When I moved to Boise almost a decade ago, I instantly fell in love with the Treasure Valley and never looked back...but there's one thing I do miss about the part of the country I grew up in.

When we talk about lottery dreams and what we would do if we ever hit a multi-million dollar jackpot, people look at me like I have horns growing out of my head when I tell them mine. Backyard roller coaster. Roller coasters are the only thing that make me home sick.  Back in the day, I lived within an hour of two great amusement parks: now defunct Geagua  Lake and Kennywood, the amusement park where they filmed 2009's Adventureland.  Drive an hour longer and you could hit the roller coaster capital of the world, Cedar Point. Living in Boise, I suffer from extreme roller coaster withdrawal and it bums me out that Lagoon's a four and half hour drive away.

As a coaster fiend, I'm surprised that I didn't know that Idaho actually had a hand in launching some of the best roller coasters in the world! There's a company based in Hayden, ID called Rocky Mountain Construction that manufactures and constructs roller coasters all over the world.  Their I-Box technology is the reason that some of the most beloved wooden roller coasters in the country are still around. It's a replacement steel track for wooden coasters.

Since they opened in 2011, there are 16 Rocky Mountain Construction coasters operating in the United States, Mexico and Sweden.  Their name is also attached to coasters under construction in Japan, the Netherlands and Poland!

One of their most recent and most celebrated coasters actually lives at my beloved Cedar Point! Designed by Hayden's Alan Schilke and manufactured by Rocky Mountain Construction, the "Steel Vengeance" coaster broke 10 world records when it opened in 2018.  Rocky Mountain Construction was able to use a big chunk of the support system from one of Cedar Point's older coasters, Mean Streak, to build the first ever "hyper-hybrid" coaster that combines a smooth steel track on top of a wooden structure.  The 205 foot tall coaster boasts almost 30 seconds of airtime where passengers feel almost weightless, more than any other coaster in the world! It also holds records for the fastest, steepest drop and number of inversions on a hybrid coaster.  It other words? It's a pretty bad@$* coaster that was conceived right here in the Gem State!

Other Rocky Mountain Construction Coasters include:

  • New Texas Giant/Six Flags Over Texas
  • Outlaw Run/Silver Dollar City
  • Iron Rattler/Six Flags Fiesta Texas
  • Medusa Steel Coaster/Six Flags Mexico
  • Goliath/Six Flags Great America
  • Twisted Colossus/Six Flags Magic Mountain
  • Wicked Cyclone/Six Flags New England
  • Wildfire/Kolmarden Sweden
  • Storm Chaser/Kentucky Kingdom
  • Lightning Rod/Dollywood
  • The Joker/Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
  • Twisted Timbers/Kings Dominion
  • Twisted Cyclone/Six Flags Over Georgia
  • Wonder Woman Golden Lasso Coaster/Six Flags Fiesta Texas
  • RailBlazer - California's Great America