Lightning Rod

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Lightning Rod
Lightning Rod Entrance.jpg
Location Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, USA
Status Operating since June 13, 2016
Cost $22,000,000 USD
Manufacturer Rocky Mountain Construction
Type Wooden - Launched - Terrain
Product Topper Track
Riders per train 24
Propulsion LSM lift hill
Height 80 feet
Elevation change 206 feet
Drop 165 feet
Top speed 73 mph
Length 3800 feet
Inversions 0
Angle 73°

Lightning Rod is a wooden launched roller coaster located at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, USA. It 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.


The roller coaster was revealed at an event featuring Dolly Parton on August 7, 2015. Shortly before the attraction's scheduled March 19 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.[1] Since then, the ride has had many technical problems due to its unique launch system.

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 will not be changed.[2][3]




6 cars per train. In each car, riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 24 riders per train.

The trains are based on hot rods.


Fastest wooden roller coaster
June 13, 2016 - present
Preceded by
Fastest wooden roller coaster
June 13, 2016 - present
Succeeded by


  1. Niles, Robert (June 13, 2016). "Lightning Rod opens officially at Dollywood". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved November 23, 2020. 
  2. "Lightning Rod at Dollywood Receiving New Track in 2021". Coaster101. November 16, 2020. Retrieved November 23, 2020. 
  3. Ozana, Rus (November 14, 2020). "Lightning Rod Update". American Coaster Enthusiasts. Retrieved November 23, 2020. 

External links