|Click here to watch the on-ride POV|
|Manufacturer||Rocky Mountain Construction|
|Type||Wooden - Launched - Terrain|
|Riders per train||24|
|Propulsion||LSM lift hill|
|Elevation change||206 feet|
|Top speed||73 mph|
Lightning Rod is a wooden launched roller coaster located at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, USA. Opened on June 13, 2016, the ride is the world's first launched wooden coaster and the world's fastest wooden coaster. It is also a prototype launched Topper Track coaster by Rocky Mountain Construction.
Lightning Rod was revealed at an event featuring Dolly Parton on August 7, 2015. Shortly before the attraction's scheduled March 19, 2016 opening, the attraction was announced as delayed due to launch problems. It started technical rehearsals with guests on May 23, 2016 before officially opening on June 13. Since then, the ride has had many technical problems due to its unique launch system.
In July 2018, Lightning Rod was shut down for an extended period of time. The ride reopened on October 10 after changes were made to the lead car.
In September 2020, Lightning Rod was closed for the remainder of the year. The following month during a question-and-answer session at an enthusiasts' event, a park representative revealed that some of Lightning Rod's track would be replaced with steel I-Box Track in an attempt to improve its reliability. The layout was not changed. In total, 2,160 feet of the ride's track was replaced with IBox Track during the refurbishment. The ride reopened for the first time with the new IBox Track on March 12, 2021.
The trains are based on hot rods.
- Niles, Robert (June 13, 2016). "Lightning Rod opens officially at Dollywood". Theme Park Insider. https://www.themeparkinsider.com/flume/201606/5108/. Retrieved November 23, 2020.
- "Lightning Rod Reopens at Dollywood After Months of Downtime". Coaster101. October 11, 2018. https://www.coaster101.com/2018/10/11/lightning-rod-reopens-at-dollywood-after-months-of-downtime/. Retrieved May 25, 2021.
- "Lightning Rod at Dollywood Receiving New Track in 2021". Coaster101. November 16, 2020. https://www.coaster101.com/2020/11/15/lightning-rod-dollywood-retracking-2021/. Retrieved November 23, 2020.
- Ozana, Rus (November 14, 2020). "Lightning Rod Update". American Coaster Enthusiasts. https://www.aceonline.org/news/539176/Lightning-Rod-Update-.htm. Retrieved November 23, 2020.
- on the Roller Coaster DataBase.
|Fastest wooden roller coaster|
June 13, 2016 - present
|Fastest wooden roller coaster
June 13, 2016 - present