Terrific Tuesdays: Riding Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

Magic Kingdom is home to four great mountains now – the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is a “mountain” of sorts, along with the classics Splash Mountain, Space Mountain, and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.  While I like them all, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad will always hold a special place in my heart.  This was the first roller coaster I ever went on, way back in the day.  When you board your train car, they tell you to hold tight for the “Wildest Ride in the Wilderness”, and a wild ride is definitely what you get.

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is a train car that takes you through an old abandoned mine.  While the hills aren’t overly steep, the ride zips along at a fast pace and jostles you around quite a bit.  This is a great in-between roller coaster – not quite as light as Goofy’s Barnstormer, but not as scary or fast as some of the other roller coasters.  Some things to keep in mind are it’s a wooden roller coaster, and as such, it’s very rickety.  If you don’t like being jerked around on a ride, this may not be the one for you.  But if your kids (or you) are looking to transition into roller coasters, this is a great one to try.

The attention to detail on this ride is amazing – from the detail put into the town of Tumbleweed, to the old man in the bathtub, to the rock formations and abandoned dig sites and geysers.  There’s so much to look at, you’ll swear you’ve been transported into an old mining town – and you kind of hope the ride will hurry up and deliver you back to safety before the mine collapses around you!  If you’ve ridden it before, check it out again, but try riding it at night – the town lights up, you see moving silhouettes in the saloon, and you can hear the faint sounds of people living in the town as well.  And while you zoom in and out of the cave, you can catch a bit of the fireworks (if you’re not too busy looking at everything else on the ride!)

You can find Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World, as well as in Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, and Tokyo Disneyland.  This is a popular one, and Fastpass is recommended.  This is one of the rides that has an interactive queue, so if you do end up standing in line, Disney has added that extra special touch to make sure you don’t get bored.  Definitely add this one to your list of must-do’s!!!

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Nicole is a more recent convert to Disney, and has her husband Corey to thank. As a kid, she went a couple of times and had fun, but didn’t really catch the “Disney bug” until her husband finally convinced her to go in March of 2003. Since then, she goes every opportunity she can, and every time finds something new to explore! She’s a proud Disney Vacation Club owner and mother of two Disneyphiles – ages 5 (Maggie) and 2 (Max). She helps friends and family to plan Disney vacations all year round, and when she can’t be at Disney, she surrounds herself with it. Her house and office have plenty of pictures and souvenirs covering them, so she’s never far away from the magic!

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