The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the single most-visited national park in the United States — drawing 11 million visitors each year. Now, thanks to Dollywood and Wilderness at the Smokies resort, thrill-seeking visitors will have two new reasons to visit East Tennessee.
Two new thrill rides — Dollywood’s new “Wild Eagle”, the nation’s first “wing coaster”, and the new “Wild Vortex” (which opened this week) — represent massive investments by the two largest investors in Smoky Mountain tourism.
MSNBC reported, “Scream season got off to a high-flying start when Dollywood’s Wilde Eagle raptor-themed ride took flight on March 23. The first wing coaster in the U.S., it features floorless cars in which riders sit on either side of the track, feet dangling as they fly through four inversions, including a giant loop, zero-gravity roll and giant flat spin, as they soar through the surrounding forest.
Knoxville’s WBIR television (NBC) says, “The Wild Vortex is 66 feet tall, and is a near vertical, see-through, looping waterslide.”
Just two months ago, Wilderness at the Smokies opened a dramatic expansion to its offerings with the new multi-million dollar “Adventure Forest” inddor theme park. Get more details about Adventure Forest here.
With hundreds of shows, outdoor activities for beginners to the most avid outdoor enthusiast, some of the nation’s best theme parks and attractions, and — now — two new thrill rides that are drawing national attention, the Smoky Mountains region continues to establish itself as one of the nation’s top year-round destinations for family fun.