Trip to the Timbers

By , December 9, 2016
Tyler Mullins

You can spend a lot of time sitting in front of a computer in anticipation for a new ride. It’s easy to drop hours watching its virtual POVs, days following its progress on a webcam, or – in my case – months creating and editing drawings for many of its 500-something bents. But no matter how much time you spend staring at the screen, you don’t quite realize its monstrous size or just how awesome a ride it will be until you see it in person.


Last week I had the opportunity to make this realization when I visited Mystic Timbers’ construction site at Kings Island. It wasn’t my first time seeing the coaster in person – over the course of the summer and fall I occasionally visited the park with friends and family and saw the construction of the new ride, albeit each time from a distance. I could only catch glimpses of it from the train, the Eiffel Tower, or the midway. But when I returned on a cold December morning, donning my steel toed boots and a hard hat, I was able to stand in the center of the monster and truly appreciate just how incredible it’ll be.


So what will make Mystic Timbers one of the most incredible rides of 2017? For starters, the height. The ride is 109.2-feet tall, or taller than any other roller coaster Great Coasters International has built in this country. As I watched construction workers climb the interior of the structure, it was fascinating how they were completely dwarfed by how big the ride is.


Also impressive is its location. The ride snakes through the woods, careens over the side of steep hills, and even jumps over White Water Canyon a mind boggling six times. It will interact with the rapids ride, the trees, and the railroad, hurtling pass everything at speeds of up to 53mph.


Another thing that really stood out was the ride’s scale. Sure, being tall is one thing. But this ride is sprawled over the landscape and you really don’t realize just how big parts of it are until you’re staring straight at them. For example, as some concept art shows, the ride will leap over a large pond as it heads toward White Water Canyon. For those unfamiliar, this is actually the rapids ride’s reservoir, where it pulls all its water from to operate.

Photo courtesy Kings Island


This area is also the reason I was at the park this morning. Mystic Timbers will fly over the reservoir twice, traveling over some massive steel bridges and across a concrete island now built in the center of the reservoir. I needed to snap some photos and check some measurements for back at the office, but while out I also had the opportunity to take in just how incredible this will be.


Visiting Mystic Timbers’ job site was a really cool opportunity that gave me a new perspective and appreciation for the ride and the crews that are building it. It really helped me make a lot of connections between my work in the office and what’s being built at the park, plus it’s always nice to visit Kings Island. It was easily one of the highlights of my time at Great Coasters, which is quickly wrapping up. My last day is in only a couple weeks – where did the time go?!


I’ll try and share a bit more soon about what else I’ve been working on, so stay tuned!

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