Today, a roller coaster ride that offers a lot of excitement is a must if you go to an amusement park. All you require for the ride is dollops of guts to sit on the hot seat and be prepared for a whimsical ride, which would shake you up by leaps and bounds. Before having this ride on your next visit to an amusement park, have a small insider on the ride’s history i.e. how it started and evolved over the years. It might be surprising to you but the first taste of the thrill started in the beginning of the 18th century in Russia. The trace of the ecstasy experienced then has lasted centuries to reach the world of today.
Interesting Information on Background of Roller Coaster
Roller coaster first started the joyride in Russia with the Russian Ice slide. It was a steep ice slide down the hill, which made use of a sledge that was made of wood or ice. The ride involved risk, so there were professionals who provided their services for the fee that they were paid. It was when these slides grew in popularity that a French businessman decided to open such a marvel at France as well. Unfortunately, the ice melted but he was not disappointed and he started with a wax model which would suit all kinds of weather.
The joyride brought with it lots of danger and accidents were a common sight. People were so much excited with the whole new thing that its dangers did not have an effect on them. The next step was to ensure the safety of the rider and hence, a crude track structure was made so that the slide followed a planned way. It was at this juncture that the first attempt for a ‘loop-the-loop’ was made in France, in the year 1850. The Centrifuge Railway would travel through a loop, with just the centrifugal force holding the car, rider and the track.
Mauch Chunk railway was the American beginning of the roller coaster. It was a transportation system which carried coal from the mines to the port Mauch Chunk. La Marcus Thompson Switchback railway was built in the 1890 and was true "roller coaster" of early time. Built of wood, the ride consisted of riders climbing up a flight of stairs to board the coaster car, which was then pushed out of the station, so it went down a hill and over a few bumps until it ran out of momentum at the other end.
A slight change in the ride was made when not just thrill, but even beauty was added to the ride. Scenic roller coaster followed suit. It was then that the track mounted brakes were developed so that there was no need of an attendant in the car. The track would automatically operate, while the attendant would control its functioning from the station itself. It is the most common method used today. While the Great Depression brought a depression in the roller coaster mania as well, it was soon restored by the Disneyland, which brought a revival of the ride.
Roller coaster soon found a place in all the amusement parks in all sizes, from the small to medium to large. While the wooden structure and steel structures had a subdued competition between themselves, both raised the demand for roller coaster unknowingly. The multi loop structure gained birth and became quite popular. John Alley’s Racer and Arrow’s Corkscrew model, which emphasized on the inverting roller coaster and many more, have all stipulated the growth of the ride.
Roller Coasters have come a long way since their origin in Russia. From the earlier models, which were devised in nature’s lap, to the latest ones, being the stand up version in the King’s Island, Ohio, USA. Called the King Cobra, the latest roller coaster has moved a step ahead than the normal clichéd ones and has the rider standing, in the car instead of sitting. With the passage of time, roller coasters have made their mark, having the caliber of an entertainer as well as a transporter.