Most of us live with the effects of gravity dragging us down every single day, so when news arises of places where gravity seems a little less a law and a little more optional, we get excited. Roadside attractions, pricey flights, and amusement parks promise the skewing of gravity, some only slightly, others total. If you’re looking to float like an astronaut or just lose that annoying extra weight for a few minutes, you should probably check these out. Join us for a look at 11 Places on Earth Where Gravity Doesn’t Seem to Work.
4. Zero Gravity Corporation
G-Force One; we think that’s a pretty cool name for a pretty fantastic experience. In Arlington, Virginia you can take a weightless flight for the small sum of $4,950, where you will experience 15 different 30-second parabolas—basically an arc, or a giant U—high in the sky. The flights last between 90 and 100 minutes, and you get to experience three different levels of reduced gravity. One parabola simulates martian gravity at around ⅓ of Earth’s, two simulate lunar gravity at about ⅙ of Earth’s, and the remaining twelve let you feel complete weightlessness, which is sure to be the most amazing gravity-defying experience of your life. Operating since 2004, the Zero Gravity Corporation has had a long list of celebrity passengers including Martha Stewart, Tony Hawk, and Stephen Hawking. Although expensive, this fantastic ride might just be worth it as you’re sure to remember it for the rest of your life.
3. Cosmos Mystery Area
Deep in the Black Hills of South Dakota sits this popular tourist attraction where gravity just doesn’t seem to work correctly. The location of the Cosmos was reportedly found by two young college kids trying to find a suitable place to build a summer cabin, finding instead an area in the woods where gravity worked a little differently. The boys conducted experiments and developed a series of fun, entertaining, and even weird demonstrations to show the public why the Cosmos is just a little whacky. Demonstrations include two seemingly level side-by-side planks where guests grow and shrink depending on the plank they’re on, tennis balls rolling uphill, and a house in which visitors appear to stand nearly sideways in the room. The attraction opened to the public in 1953 and has been sharing the mysteries of the area ever since. If you ever visit, be prepared for your equilibrium to be thrown way out of sorts.
2. Oregon Vortex
Located in a popular tourist town called Gold Hill in, you guessed it, Oregon, sits our next mysterious, gravity-defying spot. The famed House of Mystery was originally built as an assay office in 1904, which soon afterward slid from its foundation and came to rest at a gravity-defying angle. Local legend lends to the mystery of the area as it’s told that travelers attempting to pass through would find that their horses wouldn’t want to pass through and Native Americans called the site “forbidden” land. Similar to the Cosmos Mystery Area in South Dakota, one of the demonstrations done at the Oregon Vortex is the height difference demonstration, where people appear to grow and shrink while moving to either side of a board. Some believe that a forced perspective is to blame for the anomaly, but that has been ruled out with readings taken by a stick. The site has been investigated and featured in many tv shows, including Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files and Ghost Adventures. The X-Files also referred to the Oregon Vortex in a season seven episode titled “Rush.”
1. Zero Gravity U.S.A.
If spending $4,950 to feel gravity’s pull dissipate just doesn’t seem worth it to you, maybe $3,000 will sound a little better. Zero Gravity U.S.A. is a company in St. Petersburg, Florida that provides weightless flights that you won’t have to fight for room to perform your acrobatics on. A private plane takes you up and does parabolic maneuvers just like the Zero Gravity Corporation, but it’s just you, your instructor, and the pilot on board. Even though the plane is a little more cramped, you have the back of the plane all to yourself to do, well, whatever you want. The plane climbs to 34,000 feet at 45 degrees then drops 10,000 feet at the same angle over and over to provide you with an environment like no other. You get to feel gravity melt away for roughly two whole minutes of your flight, and like Zero G Corp they give you three different reduced-gravity sensations. A $2,000 difference doesn’t seem like much, but for a weightless experience all to yourself it looks like this might just be the ticket.