Known as Ghost town in the Sky,this exit Wild West-themed amusement parkin Maggie Valley, phibìc Carolina, has seen as numerous ups and downs over the decades as that old roller coaster. Below we discover Ghost Townfrom the heyday to its decrease through eerie photographs courtesy ofAbandoned Southeast,taken by Leland Kent. Review on to check out thisunusual abandoned design template park…


Big plans

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In 1960, R.B. Coburn, a Virginia-born businessman, to buy Buck Mountain, a mountaintop site towards the bottom of the good Smoky Mountains, through grand to plan to construct his very own theme park. The site overlooked the town of Maggie Valley, north Carolina.

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From vision to reality

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More 보다 200 local workers were hired to build roughly 40 life-sized replica Wild West-style structures inspired through Coburn"s access time to other American ghost towns. The structures perched best on the mountain"s optimal would eventually consist of the park’s main attraction, well-known as Old West.

A substantial investment

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Ghost city was created by previous Disney designer Russell Pearson and also reportedly cost approximately $1 million (£757,000) come build. Follow to exit Southeast, the park spanned around 120,000 square feet (11,148 sqm) that land. Around 200,000 feet (61,000m) the plywood, 300,000 (91,400m) feet that lumber and 20,000 pounds (9,000kg) of nails were supplied to construct the old-fashioned buildings.

Welcome to Ghost town in the Sky

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The park opened its doors to the general public in 1961 and also was instantly a substantial success. It was advocated as “North Carolina’s mile-high theme park” and became among the state"s many popular and also visited attractions transparent the 1960s and also early 1970s.

Stunning scenery

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To visit the park, passengers had actually to plank a dual incline railway come the height of Buck Mountain. The exciting journey contained multiple slopes in the direction of the peak, differing from 30 to 77 levels in steepness, and also afforded picturesque views overlooking Maggie Valley.
In 1962, Coburn installed a two-seater chairlift constructed parallel to the incline railway to take it even much more visitors as much as Ghost"s Town"s entrance. That reportedly moved at a rate of 310 feet (94m) per minute and could carry up to 1,200 tourists per hour.
At the time, the outstanding chairlift, i m sorry climbed much more than 1,250 feet (381m), was supposedly North Carolina"s longest. Sadly as the years passed, choose the rest of the park, the chairlift endured from an ext and more problems and also began to rest down.
Ghost Town consisted of of several various towns situated at various heights that the mountain. They had Mining Town, hill Town, Indian village and Old West. Pictured room the structures located top top the main street that Old West which are still pretty fine preserved.
At the elevation of the popularity, Ghost town attracted hundreds of guests every year. In the at an early stage 1970s, the park invited 400,000 visitors during its height seasons, from families to Wild West enthusiasts.
Located at the heart of Ghost town was the design template park’s most renowned spot, Old West. The town, which is still mainly intact, had a replica bank, saloons, a church, prison and an ext to re-create an really Wild West endure for guests.
A many the action happened top top the town’s main street. Visitors might live out their Wild West dreams and catch a live country music present at the Red Dog Saloon or enjoy can-can dancers placing on a performance at the silver Dollar.

The park was additionally famous for its live shoot-outs which were staged every hourin the middle of Old West's main street.Visitors wouldlineupon the sidewalkfor the finest view of all the action. More recently, the abandonedWestern town hasbeen used as a place fora number offilms such asDean Teaster's Ghost Town (2007), Mandie and the secret Tunnel (2008)andRingside Rosary (2010).


Ghost Town additionally had its fair share that amusement rides which were included over the years. They included the park’s famous Red evil one coaster (later re-named Cliffhanger), Casino, bumper cars and also Sea Dragon.

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The Red adversary coaster, among Ghost Town"s main attractions, opened up in 1988. Unusually, the steel coaster"s boarding terminal was at the optimal of a hill. It then rolled roughly a 90-degree curve into the main drop and also an reverse loop.
Unfortunately under Coburn’s ownership, the park apparently suffered from negative maintenance and also bad administration which eventually led come its downfall. Back it"s declared that Coburn invested thousands the dollars do the efforts to preserve the park, Ghost Town"s attractions would frequently break down.
The chairlift and incline railway especially needed consistent and high value maintenance. In 2002, things went from poor to worse once the chairlift malfunctioned and also trapped passengers, leaving them stranded. A couple of days later, Coburn closed the park for an excellent and put it up because that sale.
Ghost Town continued to be closed because that the next five years and also the park dropped into a further state the disrepair. The park’s desperate require for significant renovations and the possibility of high maintenance prices made it a difficult sell for any type of future owners.
Ghost town reopened in 2007 under brand-new ownership. Countless dollars had actually been spent on restoring the park and also its rides. Part rides and also the twin incline railway were never totally operational again but brand-new attractions to be added.

A brand brand-new area dubbed Heritage town Square openedin an attempt to attract an ext visitors and families. Located at the chairlift terminus, the spot had a themed restaurant.

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In true cowboy fashion, Heritage city Square additionally had a mining-themed shoot gallery. Pictured space sinister headless mannequins decked in Western-style clothing, few of the spooky remains of the abandoned area.
In 2007, the Red adversary was change the name the Cliffhanger after ~ a much-needed makeover. However, huge repairs were required and its opened was pushed back to 2009.
Sadly, the Cliffhanger to be short-lived. Shortly after it opened up in 2009, state inspectors discovered something wrong with among the ride"s seats. It to be closed again because that repairs and also failed to happen a test operation in 2010. It was shut down indefinitely.

The Ghost town train was another attraction that didn't reopen in 2007. This day the engine and carriages are gradually being taken end by nature.

Take alook in ~ these ruins where mom Nature ran riot


Sadly, ticket sales in 2008 were "sluggish" and, an unified with the impacts of the economic recession, the park went into debt. In early 2009, Ghost Town's owners failed come secure any kind of further funding and also declared bankruptcy.


Despite strong fears that the park wouldn't reopen because that the 2009 season, the owners were able to secure assist from a private organization owner.Ghost Town opened up in May however suffered another poor few months. Smoky hill News reported the it failed to cover its operation costs and also workers didn't get their last pair weeks of pay.


After a rocky year in 2009, an ext bad lucky befell the park. In February 2010, a mudslide partially damaged the park and likewise blocked among its accessibility roads. On peak of that, much more financial problems plagued Ghost Town and it didn"t open for the year"s season.

Two years later, business women Alaska Presley to buy the Ghost Town residential property at auction because that $2.5 million (£1.9 million). Unsurprisingly, the park compelled repairs that price millions the dollars and also over the next couple of years, components of Ghost Town opened sporadically, some locations only temporarily.

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The park close up door for an excellent in 2016 and Presley chose to sell up. However it's no the end for Ghost Town. A brand-new buyer, a firm called Ghost town Adventures, iscurrently in last talks around purchasing the parkand reopeningit. The CEO Lamar Berry told The Mountaineerabout plans for a Wild West show, the restoration of the chairlift and also a programme because that weddings. Just time will certainly tell even if it is the park will certainly be revitalized to its glory job again.