Sizing up the not-so-cheap thrills
A sampling of some of the big rides at this year's Pepsi Waterfront Village and their thrill factors:
• Ride: Big Sling
What it does: Slingshots you 300 feet into the air.
Barfometer: Low. One second you're perfectly still; two seconds later you're 300 feet up. Too quick for nausea.
Stagger quotient: Medium. Riders look more wobbly-legged getting on than getting off.
Scream factor: Modest. More shouts than screams, mostly right at the start when you experience 5 Gs and wind up higher than many downtown Portland buildings.
Height: 300 feet
Duration: 1 minute, 15 seconds, most of which is spent during the return to the ride platform.
Cost: $30 per person; $50 for two
• Ride: Evolution
What it does: Strapped into a seat, you spin on the end of a pendulum that swings you upward in a complete circle.
Barfometer: Medium high. More of an issue after mealtimes and, inexplicably, when they play 'Flight of the Valkyries.'
Stagger quotient: Low
Scream factor: High, mostly because of all the upside-down action. 'It's a head rush,' said Phillip Bouiss of Sun Valley, Idaho.
Height: 68 feet
Duration: 2 minutes, 10 seconds
Cost: $5.10; cheaper when buying coupons in bulk.
• Ride: Ring of Fire
What it does: Loop-the-loop
Barfometer: High, partly because of extreme speeds.
Stagger quotient: High. Most people hold the handrail when getting off.
Scream factor: High. Frequent, pervasive and loud.
Height: 64 feet
Duration: 2 minutes
Cost: $4.25; cheaper when buying coupons in bulk
• Ride: Fire Ball
What it does: Secures you inside a frame that spins around at the end of a pendulum that swings back and forth.
Barfometer: Low; varies according to intestinal strength.
Stagger quotient: Medium low
Scream factor: High. 'I love it,' said Amanda Mortimore of Yamhill. 'I've been on it three times.'
Height: 45 feet
Duration: 2 minutes
• Ride: Turbo Force
What it does: Spins you like you're sitting at the end of a propeller.
Stagger quotient: High. It subjects riders to 3.5 Gs.
Scream factor: High. 'This ride has no mercy,' said operator Michael Ates of Georgetown, Calif. 'You rip and roar.'
Height: 140 feet
Duration: 3 minutes
Ñ Don Hamilton