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17 Hidden Secrets on Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Expedition Everest

The towering Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom is one of the most thrilling roller coasters every created by Disney's Imagineers. It's also stunningly detailed, and packed with little details.

Dominating the Asia area of the park, Expedition Everest was opened in 2006. Designed to fill a thrill ride-shaped hole in Disney's Animal Kingdom's line-up, it has proven to be immensely popular.

The ride's storyline revolves around guests embarking on expedition to climb Mount Everest. However, in order to reach the mountain, they must first head to a base camp on the Forbidden Mountain. Legend says that the mountain is guarded by the mysterious Yeti - and that he doesn't take too kindly to intruders.

The queue line begins in the village of Serka Zong, with the first building that guests enter being the booking office for Himalayan Escapes, a local adventure travel agency run by Norbu and Bob. Guests then pass through a replica temple, a tea garden and a Yeti Museum owned by Professor Pema Dorjay. Finally, they board one of the ride's trains to begin their journey up the Forbidden Mountain.

Expedition Everest is packed full of tiny details, with around 8,000 artifacts on display in the museum alone. Next time you ride, look out for these 17 hidden secrets!

17. Authentic materials

Serka Zong

Image: Mark Adams

All of the buildings in Serka Zong were made using "rammed earth" bricks, which are created by mixing water, dirt and straw together and hammering the mixture until it becomes rigid.

16. A significant color

Serka Zong Bazaar

Image: Mark Adams

Throughout the village of Serka Zong, notice that many of the corners of buildings, doorways and other elements are colored red. This is considered by Himalayan locals to keep evil spirits away.

15. Extensive landscaping

Expedition Everest (4)

Image: IceNineJon

To recreate the lowlands surrounding Mount Everest, more than 900 bamboo plants, 10 species of trees and 110 species of shrubs were planted.

14. An unusual height restriction

One Yeti Foot

Image: Bzar

Even if you know that your kids meet the height requirement, have them measure themselves at the entrance to the ride anyway. The requirement? Guests must be at least one "Yeti foot" tall to ride (44 inches).

13. The totem poles

Expedition Everest (3)

Take a look at the totem poles in front of Expedition Everest. These were hand-carved by Nepalese craftsmen.

12. Authentic memorabilia

Expedition Everest queue

The queue line for Expedition Everest is intricately detailed. Many of the items in the queue are authentic, with climbing gear being taken from the base of Mount Everest and computers and ladders being purchased from Nepalese stores.

11. A familiar beverage

Coke bottles

Coca-Cola has spread across the world, and there's evidence of this in Expedition Everest. Nepalese coke bottles are visible thoughout the queue line.

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There are 13 comments.

If I remember correctly, the Yeti also used to be white. I heard that, because of the way the ride was constructed, they can't reach him to fix the animatronics or clean him. I often don't even see him the first time I ride anymore because he's so dirty. Of course, this gives me a good excuse to ride more than once. This is, by far, one of my favorite queue lines.

False, the yeti was never white, she is purposefully brown. The yeti that is white is at the Matterhorn in Disneyland. The number 1 secret is false as well.

How is #1 false? Don't just claim it's false and leave it at that.
We are Disney AP and went to the AP exclusive weekend for the ride. It used to move and it was very cool. The following year, we noticed it didn't move. I've read numerous articles regarding how they disabled it because it shaking everything apart.

First of all, the concrete foundation is not cracked. That is ludicrous and dangerous. If it were true, they would've had to completely revamp the ride. You want to know what I used to say to guests when they came asking questions? She has a broken back, she needs neck surgery, her arm is broken.. etc. Since all sort of "magic" has been killed here, do you really want to know? There was an air leak into the hydraulics. Bam. Broken back causing a dislocated arm that can no longer move. No broken concrete or "shaking" things around. Nope she can't move. And to fix her? They would have to remove the exterior of the ride and the ride track. Until they find a way to avoid that, she will never move again.

First of all, the concrete foundation is not cracked. That is ludicrous and dangerous. If it were true, they would've had to completely revamp the ride. You want to know what I used to say to guests when they came asking questions? She has a broken back, she needs neck surgery, her arm is broken.. etc. Since all sort of "magic" has been killed here, do you really want to know? There was an air leak into the hydraulics. Bam. Broken back causing a dislocated arm that can no longer move. No broken concrete or "shaking" things around. Nope she can't move. And to fix her? They would have to remove the exterior of the ride and the ride track. Until they find a way to avoid that, she will never move again.

The yeti has its own foundation which is not part of the rides track or foundation. It is very possible for it to have cacked from stress and still be safe as long as what caused the crack is no longer being done. Funny thing people dont realize is how they claim they cant get up to the Yeti to fix it yet there is a Disco ball that was added afterwards right behind the Yeti so evidently they got up there for that. And all Animatronics require maintenance so I find it hard to believe Disney built it in there with no way to get to it to repair the thing. Makes the cracked foundation excuse sound that much more plausible.

you are correct. In the very beginning, the yet he was white. I was a cast member at the time of opening and we had a ride through with the lights on. And many times riding it after that, it was a white up until a few years ago.

If you were in fact a cast member, you would know she has always been brown. I worked there as an attractions cast member, I worked there with the people who opened the attraction, and I know every nook and cranny of that mountain. Why would the Imagineers build the yeti white then turn around and make her brown? That's ludicrous. If you view footage of the attraction's development and opening, what color is she? Brown.

Linds I think you dont know nearly what you think you do. Want me to send you the vacation planning DVD from the year the ride opened? Because they show this gigantic white yeti swinging its arm down at the Everest cars. It was certainly a white yeti plain as day in that video. ANd a few videos after as well.

this is a little late to the party(just found out about this site this year{2017}) but i believe linds is correct, albeit very abrasive, about the color of the yeti
if you google expedition everest yeti moving 2006, and click the machinedesign(dot)com link they have a picture of the yeti there

To the guy that thinks it's a "ludicrous" thought that the foundation that the support that holds the yeti cracked, you're an idiot. The mountain and ride system were designed independently of the Yeti's system, causing the problem described in the article. This is why the yeti no longer moves, when the yeti was attached to the mountain, the yeti shook the mountain too much.

I thoroughly enjoy Theme Park Tourist and its articles. I was also a longtime cast member at Disneyland and was lucky enough to see the yeti when it worked. Such a scary and cool figure! I offer one little tip to the author. "Queue" and "line" mean the same thing. You can simply say "the queue" or "the line." Saying "the queue line" is just redundant. ☺️

The Yeti and mountain were never connected or touched in any way. The Yeti had its own independent structure from the beginning of design.

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