Colorado Adventure: Crossing the Line, Maybe

The final section of Colorado Adventure

The mine train that crosses the line between “family” and “extreme”….

Phantasialand, Germany- July 19, 2019

I am pretty sure everyone around here is familiar with mine trains- long rides, multiple lift hills, lots of turns but nothing very thrilling about them. With Colorado Adventure, this is not the case. You will be surprised by how forceful this thing is, and don’t be fooled by its height!

Before my visit to Phantasialand, I had already seen videos of this ride. The coaster looked like it had potential to be the greatest mine train ever built, and boy was I correct! Since Colorado Adventure is a mine train, it is meant to be a family coaster. In all honesty, It does not feel like one. You’ll see why later on. To start this review, let’s talk about the theming on this coaster.

Theming: 4.5/10

As you might have seen in the picture above, there is some rockwork on this coaster, especially on that last section. There are also a bunch of tunnels which did add to the “Colorado” part of Colorado Adventure, but other than that there was not much else. There is nice centerpiece inside the final helix, but I was a bit disappointed that the queue looked more like one that could be found at a Cedar Fair or Six Flags park. Also one thing that I find very weird is that the first half of the ride is inside this semi-enclosed unfinished structure thing. Apparently this was done for noise reduction purposes, but they could have at least put some theming in there. In comparison to Black Mamba, which is right behind, the level of theming on this coaster is little to none. Don’t get me wrong here, theming (or lack of) is not necessarily one of the most important factors that I consider when reviewing roller coasters.

Operations and Efficiency: 5/5

Just like all the other coasters in the park, dispatch times for Colorado adventure are pretty consistent and very quick. I have noticed that in parks in the USA, coasters with long trains usually have slower operations. Colorado adventure has at least twenty rows in each train. Regardless, dispatch times were always at around half a minute. The coaster was running at least three trains (or maybe more). Thanks to the skilled ride operators, Colorado Adventure was always a walk-on!

Another thing to take note is entering the ride. To get to the actual entrance, you will have to walk a bit and go around the back of the station. It is a bit inconvenient that this coaster is not that easy to get to, but oh well.

Trains and Restraints: 3.5/5

The trains on Colorado Adventure are decently comfortable. The lap bar allows you to get lots of wiggle room and airtime. My only complaint is that the seats felt a bit cramped, but this wasn’t much of an issue.

Smoothness: 8/10

Of all the mine trains I have ridden, Colorado Adventure is definitely the smoothest. There is a slight rattle towards the end, but the majority of the ride was nowhere near as rattly as some of the other ones I have ridden.

Layout: 10/10

Like most mine trains, Colorado Adventure is comprised of more than one section. There are three individual lift hills, and the ride does different things after each of them. Colorado Adventure has a customised layout that is far better than the cloned ones in most parks. The first lift hill takes you over the midway before leading into the first section of the ride, which is inside that structure I already talked about. You then go up the second lift, where you will be greeted by Chiapas before plunging into complete darkness. I am not entirely sure what the coaster does in here, but there are a few big drops. The last half of the ride starts with a downward helix, going into some large drops and then another helix to finish the journey. It is a fantastic layout for this type of coaster and undoubtedly provides an intense experience.

Intensity and Fun Factor: 8.5/10

The intensity of this coaster is perhaps the thing that surprised me the most. While the first section is a bit tame, the section following that is absolutely insane! Because it is in complete darkness, the ride feels faster than it actually is. There are some pretty big unexpected drops that will get to you by surprise. If you are sitting in the front it is particularly scary. During the last section, you will get whipped into the first helix if you are in the back! The drops and airtime hills following this helix provide very strong airtime in the back cars, and the final helix is the most intense one I have experienced on a mine train. I actually greyed out every time on this helix! I never thought a so-called “family coaster” would be that intense but I was wrong!

Score Breakdown
Category Score
Operations and Efficiency 5
Trains and Restraints3.5
Intensity and Fun Factor8.5
Total (max 50 pts)39.5

For what is meant to be a family coaster, this high score is really impressive. For my personal score I am giving Colorado Adventure a 9/10. Usually a score like this would go to an extreme roller coaster with inversions or lots of airtime, but with its fantastic thrilling layout, Colorado Adventure is an exception.

video credit: World of Parks TV

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