What is SPEED BOB and AltmuhlBOB; the Only Mountain Coaster With Hills!


Sommerrodelbahn AltmühlBOB is a ‘summer toboggan run’ located in the Altmühltal Nature Park in Bavaria, Germany. There’s a hometown-ski-resort vibe here, with a Biergarten at the bottom of the hill. (In the States, the ‘bob’s’ that are here are known as alpine or mountain coasters as they are attached to fixed tracks, and not moving freely in a trough.) We came here to ride the infamous SpeedBOB, built by Weigand. It’s a fairly rare credit and I’ll be counting it as my 500th different roller coaster!

Tickets: 3 per ride
Hours of operation (Check website for most up-to-date details):
March/ Saturday + Sunday: 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. or by prior appointment
April – October/ Daily: 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

SpeedBOB is the airtime hill coaster that had the whole coaster-enthusiast-world filled with buzz when it opened. It has the classic mountain coaster trains, but with a cover over the front to keep your legs tucked safely inside. It’s probably one of the shortest lift-to-ride-time ratios out there with its classic mountain coaster-style lift system, but a short straight-shot down with multiple airhills. It’s the “El Toro of Mountain Coasters.” Traveling along at speeds up to 60kmph (just under 40mph), the rider’s perspective of speed is enhanced because of the tiny vehicles and distinctive ditches that allow the train to run right into the earth and take full advantage of the hills. The forces don’t really go into negative G’s, so you still get the long weightless feeling over every hill.

It’s the only alpine coaster in the world to feature airtime hills and there are no brakes along the track like a traditional alpine slide, only magnetic brakes at the end of the circuit like a conventional roller coaster. It is 100% a roller coaster because of these characteristics and it really is a fun ride. Check out the video for the best look at this extremely rare ride.

The second coaster at the hill is a run-of-the-mill mountain coaster where you can control the speed with handbrakes. There’s not a lot of speed, but also no ‘auto-braking,’ which is good. It’s a nice compliment to the faster SpeedBOB. This is a tough stop because of the short hours and location, but the setting and drive to the park are beautiful. If you’re traveling for amusement parks, it probably lines up best if you hit AltmuhlBOB in the morning, and then go to another one of the ‘nearby’ theme parks.

We came here on a day where we did a bunch of smaller theme parks, so it worked out as a last stop of the day for us with a drive afterward. It takes about 30 minutes to get both credits here (and pet the goats) before you’ll be back on your way, or you can eat and ride again like we did, and spend some time enjoying the atmosphere.

Length of Stay Recommended: 1-2 hours

Follow us to our next trip report here! A Guide to Visiting: Bayern Park & “Freischutz” the Maurer Launch Coaster

Austin is the owner of "AmusementInsider" and joined the Behind The Thrills team in 2020. The Social Media & YouTube-based outlet is one of the most recognizable names in the industry for all-things roller coasters, with unique videos & peeks into future attractions. Follow him on: Instagram and YouTube