It was a tight envelope, but I managed to make it up to opening weekend at Knoebels and get a lap on Knoebels’ newest and first steel coaster in over a decade: Impulse. It didn’t disappoint and was a very enjoyable ride! If you want to be surprised, skip over the next few paragraphs and go right to the photos!
After entering under the brake run, you walk behind the machine room for the ride as it towers all around you. While it still needs a little work, you enter the main queue area, that is set up similar to Fahrenheit (ride area off to the right, station on the left with two sets of stairs leading to the station (future single rider line?), and base of the lift straight ahead. While it may seem familiar to that Intamin coaster 50-some miles to the south, that is where it ends.
Once in the station, an employee groups you into your rows for the car. Once the gates open, you just hand your loose items to the attendant, take your seat, and pull back on your lap restraint, which is pretty beefy and comes with shin bars. Think of it as a souped-up Skyrush lapbar that covers your entire lap.
Once your car is all-clear, you are dispatched to the front of the station where you wait for the other one in front of you to enter the final helix. Once ready, the car creeps slowly around the first turn to the base of the lift. Unlike Fahrenheit, your car automatically engages the lift and pulls you straight up to 98-feet.
That view of the blue sky within seconds turns to ground as the car starts to rocket down the vertical drop. You are suddenly town out of your seat with some airtime. Upon reaching the top-speed of over 55 mph, you curve into the cobra roll inversion, which is a little looser than others and you experience your first section of positive g-forces and hang time at the top of the inversion sections.
Next, you enter a brief straight section of track that transports you to the vertical loop element, where you experience more positive g-forces at the base and hang time at the peak. Next is a banked turn over the queue line and a helix that circles the lift. Following up is one of my favorite parts of the ride: the heartline roll.
Think of it as a faster version of Hydra’s mojo-roll at Dorney Park and you get this twist that threads right through the vertical loop. You are literally out of your seat the entire time! To conclude your thrilling experience, you enter the helix finale where there is one last dose of positive g-forces waiting for you and into the magnetic brakes that bring you to a sudden, but gentile stop.
In conclusion, Impulse is a great addition to the Knoebels coaster line-up. While it might not have the airtime of Phoenix, the lateral forces of Twister, or the nostalgia of Flying Turns, it does have hang time, positive g-forces and inversions on today’s modern scream machines. It is a coaster that will make you ride it again and again!
Thanks for reading!