Sawmill Thrill is the fourth level of Autumn Heights, and the twelfth overall in Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze. It is a minecart level, taking place on a track running through a machinery mill area, hence the name. Pufftons are the only enemies in the level, as the main obstacles are spinning blades and chunks of wood blocks.
The level starts out in a deforested area containing birch stumps. Soon after, there is a Barrel Cannon that shoots the Kongs into a minecart, which starts rolling through a long track. After going down a short ramp and jumping across some gaps, the Kongs blast from another Barrel Cannon to launch through a glass window and into a large enclosed sawmill. The sawmill has several hazards around the track, such as running blades, gears, and sliding wood blocks. The Kongs must carefully jump over and duck under some small running blades suspended just above the rails, while jumping over blocks of wood that are sitting on them. After this is a series of large logs that the large blades cut through, revealing items such as hearts while gradually forming a path for the Kongs. After crossing a few carved blocks of wood, the Kongs pass a checkpoint, followed by a short series of rail segments. The minecart drops off into the abyss from the last rail segment, and the Kongs are dropped into a Log Canoe that moves along a wooden water slide.
A small inclined rail leads outside the sawmill, where the Kongs ride a Log Canoe along a body of water soared by Pufftons and several pointed logs protruding from the water. Whenever the Kongs jump, they go underwater briefly before floating back to the surface. In the water area, the Kongs can slide through another track, going through an area on the water with several spike rows in an enclosed surface. If the Kongs jump into the building's roof, they lose a life. A wooden bridge leads the Kongs back into the factory, where they first enter a machine with saws, which cut apart the Log Canoe and give a minecart to the Kongs for the rest of the level. The second checkpoint is directly after the machine.
After the second checkpoint, the Kongs must jump across three platforms with large spinning blades around them. The last blade falls off, chasing the Kongs through another sawmill, which is similar to the first one. The spinning blade causes wood blocks to fall on the path while destroying the path along the way. The Kongs can either jump over or duck under the wood blocks. Shortly after, some segments of rails fly into the air, and the Kongs must jump from them to briefly stay airborne above an abyss. A sloped track leads the Kongs outside the second sawmill, following by and on a set of crooked rails. Like the first minecart, the crooked rails cause the second minecart to fall into a pit after the Kongs fall onto a platform with the Slot Machine Barrel.
A secret exit can be reached by jumping on a Puffton near the end, which causes the Kongs to land on a track that leads to the portal. The portal allows the Kongs to access Crumble Cavern.
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