Giant Dipper (Belmont Park)

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Big Dipper
MissionBeachRollercoaster 640pixels.JPG
Wooden roller coaster in Belmont Park
Belmont Park (San Diego)

32°46′18″N 117°15′0″W / 32.77167°N 117.25000°W / 32.77167; -117.25000Coordinates: 32°46′18″N 117°15′0″W / 32.77167°N 117.25000°W / 32.77167; -117.25000

Mission Beach Roller Coaster
Giant Dipper (Belmont Park) is located in San Diego County, California
Giant Dipper (Belmont Park)
Giant Dipper (Belmont Park) is located in California
Giant Dipper (Belmont Park)
Giant Dipper (Belmont Park) is located in the US
Giant Dipper (Belmont Park)
Site in U.S. state of California
Location 3000 Mission Boulevard, San Diego, California
Coordinates 32°46′18″N 117°15′0″W / 32.77167°N 117.25000°W / 32.77167; -117.25000
Area 2.8 acres (1.1 ha)
Built 1925
Architect Frank Prior, Fredrick Church
Architectural style "Bobs"-type coaster
NRHP Reference # 78000753[1]
CHISL # 1044[2]
SDHL # 90
Significant dates
Added to NRHP December 27, 1978[1]
Designated NHL February 27, 1987[4]
Designated SDHL December 7, 1973[3]
Status Operating
Opening date July 4, 1925
General statistics
Type Wood
Manufacturer Frank Prior, Fredrick Church
Designer Frank Prior, Fredrick Church
Model Twister
Track layout 8 layers laminated wood strips with 1/4"x3" wide steel rail
Lift/launch system Chain lift hill
Height 70 ft (21 m)
Drop 60 ft (18 m)
Length 2,600 ft (790 m)
Speed 55 mph (89 km/h)
Inversions 0
Duration 1:45
Max vertical angle 40 degrees at bottom of first drop°
Height restriction 50 in (127 cm)
Big Dipper at RCDB
Pictures of Big Dipper at RCDB

The Giant Dipper, also known as the Mission Beach Roller Coaster, is a historical wooden roller coaster located in Belmont Park, a small amusement park in Mission Beach in San Diego, California. The Giant Dipper was built in 1925. The roller coaster and its namesake at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk are the only remaining wooden roller coasters on the West Coast designed by noted roller coaster designers Frank Prior and Frederick Church.


Threatened with demolition, in 1978 the 2,600-foot coaster was added to the National Register of Historic Places, which afforded it legal protection.[5] Eight years later, in 1986, it was designated a National Historic Landmark.[3]


In 1997, the Giant Dipper held a coaster–riding marathon sponsored by local radio station, Star 100.7. The marathon consisted of eleven consecutive days riding the coaster for more than 12 hours per day. The radio station arranged a second marathon in 1998, which was eventually won by contestants who split a check for $50,000 in cash prize after riding the coaster for 70 days.


  1. ^ a b National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ "California Historical Landmark: San Diego County". Office of Historic Preservation. California State Parks. Retrieved 2012-10-13. 
  3. ^ a b "Historical Landmarks Designated by the San Diego Historical Resources Board" (PDF). City of San Diego. 
  4. ^ "Mission Beach Roller Coaster". National Historic Landmarks Quioklinks. National Park Service. Archived from the original on 2012-10-08. Retrieved March 2012.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  5. ^ "Inside the Icon: Belmont Park". 

External links[edit]