Look Out Below! Honest Review of Montana’s First Alpine Coaster
Summer is such a great time to be in Montana. Even though it seems that summer only lasts 2 weeks. Summertime in Montana is all about adventures. And there is no better place for adventures than touring the shore of Flathead Lake.
Just this past weekend I loaded the family up for a good ol fashioned "Griswold Family Roadtrip." Everyone knew the destination was going to be near the water when I hooked up my crusty old fishing boat behind our vehicle. But, Daddy had plans to hook some lunkers. Regardless, I encouraged them that I had a "surprise" for them. Little did they know the "surprise" was a stop at Montana's first and only Alpine Coaster in Lakeside, MT.
The look on their faces, when we pulled into the parking lot of the Flathead Lake Alpine Coaster, was priceless. The car was immediately filled with excitement and fear. "Are we REALLY going to ride this thing?" My son asked. "Dad, why are my legs shaking?"
The Flathead Lake Alpine Coaster is fun for the whole family.
According to the Flathead Lake Alpine Coaster website
The track is roughly 4,000 ft in length. 1,000 ft to the top and 3,000 ft down. Top speed is 25mp. The patron is in control of their speed all the way down. Total time it can take from start to finish is 7-9 minutes depending on how fast/slow one chooses to go.
Riders simply sit in a sled on a track system. The sled is pulled to the top using a cable system and then gravity takes over getting you down the track. For me, the ride to the top was scenic and relaxing. The ride to the bottom was sheer terror (in a good way). Being a heavier guy, I was afraid that gravity was going to get me to speeds that would break the land speed record. Thankfully there are brakes on the sled. There is also a safety feature on each sled that does not allow them to go any faster than they should. Meaning the daredevils can only go as fast as is safe.
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The park offered a "Buy 2, Get 1" package that we took advantage of. Allow us to spend a good portion of the afternoon on the mountain. Not to mention gaining a little more confidence with each ride. At the end of the day, 3 rides were PLENTY for this old man.
All in all, the staff was great. They were very helpful and nice. The lines were not much of a wait to ride. And the price, though seeming expensive at first, was worth it.
I am also glad that they didn't have any cameras snapping photos of my facial features on the way down. I can only imagine how they would have turned out in the gift shop.