Year after year Boulder Dash receives acclaim from numerous websites, enthusiasts, and magazines as one of the best wooden coasters. The hype certainly is there. Even Lake Compounce knows it and displays the ride's impressive honors at the ride's entrance. But as with all world-renowned coasters, does it live up to the hype? Simply put, yes.
Let me start off by saying that this is easily one of the most picturesque coasters on the planet. The way that the ride carves the mountainside dodging trees and boulders is just breathtaking. The ride works the mountainside so well that it's first half is a mystery no matter how many times I ride, and it's an out-and-back coaster! That really says something about how well hidden the layout is from view.
Lines for this usually are on the short side, rarely exceeding 20 minutes for any seat. I find the back and front about equal in terms of ride, but the front is better simply because of the incredible view offered as the ride flies through the woods.
Boulder Dash begins with a tranquil climb up the mountain and is followed by a slow turn. The ride then flies down the first drop, gaining an incredible amount of speed. Following that are two rather large hills. Unfortunately none of those three hills delivered air-time like I had hoped for, but after that the ride flat out delivers, launching me skyward every single hill that follows. The first half had many changes in direction and was really out-of-control, delivering nice floater air along with decent laterals thanks to the immense speed, but the ride just becomes even better during the second half.
While the first half is good, the second half is incredible. Once flying around the lateral-filled turnaround, Boulder Dash just seems to kick it into high gear, flying so gracefully over the many bunny hills during the return leg, each providing very good air. It really is true coaster bliss for an enthusiast. The second half just is incredible and heck I think the ride even accelerates during the return leg. I especially loved that double up hill since that was a new element compared to my previous rides.
Boulder Dash really is a world-class coaster, combining a great setting, a relentless pace, copious air, and laterals all in one package. But how does it stack up to other coasters? Well it’s excellent, but there are a few minor gripes that keep it firmly at number three on my list of best woodies. One, the ride only has one major drop and I really wish it had at least one more. Two, I just really would have liked air during the first three hills. Despite this, Boulder Dash still is a great wooden coaster and definitely one of the best because of the incredible setting, air, and intensity it provides ride after ride.