California Screamin is an Intamin looping coaster located at Disney California Adventure. It is the longest coaster in the world to have an inversion (6072 feet long), and you are on the ride for almost 3 minutes. It is often overlooked, but is one of my top coasters. Why? Read on!
The ride’s entrance is a pretty small sign saying California Screamin. It’s pretty unimpresssive, but it doesn’t need some huge sign to lure people in. The coaster goes through pretty much every part of Paradise Pier, so no matter where you stand, there’s probably one of the 6 trains this coaster runs rushing by you. And the integration of the launch track into the entrance of Paradise Pier is very well done. So the ride doesn’t really need some big sign, in my opinion.
How could you not get on Screamin’ after seeing this?
The line is a switchback queue. Nothing impressive, very little theming besides the design of the building. What is impressive, is how fast it moves. Did I mention that this coaster has a double loading station AND can run 6 trains? And Disney does this WITH NO STACKING. Talk about impressive.
So while this coaster has little theming in the line or on the ride (it does have a great soundtrack timed to the elements), I still think it’s one of the best themed coasters out there. Why? The way Disney themed Paradise Pier and this ride around each other is amazing. Paradise Pier is one of the best themed areas in the park, mainly because the ambience of this coaster roaring through it. And talk about the structure! While this ride might look like a wooden coaster or hybrid, it’s actually all steel. I love how Disney went so far in making this look like an old fashioned wooden coaster to fit it with the old timey boardwalk theme. So yeah, this coaster has more theming than you think.
The ride starts out with a quick turn from the station and stops briefly on the launch track. The voice says “Not ready? Too bad! Head back, face forward, and hold on like you mean it!”
There’s me above!
Then the countdown begins. “5..4..3..2..1..SCREAM!” The launch accelerates you from 0-55 MPH in 4 seconds. It’s not the best launch, but it’s far from the worst and has some pretty decent forces.
You then will soar up into a huge airtime hill…that has some really good floater. It totally took my by surprise the first time I rode it. What’s not to love?
After you’ll go into the first of four MCBR’s. Now, while it does have a lot of the MCBR’s, they do help the ride run at an extremely high capacity which shortens lines, and is essential at a Disney park due to the crowds. So, would you rather have short breaks in the coaster or wait for 1+ hours. I’ll take the MRBR’s. And also, you whip in and out of them (they don’t really slow you down at all, just there to prevent cars crashing into each other if one stalls) so at least they’re somewhat exciting.
Now, into the helix. It’s not the greatest helix, but it fits in nicely with the ride:
It does transition into a very steep and fun overbank though. The overbank is behind buildings, so here’s my best photo of it:
You’ll then hit the LSM lift hill, which is 108 feet tall (not the highest, but it is Disney) and provides a beautiful view of the park. I’m all about those lift hill views.
Then the drop! While it’s not super tall or steep, it’s super fun! Just the whole atmosphere of the coaster and the soundtrack make some of these not as impressive maneuvers a lot more fun. And you get some awesome airtime being flung over the top in the back. And speaking of the back, you get SO MUCH AIRTIME in it! Every small dip and drop is just magnified in the back (when compared to the front). So this is totally a backseat coaster.
Next up you are flung into a pretty steeply banked helix. Very fun.
Next up is the ride’s signature element, the vertical loop. You fly down a small dip from the helix leading up to the loop (airtime) and then soar through the loop. You hit this loop hard and fast. It’s insanely forceful and super fun. On one ride in the back (which you are just yanked through the loop in) I heard the people in front of us yelling that they “blacked out”. So this loop can make the GP grey out. Not bad at all.
Next up: a MRBR. Yay? But it does have an airtime filled drop into the next helix.
The next helix is very fun. It kinda goes up and down and the banking changes throughout. Creates a more dynamic experience than a normal helix. I approve.
Next up is the bunny hop section. 3 bunny hops + Intamin. Surprisingly, the airtime was pretty weak. But nonetheless, airtime is airtime, and the soundtrack that plays during this part is great.
Then you hit the last MCBR. You dive down into the best and most forceful helix of the ride, which is pretty good considering this ride has 4 helixes. It provides a fun conclusion to the super long ride. Sorry about the bad picture.
Finally the brakes, which are fun in which you stop in probably about a second. You slam into them.
Back into the station:
Link to POV on my channel: POV
Link to offride footage: Footage
In case you can’t tell, this ride is in my top tier of coasters. It’s just so much fun and it’s very long. It’s also super smooth and re-rideable. So it might not the the most thrilling, but it more than makes up for that. That is why, California Screamin’ earns…the Zombieface Coasters Seal Of Approval!
What are your thoughts on this coaster? Did you like or dislike it? Let me know the comments! And, make sure to check in often to catch the latest content!