by Elizabeth Ringas
Volcano, The Blast Coaster, has made its last trip, to its final home with some other Mid-Atlantic favorites like Big Bad Wolf, Apocalypse, and the large Hypersonic entrance sign. A car, some track, and signage arrived at its new home at the National Roller Coaster Museum and Archives in Plainview, Texas, this week. As sad as we were to lose such a treasured, iconic ride at Kings Dominion, it is comforting to know that it will be preserved and remembered for its contribution and significance in roller coaster history.
Volcano, The Blast Coaster, offered many rides and some momentous roll-backs at Kings Dominion from 1998-2018 before it was dismantled this season. We in the Mid-Atlantic certainly miss our ERT sessions on this special coaster. Manufactured by Intamin, it was the world’s first linear-induction (LIM) suspended coaster and the world’s only roller coaster to blast you vertically through the mouth of a volcano. Volcano held two records 1) the world’s fastest inverted coaster at 70 mph until 2002 when Wicked Twister, an inverted impulse coaster opened at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, opened, and 2) the world’s tallest inversion at 155 ft until Gatekeeper opened in 2013, also at Cedar Point.
The volcano that partially housed the ride was originally built in 1979 to house three rides – The Land of Dooz (later Smurf Mountain), The Voyage of Atlantis (later The Haunted River), and The Time Shaft. When these rides were removed, it was a remarkable reuse of a signature skyline to create a unique ride experience.
Not familiar with the National Roller Coaster Museum and Archives? It offers roller coaster history a place to be seen and enjoyed in the future. The museum is currently undergoing an extensive expansion that will offer additional display space and advance it towards being more visitor friendly. If you are in the Plainview area, visits can be arranged, so please reach out to your regional rep to make plans.
May Volcano, The Blast Coaster, ride on in our memories!