7 Must-Try Roller Coasters

A daring new ride, X Flight, debuts at Six Flags Great America this month. Here are seven other tracks that all speed junkies should try at least once.

May 11, 2012

Bringing new meaning to the phrase "off the rails," Six Flags Great America's new roller coaster, X Flight, opens to the public on May 16 with one very unusual feature: There is no track above or below you. Thrill seekers sit in pairs, suspended on either side of the track with feet dangling, soaring at speeds of 55 mph through 3,000 feet of drops and various inversions, including a barrel roll and 360-degree twists. Intrigued, we asked Dave Altman, the president of American Coaster Enthusiasts, to compile the ultimate roller-coaster bucket list, which loops and rolls all the way from Sweden to Brooklyn. Don't forget to pack your Dramamine.

Here's the X Flight simulation video, which will either persuade you to visit Chicago or swear off thrill rides forever:

3. Lisebergbanen: Liseberg, Gothenberg, Sweden
This terrain-hugging steel coaster was built in 1987 by the famous German coaster designer Anton Schwarzkopf and replaced the park's wooden scenic railway. Themed like railroad trains, the vehicles leave the station at the bottom of the hill and make a sharp left turn to climb the hillside to the top. The coaster utilizes the topography of the hill to incorporate a number of high-speed turns, including three highly banked "loops" that are basically lying on the steep slope of the hillside. The track is quite close to the ground, which makes it seem like it's going even faster than it is.

Slides 1-4 and 6-7 credit: Wikimedia Commons, Slide 5 credit: Flickr Commons
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