Like many Disney World enthusiasts, I’ve been to the Orlando parks and visited my favorite attractions numerous times over the years. Each time I visit, though, I notice something different. Some of the rides just move too quickly for guests to see everything, though all the small features definitely add to the overall experience. Here are some details you should look for next time you ride these popular Disney World attractions.
1. Mission: SPACE
If you’re too busy being pinned back in your seat or trying your best not to vomit on Mission: SPACE, then you’re completely normal. While you’re focused on the final frontier and pushing all the little buttons that do absolutely nothing, however, there are a few things you might miss.
Disney is well aware that Mission: SPACE could just as well be called Mission: WORSE THAN A HANGOVER. (That’s why they ask you a zillion times if you really want to ride the orange side before you actually get in your seat.) If you pay attention, in addition to all the fancy technology they borrowed from NASA, Disney also employed another NASA trick: fans. As you’re hurtling through space, the fans are kind enough to blow cool wind in your face. This, of course, is an effort to minimize motion sickness. Just in case it doesn’t work, though, they also include individual barf bags for unlucky guests who succumb to the ride’s effects.
2. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is my all time favorite Disney World ride. It’s a bit surprising to me, however, that there’s actually a storyline that goes along with the adventure.
Because the roller coaster moves so incredibly fast and is amazingly bumpy, I’m only ever vaguely aware of possums and frontier towns and such as I barrel through Big Thunder Mountain. Apparently, there’s a backstory to the ride, and it’s a pretty good one, too.
Supposedly, a man by the name of Barnabas T. Bullion runs the Big Thunder Mountain Company, which transports gold out of the mountain during the Gold Rush. Unfortunately for us, the mountain is haunted by spirits who don’t want us taking the gold. This results in runaway mine trains, earthquakes, flooding, and other disasters guests experience as they careen down the track.
If you’ve noticed all of the “disasters,” then you’re quite the observant individual. Disney uses many effects to portray the haunted caverns, floods, earthquakes, and unsettled mining town of Tumbleweed (yes, the town actually has a name). Various wildlife and citizens in the area are clearly upset by the consequences of gold mining at the haunted mountain. There are numerous hills, turns, and stomach-clenching drops, and the train even seems to sway at one point. Though it definitely feels as if the cars are moving side to side, designers really just banked the track a tad to achieve the swaying effect.
Overall, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is one heck of a ride anyway, but the little details really make this one a fun attraction to experience again and again.