Kings Dominion has announced the imminent departure of Volcano:The Blast Coaster.  The link to the official statement from the park is as follows:

Photo by Bobbie Butterfield

Although this is unfortunate, it’s perfectly understandable.  Volcano was plagued with mechanical problems and experienced extended downtime over the past year or so.  I was lucky enough to be at Kings Dominion last Spring when it was operating normally.  However, it struck me as being somewhat rougher than on my previous visit, particularly during the 155-foot rollout.

Photo by Bobbie Butterfield

Volcano will be missed, as it was truly unique and highly entertaining as well as being a record-breaker.  Until Gatekeeper at Cedar Point came along, the 155- foot rollout on Volcano was the tallest inversion on a coaster.  As I said in my showdown of Volcano vs. Maverick on this site, finding myself flat on my back 155 feet in the air was one of the more memorable coaster experiences I can recall.  Plus the 2nd launch always took me by surprise. Among the Intamin multi-launch coasters I’ve ridden – the two which immediately come to mind are Maverick and Cheetah Hunt – Volcano stands out as the least predictable.  On Maverick the train enters a tunnel and comes to a halt, so you know that you’re about to be launched.. On Cheetah Hunt you know as soon as you see a hill up ahead that you’re going to be launched.  The 2nd launch on Volcano was a different story.  My reaction was always whoa, where did that come from?

21 years is not a long lifespan for a coaster but it was a good 21 years.  I’ve glad that I got to experience Volcano during my several visits to Kings Dominion.



About The Author

Hi! I took up roller coasters late in life, 8 years ago at the age of 59 and am trying to make up for lost time. Most of my favorite coasters were made by Intamin and lately, Rocky Mountain Construction. I love Hersheypark not only because it's the sweetest place on earth but because the three major coasters are Intamins. In real life I work in the legal profession.

3 Responses

  1. Dru

    This is an unpleasant surprise!
    I was just thinking the other day as I drank coffee from my Volcano mug, that I was too harsh in my comment from your last showdown post. As you stated it was very unique. I always liked the rolling launch at the start. I can’t think of another coaster that launches like that.
    I imagine kings dom will replace it with something great. That have been on a roll with I305 and twisted timbers…
    I would have bet money that Anaconda or flight of fear would have gone before Volcano.

  2. Brian MacDonald

    I’m pretty bummed about this departure. The first time I visited Kings Dominion was in 1996, before Volcano was built. The second time was last October, and Volcano wasn’t running. I thought it was a bummer, but I figured I could ride it sometime in the future. Alas, that’s not going to happen. I think Volcano just hit the top of my “coaster regrets” list, bumping down “Didn’t ride Ultra Twister when you had the chance.”

  3. Eric

    KD was always interesting in my mind, in that they’ve had a bunch of launched coasters over the years (Hypersonic XLC, Flight of Fear, Italian Job Stunt Coaster). Never got around to ride Volcano, which is probably one of my bigger “missed coaster” regrets in life. The world’s only launched full-circuit invert, and now it’s gone for good.

    My only hope is that KD bounces back and replaces it with a huge, custom flyer like Tatsu (since BGW nearby has a diver, hyper, and invert with some restrictions on what B&M can be built).


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