You’re flying down the mountain. Trees whiz past you as you zig and zag, twirl and dip. You’re at Gatlinburg’s Ober Gatlinburg, so you’re on skis, right? Maybe a snowboard? No. You’re riding the rails of the new Ski Mountain Coaster. Opened in August of 2015, the Ski Mountain Coaster offers guests a thrilling downhill experience at any time of the year.
Ski Mountain Coaster takes riders on a 5½ minutes wild ride over 3750 feet long. Riders will depart near the tubing park (another great activity at Ober Gatlinburg). You begin with a leisurely and calm ride 1000 feet up the mountain, through the forest bordering the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Although you’re just a stone’s throw from the bustling Parkway in Gatlinburg, you feel like you’re miles from civilization. Once you’ve made you way to the top, just below the peak of Mt. Harrison, you’re sent back down the mountain. Your descent will start slowly at first, but will gradually accelerate to speeds of up to 25 mph.
You can control your speed with handbrakes, or you can simply let gravity take over and experience some significant G-force as you whiz through turns and corkscrews. The thrill level is largely up to you.
The excitement is suitable for the whole family, ages three and up. Riders age nine and up can tackle the mountain alone. Younger riders must be accompanied by an adult in the carts designed to accommodate 2 riders. With a weight limit of 300 lbs, most double riders will be an adult and child rather than two adults.
Ride them All!
Since the Ski Mountain Coaster does not rely on snow or ice for the downhill run, the course is open year-round, weather permitting. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.
With all of the fantastic activities offered by Ober Gatlinburg when no snow is on the ground, visitors can easily spend the entire day on the mountain, just not on the slopes. In addition to the Ski Mountain Coaster, adventure seekers can ride the Aerial Tramway, the Alpine Slide, and the Scenic Chairlift. When warmer weather arrives, you’ll want to add the Amaze’n Maze, ice skating and Ober’s water rides to your activities list.
After your wild ride at Ober Gatlinburg, why not ride these coasters too?