distance, and soon is visible snaking its way along either side of the car. It winds across the floor, and a green lantern is suddenly illuminated. It sits on top of boxes and boxes of dynamite, hooked to the quickly approaching fuse. The fuse reaches the boxes and jets of flame are shot out as the car drops at a 95° angle (the 95° drop is a 45° spiral beyond vertical drop). A camera flashes and daylight (or more darkness if riding at night) bursts into view. A barrel roll and a half are followed by a half loop. The car slows to a stop back in the station, and riders are unloaded.

Awards[edit]

  • On July 2, 2007, Theme Park Insider awarded Mystery Mine its "Best New Theme Park Attraction" award for 2007.
  • Mystery Mine was ranked 48th on the Amusement Today Top 50 Best Steel Coasters list for 2007.
  • In September 2007, Amusement Today announced that Mystery Mine was awarded the #2 new ride for 2007. Cedar Point's Maverick was #1.

Ride Elements[edit]

  • Two vertical lifts
  • 95 degree drop
  • Heartline roll
  • Turn-over loop

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2014. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  2. ^ "Gerstlauer busy in 2011". Park World Magazine. 29 December 2010. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  3. ^ "Projects". Ride Entertainment Group. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 

External links[edit]