It’s not that they made me nauseous. Some do, but that’s not the problem with the attraction rides topping the Stratosphere in Las Vegas.
And it’s not that I’m not normally a thrill ride seeker, even though I probably haven’t been on one in 10+ years before last December.
It’s the fact that I nearly lost my mind in the Stratosphere Tower. Seriously, the three attraction rides atop that particular Vegas landmark are from hell.
Well ok, maybe you can consider one of them somewhat tame, if you’re not too squeamish about heights. We saved that one for last, and it turned out to be ok despite the fact that we were cranked out over 60 feet from the safety of the ledge, tilted in our chairs so that we were facing down on the Strip from 900 feet above, and spun around pretty fast.
Thankfully, no need to vomit. And after a minute or two, it was almost fun.
That particular thrill is called Insanity – The Ride, and yeah, it was pretty insane considering all of the above factors. But to get the most bang for your thrill-seeking buck, I recommend you do Insanity first, BEFORE you lose your mind on the other rides, and are rendered mentally numb.
Big Shot is the ride that gave me heart palpitations. I didn’t really enjoy being launched 160 feet up in the air like a roman candle. I had visions of not stopping, and hurtling down 160 feet, plus the total length of the Strat, to be smashed into a million itty bitty pieces on the pavement below.
What’s the newest attraction in Vegas? Stupid Tourist Smoothie, running in chunky rivulets into the gutters. Live on Channel 7.
Yeah, it scared me. Particularly those few seconds of lag time at the top when you don’t know when you’ll be shot down again. Or back up. Nice mind game, thrill ride designers! I recommend making this thrill second of the three attraction rides on the Stratosphere.
Save X-Scream for last. This is the one that made me lose my mind. You’ll be harnessed into your seat, a coaster-like compartment hugging a rail. The rail lifts above the platform, you’re tilted down, and then mercilessly shot over the edge of the Tower.
Again, visions of not being able to stop. And more seconds of lag time to ponder stupid fate.
The Stratosphere website compares this thrill ride to a teeter-totter, but the description couldn’t possibly be any further from the truth. It absolutely SUCKED, and I’m never going anywhere near another ride like that again.
What makes this ride so much scarier than other attraction rides or hare-brained thrills I’ve ever ridden or participated in? I suspect it’s the tilting at some unknown speed not listed on the Strat’s website. Whatever the case, it was time to get off the Tower and have a cocktail…
Tip #1: You’ll be asked to stow away purses, hats, etc. in compartments before boarding these ride attractions, for very good reason. It’s all kept safe but if you’re worried about that sort of thing, have a friend who’s not riding hold your stuff.
Tip#2: The 20-somethings on the rides with us could not get enough…they laughed joyously every time I had to re-swallow my heart. I wanted to cut their legs off. But there ARE some crazy people in the world who will love these rides. Maybe you’re one of them?