Alpine Coaster Coming to Grafton

A whole new level of fun is coming to Aerie’s Resort in Grafton with the construction of a new Alpine Coaster.

This sensational all-ages adventure ride—the first of its kind in Illinois—promises to be a year-round destination for families and thrill-seekers throughout the Midwest.

“We are so excited to bring a world-class attraction to Illinois and Grafton,” said Sandy Lorton, co-owner of Aerie’s Resort. “The Alpine Coaster has been something we have wanted to build at Aerie’s for several years and now that dream is a reality.”

Riders will board a two-person coaster sled and traverse the wooded hillside on over 3,000 feet of stainless-steel rail system, cruising through seasonal foliage, skimming along limestone outcroppings, and twisting & turning around natural formations in the landscape at speeds up to 25 miles per hour. At the end of the line, a cable system pulls the sled & riders up 875 feet, returning to the starting point.

“The new Alpine Coaster is definitely going to have an impact on tourism in the Great Rivers & Routes region of Southwest Illinois,” Cory Jobe, President/CEO of the Great Rivers & Routes Tourism Bureau noted. “This means thousands of new visitors will flock to southwest Illinois to explore all Aerie’s -- and the region -- has to offer. The owners of Aerie’s do a great job of thinking outside the box when it comes to planning new additions to their already strong slate of attractions.”

Aerie’s is partnering with experienced leaders in the outdoor amusement industry Wiegand Sports USA, the North American division of Wiegand Sports GmbH Germany, to design and build the coaster. With over 270 installations worldwide, Wiegand is the market leader in the mountain coaster industry, and theirs is the only coaster that complies with the latest applicable DIN, ISO, ASTM, CSA and CA-OSHA standards.

“The City of Grafton is excited that Aerie’s Resort will be adding a new, thrilling adventure ride called the Aeries Alpine Coaster to their resort at the top of the bluffs. This family-friendly action activity will supplement Aeries’ famous zipline and SkyTour making it a tourism destination for all ages,” Grafton Mayor Mike Morrow remarked.

Opening in September 2022, Aerie’s Alpine Coaster will build on the success of the Grafton SkyTour and Grafton Zipline for attracting new visitors to the region.

“The Aerie’s brand is synonymous with adventure, natural scenic beauty, and family-oriented fun,” said Karla Flannery, deputy director of the Illinois Office of Tourism. “This exciting new attraction located along the Great River Road, one of Illinois’ seven National Scenic Byways, will inspire more tourists to visit this region of the state known for its awe-inspiring outdoor adventures.”

For all the latest info about the new coaster and all the attractions and amenities at Aerie’s, follow on social media or visit