Those of you that know me well, know that I have two fears in life: Snakes and Rollercoasters! Today I conquered both and survived! I’m not even sure where to begin, the information today was overwhelming and there is so much to share with you! I took one of my good running friends, Daisy, with me!
First, three years ago a new coaster started it’s journey to reality. A story was created after many hours of creative time and talent coming together. Brian Morrow, VP of Theme Park Experience Design, was available to answer questions for us today. He described Busch Garden’s creative process of taking an original idea and turning it in a family friendly coaster. They knew with the placement of the ride in the Egypt area of that it would need Egyptian flair. Ideas such as snakes, larger cats (however they just utilized that for Cheetah Hunt!) and mummies were tossed around and they eventually landed on snakes with a story of a Cobra’s Curse.
Three years, four new tunnels, two new bridges, relocation of a portion of the train track, moving of the flamingo exhibit… Lead to a new level of “storytelling in the queue because it’s new for the park. I think guests will respond well, they will not expect this. It’s a much bigger experience than we are used to seeing for the park,” Brian described as his favorite part of the ride! Cobra’s Curse is a full on media attraction. The cue features a immersive queue with snake exhibit and projection mapping entertainment!
The moving loading conveyer was utilized for this ride to allow a 10-15% increase in the capacity of the ride. With the lower height requirement of 42″ the audience for this ride was expanded, therefore causing Busch Gardens to utilize a loading system that would increase the number of people it could handle within an hour! This should also translate into lower wait times as well.
The coaster features three settings – forward facing, rear facing and unlocked (for free spinning). In the unlocked mode, the spinning is determined by the weight distribution within the cart, so no two rides are alike! Here are the important stats: First in the US to feature free spinning, 70 foot vertical lift system leads you onto a 2,100 foot track that can ride up to 8 trains at a time, built by Mack Rides.
I asked Brian the tough question about the recent issue with Sheikra. I was encouraged and surprised by the answer. He educated us that “when a coaster does something like that, it’s supposed to. Coasters are checking hundreds of sensors every time it cycles through. That’s what they are supposed to do.” While a long wait at the top of Sheikra was not in the plans of several park goers a few weeks ago, the good news is that the ride recognized an issue and stopped so that there wasn’t a serious accident or issue.
I will only post one snake photo. My photos in the exhibit didn’t turn out great, but Daisy was brave enough to pet one of the snacks over at the Media Lounge!
Are you planning on taking on Cobra’s Curse?