Wicked is a Zierer LSM launched steel coaster at Lagoon Amusement Park in Farmington, Utah. Opened in 2007, it operates with six trains consisting of two rows seating four across for a total capacity of eight riders. The restraint is a lap bar. The fact that the trains are only two rows long forces Lagoon to deviate from its standard policy. Lagoon has a rather unusual policy in that single riders are not permitted to sit in the first or last row of any ride. This means that on Cannibal, which has three rows, single riders must sit in the second row. On Wicked single riders sit in the second and last row by default. It’s worth noting that although Wicked has a single rider queue, because this is a popular coaster with a low capacity, the wait to get on tends to be long. In fact I found that the single rider queue was moving slower than the regular queue.
Layout and Elements
Wicked features a double out and back layout with a vertical launch hill, Immelmann turn, heartline roll, two half-pipe elements and tunnel. There is some disagreement as to whether the one inversion is actually a zero-g roll or a heartline roll. RCDB (Roller Coaster Database) says that it’s a zero-g roll whereas other sources describe it as a heartline roll. My own impression, based on the elevation of the track and movement of the train – as well as my recollection of riding Wicked two years ago – is that it’s a heartline roll.
The ride begins with a left turn out of the loading area around a bend and into a tunnel. While in the tunnel the train is suddenly launched, first horizontally, then vertically up a 110-foot hill. Off to a good start. On the other side of the hill is a 90-degree free fall followed by a small dip affording some airtime. This leads into the so-called Immelmann turn, which in this case is basically a highly overbanked turn that comes very close to inverting. Whatever, it’s pretty forceful. Shortly after exiting the turn, the train enters the heartline roll – and it is wicked! Next are a couple of nicely banked turns leading to the block brake. From the block brake the train drops and navigates two half-pipe elements (90-degree turns going in different directions ) before entering a turnaround/helix, dropping into another tunnel and returning to the loading station.
Final Thoughts and Rating
Launches are invariably a blast and I like the fact that this coaster is launched up the vertical hill. Admittedly, the launch takes some of the edge off (I’ve had the unnerving experience of going up a vertical lift hill while looking helplessly up into the wild blue yonder with the chain clanking away on a number of coasters) but it certainly is fun. While free falls from vertical hills may be a case of been there, done that to those who ride a lot of coasters, they never fail to give me an adrenaline rush. The elements follow a nice sequence, the pacing is good and the airtime is more than sufficient. Additionally, this coaster boasts a g-force of 4.8 and doesn’t waste an inch of track. It all adds up to a commendable ride in the high thrill rather than extreme thrill category. I am giving Wicked an 8 on a scale of 1 to 10.
Final Rating – 8.0 (Great)
What’s your take? Have you ridden Wicked and if so, what did you think of it?