Fans of theme parks are always looking for the latest exciting ride or attraction to experience on their visits to parks. Ride enthusiasts are also searching for a death-defying experiences on thrill rides and roller coasters soaring through the air.
Roller coaster fanatics are always a bit sad when one of their favorite coasters is temporarily closed during a visit and even more disheartened when it closes permanently. When coaster fanatics learned that one of their favorites was going to be closed permanently, there was lots of speculation on what would happen and if it would be replaced and with what.
Hersheypark opened in 1906 and is operated by Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company (HSY) . The Hershey, Pa., theme park began as an amusement park for Hershey Chocolate Company employees. Luckily the award-winning theme park isn’t just for employees anymore!
Hershey’s Iconic Ride Closes
The Wildcat was Hersheypark’s first roller coaster when it opened in 1923 and was originally dubbed The Joy Ride. Ultimately, the ride fell into disrepair, but Hersheypark brought it back, siting The Cat is Back in 1996. This version of the ride remained opened until the end of July 2022.
When Hersheypark announced the closure of the Wild Cat, theme park fans and coaster fanatics had high hopes on what might take its place. While it was sad for many to see it go, collectors were able to get some pretty neat souvenirs from the iconic ride. Portions of the wood and steel tracks were sold off for $300 each in a limited quantity of only 160 pieces that sold out quickly.
Wooden roller coasters are really a different beast than the new rides, they’re a bit bumpy and have a sound that is undeniable. There are roller coaster fans, but there are also wooden roller coaster fans, who will wait in long lines to experience them the best way possible. When riding on a wooden coaster, there’s a sense of nostalgia that might bring back memories or thoughts of the good old days.
Fans Rejoice with Announcement
The Wild Cat fans were hopeful that the ride would find a way to remain in the park in some way, and well they are certainly going to be excited to learn it will. The park announced the new ride taking the place of The Wild Cat will be Wildcat’s Revenge a hybrid roller coaster which will be made of steel and wood.
The hybrid roller coaster makeover is called the Rocky Mountain Construction RMC treatment. The Rocky Mountain Construction Co. is based out of Idaho, and services the world in manufacturing and constructing roller coasters, water parks, go kart tracks, mini golf, and steel buildings. The company is famous for its I-Box track and Topper Track which is used on wooden roller coasters.
The steel tracks will be added to the existing Wild Cat’s tracks. The new ride is expected to have a maximum speed of 62 mph, and the ride should last 2 minutes and 36 seconds and extend across 3,510 feet of hybrid tracks. The ride will go up to 140 feet in the air with four inversions and a drop of 82 degrees.
The ride will feature the world’s largest underflip. The park describes the underflip as “an inversion that begins with an upward climb, followed by a counterclockwise 270-degree roll and a dive down towards the side.”
Roller coaster riders will need to be at least 48 inches tall to ride. The new Wildcat’s Revenge is going to open is set to open in the summer of 2023 and on the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Original Wild Cat.