Branson’s Mountain Coaster: The Runaway
Imagine gliding through a scenic, wooded hillside on twisting, turning, smooth-as-glass steel track. You’ll find this trilling adventure at The Runaway Mountain Coaster, Branson’s newest attraction.
Our family has ridden alpine sleds in other locations (including the one near Mount Rushmore), so we were expecting The Runaway to be very similar. It is similar in that you are gliding down a hillside in a cart that has brakes, allowing you to control your speed. However, The Runaway is much more of a thrill ride than those, with an elevated twisting track offering some fun twists and turns along the hillside.
The Runaway is located just off the Highway 76 Strip in Branson. Visitors will first stop at the building to sign consent forms and purchase tickets. Tickets cost $15 per driver and $10 per rider, with discounts available for repeat rides on the same day.
To drive a cart, you have to be at least 9 years old and 52 inches tall. To ride in a cart, you have to be at least 3 years old and 36 inches tall. There are other safety requirements to read and consider. As always, my younger son wanted a handstand photo:
On the day we visited, we had a short line to wait in for our cart. Since The Runaway was less than a month old at the time, I suspect that line will be much longer as word about the attraction spreads. As you wait, you can see the carts heading up and down the hillside.
Soon enough, it was time to load our carts after a quick review of the rules and operations.
At other alpine sleds we’ve ridden, we rode to the top of the hill in a ski lift. The Runaway works differently. Here, carts are slowly pulled to the top of the hill, offering riders a calm 5-minute trip through the beautiful woodlands as your anticipation builds.
I appreciated that they kept as much of the foliage as possible, allowing the natural environment to add to the experience. As beautiful as this trip was in September, I think you should consider a trip in autumn. When this hillside explodes in color, it will be quite a site to see.
As I was approaching the top, I caught a glimpse of my younger son as he began his descent down. Wheeee!
After making a turn at the top of the hill, my cart was now controlled by the gravitational force of the hillside. It didn’t take long to pick up speed along the smooth steel track.
This easy ride soon became quite thrilling. The steel track is very similar to a roller coaster track, hence the name “mountain coaster.” There are small hills to bump along and two elevated 360 degree corkscrews. It’s definitely exhilarating!
As the cart heads down the hillside, it begins to pick up speeds of up to 30 mph. I have to admit, I applied my brakes as I zipped along some of the corners. At some points, the cart is fairly high off the ground, adding to the thrill. My younger son said this made his stomach do a little flip.
The carts have built-in braking technology to prevent faster riders from crashing into slower riders. My husband came up a little too fast and close to our younger son, and the mechanism stopped his cart very quickly.
All too soon, we arrived at the bottom. We emerged from our carts with huge grins and compared our reviews. That was a fun ride!
The Runaway is a great addition to the already-packed list of Branson attractions. It is a unique experience, unlike any other in the area. It takes advantage of the natural beauty and adds a thrilling twist.
When traveling with teens and tweens, it can sometimes be difficult to find activities that are fun for them. This is a perfect attraction for kids who want to do something a little more adventurous. Our 11 and 14-year-old sons both had fun and found The Runaway to be even more exciting than they had even anticipated.
Younger kids will also enjoy the ride, but I think some children could find it a little bit scary. You’ll have to judge whether your child enjoys thrill rides or not. This is less scary than a theme park roller coaster, but definitely more adventurous than an alpine slide. If you have Grandma and Grandpa along on your trip, this is an attraction they can enjoy with the grandkids, too.
Overall, this is a fun, family-friendly attraction offering a unique thrill in a natural Branson landscape.
Just the Facts
Name & Website: The Runaway Branson Mountain Coaster
Location: Branson, MO
Cost: $15 for drivers, $10 for riders (plus tax)
Age Limits: Must be 9 and up to drive. Must be 16 to drive with another rider. Must be at least 3 to ride. There are also height and weight requirements.
Final Thoughts: Thrilling, scenic family adventure!
P.S. If you are coming to the RVFTA Midwest Fall Rally, I recommend putting this attraction on your list!Share this post:
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