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When Dollywood announced their newest roller coaster in August 2022, it was a very exciting time! They announced this family coaster suitable for younger adventurers as well as plans to build the Heartsong Lodge. It is located on the border of Wildwood Grove, the newest expansion of Dollywood. This newest addition is the largest single attraction investment and is sure to make a lot of memories for visitors to the park.

construction behind a fence with the big bear mountain logo
Construction is underway at the park!

As of December 2022, construction has begun and we were able to sneak a peek on our last visit. Today we are here to share the pics of the progress and tell you everything you need to know to get excited for the new roller coaster!

Right now Dollywood guests can see construction of this gigantic coaster is already underway with bright orange track visible from many areas of the park, especially when riding the Dollywood Express. The new coaster is from ride manufacturer Vekoma and has an anticipated opening date of Spring 2023.

Let’s just be clear: this ride is going to be an exciting ride for the adults and kiddos! The ride is centered around finding the Big Bear, hence the name. This new ride is packed with details that Dollywood fans are eager to hear about. So without further ado, here it is!

sections of track for big bear mountain seen in Wildwood Grove
Sections of orange track can be seen all over Wildwood Grove and from some of the taller rides!

This notable ride is going to be huge. So big, in fact, that when completed will be the longest coaster in Dollywood! The track in full length will measure 3,990 feet! Each train can hold twenty people. The entrance will be an added sidewalk and patio behind the Dragonflier entrance. From there, the track will make a loop-esk all the way to behind the Till and Harvest Food Hall in the footprint of Wildwood Grove.

Ride Experience

The Big Bear Mountain Coaster is the first of its kind at Dollywood! Join Ned Oakley, Wildwood Grove’s resident wilderness explorer, on an unforgettable expedition to find the legendary bear: Big Bear. Start at the Adventure Outpost Base Camp and search the Smoky Mountains behind Hidden Hollow for this elusive massive black bear.

Twenty riders at a time will go for the rides of their lives on ride vehicles that look like four-wheel drive suvs as you embark on a 99-104 second ride! That’s 1 min 39 sec to 1 min 44 sec.

There is on-board audio with music and announcements. You will also go through a cave-like structure about halfway through the ride.

You will experience speeds up to 48 mph, and go up to 66 feet in the air with plenty of thrilling moments along the way. There will be three separate launches that send riders racing through airtime hills and high-speed carousel turns as they enjoy the onboard audio and auditory thrills from Ned as they search for Big Bear.

See our guide to all the Dollywood roller coasters here!

Ride Specs

Top Speed: 48 mph

Track Height: 66 feet

Minimum Height Requirement: 39″ (same as the Dragonflier and FireChaser Express)

Length of Track: 3990

Ride Time: 99-104 seconds

First Person Perspective Rendering of Rollercoaster (Video)

This video is what they expect the newest attraction to be like, so follow along as you experience all the thrills of the largest coaster in the park!

Final Thoughts on Big Bear Mountain in Dollywood

Personally, we can’t wait to ride the Big Bear Mountain roller coaster when it opens. With such a low minimum height to ride, our entire family can ride the new attraction when we visit. We get season passes, which are a wonderful value if you are going to the park more than three days, and I highly recommend them if you will be in town for a while or are coming back for multiple trips like we do.

Finally, if you would like to see the pictures , which have not yet been released to the public, you need to visit the Dollywood Webpage.

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