Not For Weenies

In America, we have one definition of a roller coaster. For us, it’s a massive mechanical contraption with packed cars full of screaming kids on a drive chain. Goes up, comes down.

The concept is a bit different in Austria. There, a roller coaster is something else. The Austrian concept entails a rail snaking its way down a mountain with individual cars propelled by gravity and the riders completely exposed other than the presence of a seatbelt.

And a brake you can pull back on if the speed freaks you out.

Which can happen, because here’s what it looks like when you ride the Sommerrodelbahn in Mieders, Austria without pulling the brake…

Normally it’s not quite that scary. Most riders are a bit more luxurious in their trip down the mountain…

Those of us who have skied a little, though, would prefer to traverse down that hill using the appropriate apparatus when there’s snow on it. That said, it beats the roller coaster at Six Flags.

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