A personal exploration of Disney media along with the chronicling of my many trips to Disneyland through the years. And while this is primarily a Disney and Disneyland blog, along the way I occasionally contribute writings on some other pop culture and media topics just for the fun of it. There are almost 800 posts to this blog. Click through the Archives and I hope you have a good time. Enjoy The Disneyland Traveler Blog (completely without ads or annoying attempts to sell you anything).
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is down for an extensive refurbishment till about Halloween - a total of about 10 months. Yesterday I posted about imagineer Tony Baxter's sudden retirement. Tony and his railroad are forever linked so I guess it only seems right to take one more look at the man and his train. Right now, beside the majestic Big Thunder Mountain, sits an even more majestic construction crane which now dominates Disneyland site lines. The track is being ripped out piece by piece soon to be replaced by a new track (and new trains). Big Thunder Mountain Railroad was Tony's first major project. Though he would go on to work on the 1983 Fantasyland renovation Splash Mountain, Indina Jones Adventure, Tony is most closely remembered as the creator of Big Thunder Mountain which has now been propagated in Disney parks around the world (under different names in some cases).
Thunder Mountain Railroad is a great ride, a fully immersive themed experience and guess what? It isn't based on a movie. It was created at a time when imagineers could still let their concepts and ideas reach for the blue skies and Disney was willing to put up the large amounts of money it took to finance them (Note: not all of them, even Tony Baxter had many of his greatest ideas squashed in corporate budgeting).
When the refurbishment is completed in late October I'd bet my dog that Tony Baxter will be there to greet its awaited return. Maybe he even gets the first official ride. It would only be right. Over the spring and summer and on into fall, many will miss Big Thunder Mountain Railroad but it will be back. Behind the scenes, fans of Disney parks may miss Tony Baxter even more.
A MiceChat / MiceAge In the Parks Photo
And how about one more ride on the wildest ride in the wilderness. YouTube videographer asianjma123 just recently posted another POV ride through and it may be the best look yet at the great attraction.