Ride the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train before it opens

While you can’t quite ride it in person yet, Disney is hinting at opening the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train ride in Disney World’s Fantasy Land sometime in the next 45 days!  No more 20 second teaser videos, it’s time you take a look at the FULL ride video, right here, right now!  Enjoy!

Zip-Line Roller Coaster

While I can honestly say I’ve never actually thought about the carbon footprint of a particular roller coaster the idea of an eco-friendly zip-line coaster is intriguing to say the least.

When the Rattlesnake opened last Friday, it turned a theme park staple into a thrill ride like no other in the United States. And it will launch the next generation of zip lining.

The nation’s first zip-line roller coaster is part of a $1.5 million expansion at Florida EcoSafaris in Central Florida. The new attraction puts dangling passengers through sharp curves and jarring dips, thanks to a rigid-rail system that runs overhead and the pull of gravity below.

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Cheetah Hunt at Busch Gardens Tampa

With 4,429 feet of green track and a 90 second ride time, Cheetah Hunt is the longest roller coaster at Busch Gardens in Tampa. Plus with a twisty, turny route that zips past a habitat with an actual Cheetah, it offers nice views of the entire park and rocks through a roaring-waters canyon, the steel beauty looks very nice.

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Dragon Challenge Roller Coaster

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is now open at Universal Orlando Islands of Adventure. One attraction, is the worlds only dueling inverted roller coaster, known as the Dragon Challenge.

Most individuals that have visited the park in the past will realize this isn’t exactly a new coaster, in fact, it was most recently known as the Dueling Dragons roller coaster. It was transformed into Dragon Challenge and is based on the Triwizard Tournament from Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire.

The queue area, however, is new and very cool. It snakes through the claustrophobic castle passages as you await your challenge.

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World’s Fastest Roller Coaster

It’s here! The new world’s fastest roller coaster – the Formula Rossa – has just opened at the new Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi!

Reaching speeds of around 240kph, it will be the highlight of your trip (if you get the chance to go).

Here’s a front seat POV video of the ride with voiceover commentary:

The current preview videos all fall a bit flat for me. I’m looking forward to seeing (and sharing) “real” videos complete with screams 😉

Create Roller Coaster Videos Everyone Wants to Watch

roller coaster videosIf you are heading off to a theme park, it has probably crossed your mind to make some videos while you are on the rides, so that others can experience the same thrills you did. Unfortunately, most roller coaster videos end up shaky and blurry. Don’t believe me? Do a search on YouTube and see how many of the theme park ride videos you actually want to watch from start to finish.

We live in an era where technology is so advanced that for $100 you can buy a good quality, HD handheld digital video camera that you can take anywhere (some are even waterproof and others double-up as a video and stills camera). Not long ago you would have had to carry a much larger, poorer quality video camera with you.

How do you use this technology to your advantage and take great roller coaster videos?

First of all, my caveat: I am not encouraging you to break the theme park’s rules. If the theme park specifically bans cameras from rides then you should heed their warnings. The rules are not there to ruin your fun; they are designed for your safety. Taking cameras on theme park rides could result in you or others getting hurt, and even cause damage to the ride itself.

That said, if the theme park does not restrict the use of cameras, here are some tips for taking better videos on roller coasters:

  1. Always make sure your camera is secure. Holding your video camera in your hand is not enough to ensure its safety. Theme park rides are designed to move very fast and surprise you with twists and turns. If your video camera is not securely attached to your wrist or clothing then you run the risk of dropping it or knocking it against something, both of which will probably break the camera and potentially harm you or others. A great roller coaster video is no good if it is never seen because your camera fell to the ground from 100 feet. You can also consider strapping it right to your head using one of the cool new Go Pro Hero HD 2 wearable cameras.
  2. Make sure your camera is held steady. This can be impossible to ensure when you are moving at 80mph through loops, twists and corkscrews, but the steadier you hold your camera the better the quality will be and the easier it will be to watch (nobody likes to view shaky videos). Try to hold your camera in both hands with your elbows held tight into your sides. Holding your arms outstretched will cause more shake and less control over what you are filming.
  3. Decide whether you are taking a point-of-view (POV) video or a video of the people on the ride. Often people swap between the different options and as a result there is a lot of shakiness and blur on the video as the camera changes position and re-focuses. My preference with roller coaster videos is to take it from the point of view of the rider. Videoing the faces of your friends can be fun for you, but if you want others to feel some of the thrill of the ride that you felt, you should show them the ride from your perspective.
  4. To take a great POV video, aim to sit at the front of the ride. This way you will capture the ride itself, and a great view of the tracks and all the upcoming dips, twists and turns, without having to film the backs of people’s heads at the same time. It will also mean you can hold you camera lower and steadier.
  5. Start recording your video before the ride starts and don’t press stop until the ride has finished. This will enable you to edit the start and end of the video (the parts that are usually the shakiest) and still have the full ride captured.
  6. Watch some of the many theme park videos that are uploaded to the Internet everyday and decide what it is you like about your favourites. Then emulate them

A trip to a theme park is a fun experience and you can share it with others through video. Follow the tips shared here and you will be able to produce roller coaster videos that capture some of the thrills and excitement you enjoyed.

Roller Coaster Videos POV

If you’ve been browsing Youtube for videos of theme park rides, you may be wondering what roller coaster videos pov means. POV stands for point of view i.e. you are seeing what the rider is seeing and, in my opionion, the best videos of rides are those taken from a pov perspective.

It can be really tempting to take videos of your face (and those of your friends) when you are on a roller coaster – and for you and your friends they will probably be really amusing videos. But if you plan on showing these videos to others and sharing them on YouTube then most people will not want to watch strangers screaming and pulling faces for 3 minutes.

The pov video gives the viewer a really good feel of the ride and how exciting it is. It doesn’t quite match actually being on the ride but it is the best alternative to being there.

Take a look at this short pov video of the Top Thrill Dragster ride at Cedar Point – isn’t this much more exciting that watching the riders faces?

Funny Rollercoaster Videos

I’m always on the lookout for more funny rollercoaster videos and I just came across this one on YouTube.

This was taken on the SAW ride at Thorpe Park in the UK:

The faces this guy is pulling are hilarious. His girlfriend seems to look quite serene through most of it (except when she’s laughing at him) but his face is all over the place.

Yet again, he’s trying to act all cool at the beginning and end – but it’s too late….it’s all on camera!

Hershey Park Roller Coaster Videos

Hershey Park in Hershey, PA combines 2 of my major passions: roller coasters and chocolate, so it already sounds like a great place to me. But what about the Hershey Park roller coaster videos?

Hershey Park has 11 roller coasters, including the boomerang style Sidewinder seen in the video above. This is a high speed rides that propels you forward through 3 loops and then, after a brief respite, back again to the beginning.

In this video of the Lightening Racer roller coaster (a double track wooden coaster) you get a really great view of the extent of the track involved in some of these rides:

Other roller coasters at Hershey Park include Sooperdooperlooper, Storm Runner and Wild Mouse.

Videos of Roller Coaster Accidents

With so many people able to take video on their mobile phones as well as a host of compact and low cost cameras, it’s inevitable that there are a number of videos of roller coaster accidents available online.

Thankfully, accidents on theme park rides don’t happen very often as there are strict laws governing theme parks in most countries (and naturally the parks themselves take safety very seriously to protect their reputations – I mean, who wants to spend the day at a theme park with a poor safety record?).

We included one such theme park accident video just a couple of months ago.