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Specific Type: Suspended Coaster
It seems as if every ancient culture has a legendary creature that fly’s and breaths the heat of death: the dragon. From Europe to Asia, people believed that the mystical creature could come one day and could give either good luck or bad luck. The tradition of telling these myths dates back thousands of years and now, almost everyone knows the stories of the dragon.
However, there's been no dragon sightings, or any legend for that matter in the United States. Nobody cared about these stories and the cultures behind them. Also, a dragon hasn't been claimed to be seen for a long time, and a new dragon legends hasn't been made up for hundreds of years. It seemed that the dragon had become dead in our society.
However, there was a saving grace for the beast. The Ohio Park Cedar Point and the Utah coaster company Arrow Dynamics, the company contracted to design a new coaster, wanted a coaster. They wanted one that will take guests flying through the woods whiles experiencing the thrills of a roller coaster. Cedar Point decided to revive the dragon theme as it seemed perfect for the Points new coaster. The ride was called Iron Dragon as it seemed the new legend was born.
Guests to Cedar Point who want to ride Iron Dragon must walk through the famed concrete midway. There, they can walk under the famed corkscrews of the Corkscrew , play some of the games, or have something to eat. The Cedar Point visitors then walk along the lake, seeing the twisted mess that they are soon going to fly through.
After the treacherous switchback queue line, the riders board the ride, ready the feel the wrath of the Iron Dragon. The operator dispatches and the dragon heads out and does its usual flight sequence. The dragon slow grabs on a chain that goes upwards, giving guest a chance to relax as they prepare for the best (or worst). Once atop the 76ft lift, the riders take one final breath before the excitement begins. The train is released from the chain and plunges down the first drop missing the supports as it goes. It is followed by a fast, upward, left turn, nearly hitting the trees as they go. As they see the giant Mantis the back round, the dragon takes a turn right, while just missing the lift hill of Mantis. Next up is a slightly downward S-bend with a fast down-up curve at the end. Next up is a 270 degree helix, where riders can get a good view of the Top Thrill Dragster. The dragon then hits the breaks and heads up the second lift hill. Once released from the 69ft lift, the riders go down an exciting fast S-bend, yet again missing the trees and supports as it goes. Then, the dragon swoops down a right turning drop into the mist and final helix. Once escaping the mist, the dragon does one final S-bend into the breaks.
Iron Dragon has changed a lot over the past 20 years. At first, it was a terrain ride through the woods and over the lakes. Nowadays, the Dragon has lost its old silver and red paint job in favor of a yellow and red paint job. Also, some of the trees have to torn down and some lakes have been dried in favor of Top Thrill Dragster and Mantis. Nether less, the 36 million riders that rode the dragon over the last 20 years enjoyed the flying sensation no other Cedar Point ride has to offer. By Stephen McCarthy