America’s 7 Raddest Roller Coasters

Summers usually bring to mind bonfires, bikinis and burgers, but what about roller coasters? It’s prime time to hit the theme parks in search of steely, strapped-in, scream-for-your-life thrills on the gnarliest rides you can find. Like, you know, these. —Jason Epstein

Bizarro, Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, New Jersey Formerly Medusa, a totally fun twist ’n’ turn coaster, Bizarro ups the crazy to a ludicrous level. Along with looping, rolling and corkscrewing, you get the pandemonium of pyrotechnics, fog machines, water effects and a barrage of audio clips from movies like Zoolander, Se7en, Lord of the Rings and, of course, Superman. Bizarro, indeed. Key stats: 132-foot drop, 61 mph, 4 Gs, 2:20-minute ride More info: sixflags.com

X2, Six Flags Magic Mountain in Valencia, California Try to keep your cheeks from flapping, because coasting is one thing you won’t do on this bad boy. Riders enter the 5th dimension (according to what must be very serious findings from Six Flags-employed scientists) due to seats that allow for 360-degree independent rotation, contributing to a different experience every time. Key stats: 215-foot drop, 76 mph, 4 Gs, 2-minute ride More info: More info: sixflags.com

Kraken, SeaWorld Orlando in Orlando, Florida The Kraken features a huge vertical loop, a diving loop, a zero-G roll, a double-cobra roll and more for a total of seven inversions. But the coolest part is when, just as you’re leaving the station, you realize it’s totally OK to yell, "Release the Kraken!" at the top of your lungs. Key stats: 144-foot drop, 65 mph, 3.9 Gs, 2:02-minute ride More info: seaworldparks.com

Superman: Krypton Coaster, Six Flags Fiesta in San Antonio, Texas This steel beauty is the largest in a state where everything is bigger and bigger is better. It has corkscrews, spirals, face-pounding Gs and a floorless design, leaving nothing between you and the great state of Texas. Key stats: 163-foot drop, 70 mph, 3.8 Gs, 2:35-minute ride More info: sixflags.com

Hydra the Revenge, Dorney Park in South Whitehall Township, Pennsylvania In Greek mythology, one of Hercules’ tasks was to slay the Hydra, a serpent-like beast with multiple heads. Here, the rider’s task is to slay his desire to hurl while going through an inversion before the main lift and drop, then a dive loop, a zero-G roll, two corkscrew rolls, a cobra roll, air-time hills, another corkscrew and a helix. Yikes. Key stats: 105-foot drop, 53 mph, 2:35-minute ride More info: dorneypark.com

Riddler’s Revenge, Six Flags Magic Mountain in Valencia, California Riddle me this: what’s more fun than sitting down for a ride on a roller coaster? Standing up as you blast through a 124-foot vertical loop, diving loops, inclined loops and corkscrews. So throw your hands in the air and don’t hold on for dear life. Key stats: 146-foot drop, 65 mph, 4.2 Gs, 3-minute ride More info: sixflags.com

Kingda Ka, Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, New Jersey Last but certainly not least, this hydraulic-launch monster towers above all others as the tallest in the world and the fastest in North America. To put it in perspective, imagine flying up and then down the side of a 45-story building at a 90-degree angle. If you enjoy feeling like you’re going to die, Kingda Ka is right up your alley. Key stats: 418-foot drop, 128 mph, 5.1 Gs, 28-second ride More info: sixflags.com

 

 

 

 

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