5 Record Breaking Mountain Coasters

STORY BY Patrick 15th February 2017

If you’ve not been to a mountain resort that has one, your first question might be, “What’s a mountain coaster?”

The answer is simple: a downhill roller coaster.

Nearly 50 have now been installed around the world, mostly at ski resorts.  There are several different manufacturers and designs (some with a single central monorail, others multiple rails) but the concept is the same.  You use the ski lifts that are popular in winter to get skiers and boarders up the slopes, and in summer for mountain bikers, to also bring coaster riders up to the start of the downhill roller coaster.

So whilst conventional theme park roller coasters need to ratchet your car up to the top of a slope to get you moving, with mountain coasters the ski lift does the work and it’s just a case of heading back downhill, usually one or two to a car.

For ski resorts mountain coasters help them spread their business through the year, with a major summer attraction although most operate in winter too thanks to their tough construction, usually using stainless steel, and positioning raised up above any snow.

Although mountain coasters can be scary and may restrict unaccompanied children under a certain age (which varies from coaster to coaster) from using them, most are fun for pretty much all ages.

Here are the five that claim to be the longest, highest, steepest, fastest and latest.


Highest in The World: Glacier 3000, Switzerland

The mountain coaster at Glacier 3000, located high above the village of Les Diablerets, close to Gstaad in Switzerland begins at 2,971m (9,747 feet) above sea level and is 1000m (3,300 feet) long.  Due to the altitude and its location in a glacier world of eternal ice it’s particularly important to dress up warm to ride this one!


Longest In The World: Naturlandia, Andorra

The longest mountain coaster in the world is reported to be at Naturlandia, an outdoor activities theme back in Andorra.  The coaster, named the Tobotronc, is reported to be a remarkable 5.3km (3.3 miles) long descending 400 vertical metres over its length between the park’s two bases at 2000 and 1600m above sea level.


Steepest in the World: Mieders, Austria

Mieders is a small village with a population of around 1600 that’s close to Innsbruck, capital of the Tirol region. The village’s summer toboggan run at the little Serlesbahnen ski area is officially the world’s steepest alpine coaster and one of the longest too at 2.8km (2.7 miles).  The monorail style coaster extends from the top station to the base station of the gondola, leading through the lower wooded slopes of the forest, parallel to the route of the cable car.


Fastest In The World: Funbob, Italy

Most of the world’s alpine coasters have fairly similar maximum speeds of around 20-25mph (32-40 kph), but one claims to be marginally faster than the rest with a top speed of 30mph/48kph. The Funbob Alpine Coaster in Italy is 650m long and like Mieders has a monorail design.


Newest Mountain Coaster: Revelstoke, Canada

Christchurch Adventure Park, a mountain bike park in New Zealand is due to get a mountain coaster by December this year (2017) in the meantime Revelstoke in BC, Canada installed a 1.4km long coaster, ‘The Pipe’ in spring 2016 which drops 279 vertical metres (915 feet) over its 1.4 km (0.87 miles) length.

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