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Timber Ripper at Okemo - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Timber Ripper at Okemo

Ludlow, Vermont -- January 17, 2012

Old Man Winter may have been late to arrive in Vermont this year, but that hasn't stopped the crowds from visiting Okemo Resort.

There's a new way to slide down the slopes at Okemo. In fact, you actually don't need any snow at all.

From a distance, this looks like a Vermont ski resort.

But up close? It looks and sounds more like an amusement park.

"This is the funnest thing on Okemo Mountain," says Deb Tiernan with Okemo Resort.

It's called the Timber Ripper.

And during a snow strapped winter like this one, it's a resort's saving grace.

"More and more parks are getting stuff like this and it's good to have. Families come and the kids get tired and there's this," says one guest.

"I've been having dreams of going on this actually. Apparently I was sleep talking one night," says another.

Unlike a traditional roller coaster, you get to control your speed on this wild ride.

The challenge -- is to just let her rip.

"I think you can do it. You'll scream like a little girl but it will be fun," says Bonnie MacPherson with Okemo Resort.

The ride starts easy enough.... For the first four minutes all one has to do is sit back, relax, and take in the scenery.

But any sense of calm quickly vanishes once you reach the point of no return.... A 370-foot doomsday-like climb to the top... before you start to drop.

"That's what I tell them. It's 85 mph and we're only lost two people today," Tiernan jokes.

The good news is, it looks worse than it is. From start to finish you never feel like you're being dumped out of a plane.

"I always tell people don't get scared. It's not like a shoot-down roller coaster," Tiernan says.

And even if you don't use the brakes -- you can never exceed 28 miles an hour.

But trust me, 28 miles an hour IS faster than it sounds.

It's a new way to slide down the slopes, and guaranteed fun no matter the conditions.

Vermont's only mountain coaster and a true mountain gem.

From start to finish a ride lasts about 6 or 7 minutes. A one time trip costs 13 dollars.

Click here for more information on the Timber Ripper.

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