In all of my visits to Yamanashi Prefecture, never before has catching sight of Mount Fuji left my heart beating so fast. Certainly, any view of that lofty symbol of Japan is sure to impart a sense of awe at its scale and natural beauty. But this time, it was the 121-degree freefall right after my fleeting glimpse that rocketed my pulse rate and took my breath away.

With at least seven major twists, and 1,000 meters of track that rears up to 43 meters (141 feet) above ground level, Takabisha is the latest Guinness world-record addition to Fuji-Q Highland in Fujiyoshida.

Despite the three-hour wait in summer showers, the two-minute ride was worth it! After being buckled in and sent off by staff chanting, "Bisha! Bisha! Takabisha!" there was barely time to brace for a nosedive in darkness as the unforgettable ride began.