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Friday, June 14, 2013

Sailing Ship Columbia Turns 55 - Sail On!

June seems to be an anniversary month for Disneyland. Next week is the Tiki Room's 50th anniversary but before we get to that, today, June 14, 55 years ago in 1958, the Sailing Ship Columbia made its maiden voyage around the Rivers of America and has been delighting passengers ever since (when it's running).
Now my confession is that I haven't been on the Columbia since 2004. When it comes to taking passengers around the ROA, it's the steamship Mark Twain that does most of the heavy lifting. The Columbia is reserved for weekends or days when peak crowds are expected. And since the 'ol Disneyland Traveler tries to make his trips to Disneyland away from peak periods, I get to see a lot of the Columbia parked in its berth over by the Hungry Bear restaurant or maybe in its triumphant appearance in Fantasmic.
And my second confession is that I prefer making my river excursions on the Mark Twain, and that's for one big reason. The Mark Twain has shade from the midday sun. The Columbia doesn't. Yes, the Columbia does have a below deck area to give the vessel some true authenticity but down there you miss out on the river scenery. Still, the Columbia is a gentle ride that should be experienced by every Disneyland fan. Another gift from Walt. 

The Mark Twain and Columbia in 1958
A Disney Photo

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