The Need For Speed

Posted by Phil Rodgers in Things to Do

In the classic '80s movie Top Gun, lead characters Maverick and Goose famously said, “I feel the need, the need for speed!” In their case, that meant hopping into the cockpit of a fighter jet. However, the next time you're on vacation in the Great Smoky Mountains, we'd like to suggest a mode of transportation that will allow you to move along at a good clip but is also much less risky: go-carts.

Race at Blake Jones for family fun.

Go-carts have been a familiar site on the Smoky Mountain scene for decades-and for good reason. They're a great way to let you inner speed demon come out, but they're also a safe way to tear it up on the track, whether you're flooring it in the straightaways or hugging the inside of a hairpin turn. In either case, it's just you and your machine competing against the other drivers. Or maybe you're just out to beat your personal best time on the track.

If this sounds like your idea of a fun day in the mountains, we've got a few recommendations for Pigeon Forge destinations where go-carts are the main attraction. We'll start out at Fast Tracks, which is located on the Parkway. There, you'll find three different tracks: the Pro Track, the three-story Elevated Track and the 8 Track. Each offers a different racing experience, and they also have a variety of different go-cart machines that are designed to accommodate a wide range of customer ages, sizes and skill levels. Naskart racers, skid racers and junior racers are among the selections.

In addition to the racetracks, Fast Tracks offers amusements like miniature golf, bumper boats, kiddie rides, bungee jumping and an arcade. There's also the Sky Scraper thrill ride that stands 150 feet tall.

Fun stop is really a fun stop for families.

Another Pigeon Forge pit stop to get your racing fix would be FunStop Family Action Park. FunStop also has three tracks to choose from: Elevated Track, Sleek Track and Pro Track. Single cars cost $10 per ride or $20 for three rides. Double cars are $15 per ride or $30 for three.

FunStop has other family activities too, including the Slingshot bungee ride (which shoots passengers 120 feet into the air), the pendulum-like Skyscraper ride, and the Soaring Eagle Zipline ride.

Finally, you might also consider Blake Jones Racing Center when you're ready for the rubber to hit the road. Like Fast Tracks and FunStop, Blake Jones Racing Center is located on the Parkway, in the heart of Pigeon Forge. They offer three different race experiences­-a figure-eight slick track, electric go-carts and bumper cars. The slick track is one of the few covered figure-eight tracks in the area, and this location has the area's only indoor electric go-carts.

No matter where you race, however, keep in mind the go-carts are not bumper cars. Bumper cars are designed and cushioned for impact. Go-carts are not. At each location, you'll see signs posted cautioning against bumping. For your safety and everyone else's, we recommend that you follow those guidelines.

The Goat Coaster is pretty speedy.

Of course, we offer a pretty speedy experience here at Goats On The Roof, and we're also in Pigeon Forge, just a short drive off the main Parkway on Wears Valley Road. Our Goat Coaster is one of our most popular attractions at Goats On The Roof (besides the goats themselves). This alpine coaster measures 4,875 feet in length-nearly a mile-and, depending on the number and size and weight of the passengers-it can reach speeds of nearly 30 miles per hour.

However, as the driver of the coaster car, you control how fast you go. You'll have your hands on the brake lever the whole time, so if that next hairpin turn seems too daring for you, just pull back on the brake to slow down. If you're game for a little more speed in a straight section, let up on the brake and let gravity do its thing.


This content posted by Goats on the Roof of the Smoky Mountains. Visit our home page, goatsontheroofofthesmokies.com for more information on the goats and their coaster.

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