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The Wild One

Six Flags America

Historic wooden rollercoaster first built by Dinn Corporation in 1917...

Theme ParkSix Flags America
Park AreaMardi Gras
TypeWooden Rollercoaster
AudienceThrillseekers
Opened1986
ManufacturerPhiladelphia Toboggan Company (1917 version)
Dinn Corporation (Wild World relocation)
Height98 ft
Length4000 ft
Inversions0
Max Speed60 mph
DesignerJohn A Miller (original)
Herbert Schmeck (1932 redesign)
John C Allen (1963 rebuild)
Charlie Dinn (1985 reconstruction)
Duration2 minutes
ExtrasThe Flash Pass
A train navigates The Wild One's double helix finale

A train navigates The Wild One's double helix finale

The Wild One is a historic wooden rollercoaster built in 1917, which was moved to Six Flags America in 1986.

The woodie originally operated at Paragon Park in Massachusetts as Giant Coaster until the park closed in 1984. When it opened, it was the tallest rollercoaster in the world.

For a rollercoaster that is over 100 years old, The Wild One is still a thrilling ride, if a little rough in places. It creaks and twists exactly like an old woodie should. The trains fly over the hills of its out-and-back layout. But The Wild One saves the best moment until last: a spectacular 540° double helix finale that spirals down towards the brake run.

The Wild One was originally designed as "Giant Coaster" by the legendary rollercoaster designer John A Miller, who at the time was working for Philadelphia Toboggan Company. After suffering a fire in 1932 the rollercoaster was substantially redesigned by Herbert Schmeck, only to have its final double helix finale destroyed by a further fire a year later. It proved too expensive for Paragon Park to afford to restore the helix, so John Allen of PTC was brought in to rebuild it as a simple final approach into the brake run.

Paragon Park closed in 1984 and, after a winning auction bid, Giant Coaster was sold to Wild World (as Six Flags America was known at the time). Wild World brought in Charlie Dinn and his company Dinn Corporation to ship the ride to Maryland on twelve trucks and rebuild the ride. However, they also took the opportunity to have the coaster rebuilt with John Miller's classic double helix finale. Giant Coaster's blueprints had been lost years before, so Charlie had to reconstruct the layout with just an old postcard to guide his design which added 700ft to the previous version of the ride.

The rebuilt rollercoaster opened as The Wild One at Wild World in time for the 1986 season, as an almost brand new coaster having had 75% of its original timber replaced. It was estimated to have cost $1 million to move the coaster to Wild World, including the $28,000 auction bid. The relocation created huge amounts of publicity for the park and contributed to a 12% attendance increase during its opening year.

After celebrating its centenary in 2017, The Wild One continues its reputation as a world class ride. American Coaster Enthusiasts awarded it their Roller Coaster Landmark award in 2018. It remains one of the best rides at Six Flags America.

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