Young themepark enthusiasts

exploring the world

Linnanmäki: The beast named Taiga



Linnanmäki is the city theme park of Helsinki. The park opened in 1950 and has approximately 1 million visitors per year. It is very easy to reach when you are in downtown Helsinki, it is just a short ride with the tram or bus. Built on a hill the park provides a nice view of the city and the surroundings, and most important: the park is free to visit! You only pay per attraction or you can buy a wristband. There is no charge when you want to visit the park with not riding any attraction. It is almost impossible that you won't want to ride any rollercoaster. Till this year the park had already an impressive coaster line-up of 7 rollercoasters. But this year the 8th and best rollercoaster opened in the park: Taiga!




So lets talk a bit more about Taiga. Taiga is an Intamin Blitz Coaster. Blitz coaster are often big coasters, with great heights, speed and lengths. The first Blitz coaster was maverick in Cedar Point in 2007. Since that time 8th Blitz coasters have opened with Taiga as last one.
Taiga definitely makes part of the Blitz family with a top speed of 106 km/h, 52 meters high, 4 inversions and a length of 1104 meters. The coaster has 2 LSM launches, which means: Linear Synchronous Motor, a form of magnetic-electric propulsion.


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Lets have a close look at the ride itself: Directly after leaving the station you have the first launch, launching you at a speed of approximately 60-70 km/h (that is me guessing). Immediately the first inversion is encountered which is a Zero-G Winder. A unique element and the first Intamin coaster where this can be found.




Followed by twist and turns with quite some positive g-forces. For me the most intense part of the layout when you speak of these forces. Then it is time for the second launch, launching you to the top speed of 106 km/h followed by a 52 meters high top hat which unfortunate lacks ejector airtime. Still the moment of the second launch is amazing. You can compare this launch with Taron in Phantasialand, only just a bit less powerful because the maximum speed is lower than it's counterpart in Germany.








After leaving the top hat, the most amazing element of the whole ride is finally there: THE STALL. This element was first introduced on Goliath in Six Flags over Texas, and find its way all over the world since 2014. This element really feels like flying upside down and is definitely my favourite element in a rollercoaster!










Followed by the stall is a small airtime hill with really nice negative g-forces. When you are still enjoying the airtime you are smashed in the next inversion: the immelmann. Did you know this element is named after Max Immelmann: a German aerial combat soldier in world war one? It was a manoeuvre used after an attack on another aircraft to reposition the attacking aircraft for another attack. After this 'element of history' you have again twist and turns where you will be thrown out of you seat! left-right-left, you don't know which way you are going! Finishing with an inline twist you are back in the brakes after 1104 meters of awesomeness!







Conclusion


Taiga is everything I hoped for and more. It is really intense, the inversions are unique and it has awesome twist, turns, and launches. This is the addition Linnanmäki really needed: a world class coaster. When you are visiting Helsinki it would be a real shame if you don't take the time to ride this monster. Honestly for me this is one of the best coaster I have ever ridden, and it is even better than it's brother Taron in Phantasialand. So one more time: Go to Finland, go to Helsinki and definitely go to Linnanmäki!


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