Sunday, May 31, 2015

ZDT's Tops Out Switchback + Other Ride Progress

© ZDT's Amusement Park
Things are moving quickly now that vertical construction is underway on Switchback at Texas' ZDT's Amusement Park.  We first saw supports for the wooden shuttle coaster go up for the ride's far-end turn, but things have gone higher in recent weeks.

Above is a photo of when Switchback's highest support was put into place.  That was at the very top of the 63 foot tall lift.  You can see the initial 180 or so degree turn also starting to be put into place, after which the trains will plunge down a 58 foot drop.

© ZDT's Amusement Park
This photo lets us see the entire L-shaped layout of the Switchback.  Designed by the Gravity Group, the ride will start with the lift/drop seen in the background on the right.  It will race toward the building in the center of the photo, pass through it as it turns, then head toward a 104 degree overbank turn at the far left.

Passing through the building again the ride will travel up a spike that will be in the right foreground, losing momentum and then completing the course backwards.  A switch-track section located after the first drop will point the locomotive-themed train back to the station.

© ZDT's Amusement Park
In this even more recent photo the start of the ride's first drop is in place.  The steep plunge will get the train moving at 40 miles per hour.

A lot of progress has taken place in a short amount of time, I can't wait to see the rest of the coaster go up - especially that reverse spike!