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Busch Gardens Tampa – Congo: Kumba


Rating: * * * * *
Type: Steel roller coaster
Time: Just under 3 minutes
Short Take: Yet another superb roller coaster

Once, Kumba was Busch Gardens' blockbuster ride. It's since been overshadowed by Montu and SheiKra, but it's still pretty amazing and is the largest of its kind in the southeastern United States. Kumba means "roar" in a Congolese dialect, the PR people say, and it's well named.

 

Riders are braced with shoulder restraints into 32-seat vehicles (eight rows, four abreast) that roar along almost 4,000 feet of blue steel track that winds up, around, over, and through the surrounding scenery. There are loops, camelbacks, and corkscrews to terrify or thrill you, as the case may be. One of the more disorienting maneuvers takes you on a "cobra roll" around a spectator bridge, which is a great place for the faint of heart to get an idea of what they're missing. Remember to wave to Aunt Martha as you whiz by.

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