Pathfinder Repository


Roller Coasters

This Pathfinder is no longer being actively maintained by ipl.

Nothing provides the same thrill and excitement to the coaster enthusiast as a ride on a roller coaster. Coaster enthusiasts enjoy all types of coasters, from the first roller coaster at New York’s Coney Island to the latest steel marvels. This guide is designed to provide information about roller coasters, including web sites, information about organizations, and print materials.

Web Sites | Organizations | Print Materials

Web Sites

  • Amusement Park Physics http://www.learner.org/exhibits/parkphysics/coaster.html
    This site describes the physics behind roller coasters. It allows you to design your own roller coaster and analyzes the physics involved in your completed coaster. Roller coaster history is also included.
  • InCoasterPaedia http://www.incoasterpaedia.com/
    This site is “an extended index to references on the history of roller coasters.” It provides information about books, posters, periodicals, postcards, and organizations relating to roller coasters and amusement parks.
  • Roller Coaster Database http://www.rcdb.com/
    The Roller Coaster Database (RCDB) “is a comprehensive, searchable database with information and statistics on over 500 roller coasters in North America.” It includes pictures and provides reports about upcoming coasters.
  • ThrillRide! http://www.thrillride.com/
    “The Internet’s Scream Machine Magazine” provides news articles, polls, reviews, and rumors about roller coasters.
  • Ultimate Rollercoaster http://ultimaterollercoaster.com/
    This site provides “informative and entertaining information on the topics of roller coasters, theme parks and thrill rides.” It includes the “Roller Coaster Yellowpages,” a comprehensive list of coasters and theme parks with ride specifications and theme park information.


  • American Coaster Enthusiasts Home Page http://www.aceonline.org/
    This is “the official home page of the American Coaster Enthusiasts, the world’s largest club of amusement ride enthusiasts.”
  • European Coaster Club http://ds.dial.pipex.com/ecc/
    This site is “for members of the European Coaster Club and all other fans of rollercoasters and white knuckle rides the world over.” It includes news, pictures, videos, and web resources relating to roller coasters.
  • National Amusement Park Historical Association http://www.napha.org/
    The National Amusement Park Historical Association (NAPHA) “is the world’s only educational and enthusiast’s organization dedicated to all aspects of the amusement park.” NAPHA’s site provides information about “the history of the industry, where the world’s oldest amusement parks are located, what parks feature world record breaking roller coasters” and more.

Print Materials

In the Dewey Decimal System, which is used in most public libraries, books about roller coasters can be found in section 791 (“Public performances”). Most university libraries use Library of Congress Subject Headings. Headings that pertain to roller coasters include Roller Coasters and Roller Coasters—History.

  • The Incredible Scream Machine : A History of the Roller Coaster
    by Robert Cartmell, March 1986, illustrated hardcover
    This book discusses the first hundred years of the roller coaster, starting with the first coaster at Coney Island. It also examines the physics and psychology of coasters.
  • The Roller Coaster Lover’s Companion : A Thrill Seeker’s Guide to the World’s Best Coasters
    by Steven J. Urbanowicz, October 1997, paperback
    This book provides information and ratings of coasters around the world. It includes a section about planning multi-theme park roller coaster vacations, even providing tips for specific parks.
  • Roller Coaster : Wooden and Steel Coasters, Twisters and Corkscrews
    by David Bennett, September 1998, illustrated hardcover
    This book discusses the history of coasters and modern advances in coaster technology. Roller coasters from theme parks around the world are represented in numerous color photos.
  • Roller Coasters, Flumes and Flying Saucers
    by Robert Reynolds, April 1999, illustrated hardcover
    This book describes the history of modern amusement park rides, including roller coasters and other rides. Information about Disneyland and the inventors of some of the most popular rides is provided.
  • Scream Machines : Roller Coasters Past, Present and Future
    by Herma Silverstein, 1986, hardcover
    This book describes the history and popularity of roller coasters. It also speculates about the future of the roller coaster.
  • White Knuckle Ride : The Illustrated Guide to the World’s Biggest and Best Roller Coaster and Thrill Rides
    by Mark Wyatt, illustrated hardcover
    This book provides detailed information and photos of the best coasters in the U.S. It also includes some information about coasters around the world.

This pathfinder created by Amal Beck