My first stop, of course, was The Intimidator -- to make sure that I did not lose my courage by lollygagging around the massive park. This ride was inspired by the late Dale Earnhardt, Sr., who was killed in a NASCAR race in 2001 in Daytona Beach, Florida. I must admit that at first the yards and yards of rounded steel which twists and turns many times as well as goes way up into the air is a bit intimidating. Believe me when I say this as I am a former U.S. Army Paratrooper that has completed more than 20 jumps from a perfectly good aircraft while in flight. Surprisingly the wait only took less than 25 minutes as the staff was pretty efficient in getting folks on and off of the coaster. They had these huge fans that sprayed a mist of cool water on you while in line and I thought that was way cool and thoughtful. As I approached the loading zone I could not help but to experience a slight increase in my heart rate and blood pressure, but fear was not present.
You could tell that some of those young had people done this before as they took their shoes off before boarding and knew exactly where to stand to get the best seat(s). To my dismay, and being a rookie, I was seated at the tail end of the ride and next to a kid who stated that it was his 12th time riding. Must be nice being that young again I thought. Of course, us older folks know how to get it right the first time, therefore ending the need for a return trip. For example, that young boy told me that he closed his eyes the first time so I made sure that I was going to keep mine open so as not to miss anything. Oddly, the first drop is the scariest part of the ride which goes extremely quick and smooth. My fear was compounded by the fact that I and this kid were the last two amoeba's to go over the top after literally hanging by the seats of our pants while watching the other riders climb over 200 feet
in the air.
^^^Back to Top
All in all it was quite a memorable - yet fast - experience that most young folks will indeed have to do over and over again like my new young friend. And if you go during the dog days of summer - In July
- that water mist is certainly a cool treat while waiting in line.
This year (2021) Carowinds
will open to the general public on Saturday May 22
, and the waterpark Carolina Harbor
will open the following Saturday
on May 29
. All 2020
season passes and add-on products have been extended throughout 2021
. A larger than life celebration known as Grand Carnivale
will debut from Saturday July 17
through Sunday August 1
. Also, the longest mat racing water slide in the Southeast will debut at Carolina Harbor
waterpark this season.
Carowinds continues to monitor the ever-changing conditions surrounding the COVID-19
(Coronavirus) pandemic and will continue to actively work with health experts and government officials to maintain
the highest safety standards for guests and associates. Guests are encouraged to visit www.carowinds.com
for the latest updates on requirements, policies and safety protocols for the 2021
season, as these details and guidelines may be revised.
Want to go?
Schedule a group visit here!