History and Secrets of Space Mountain

Space Mountain is one of the most iconic attractions at the Disney Parks. The sight of the building is instantly recognizable to nearly every Disney fan. Walt Disney was initially against having thrill rides in his family friendly park, but the success of the Matterhorn Bobsleds lead to the green light for Space Mountain. There is now a Space Mountain at nearly every Disney Park around the world (all except Shanghai Disneyland). The first Space Mountain opened at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in 1975 and was quickly followed by its opening at Disneyland in 1977.

Space Mountain Was the First Indoor Coaster

One of the reasons that Walt Disney was against roller coasters is the lack of theming. In order to transport the ride-goers to outer space, a roller coaster built completely indoors was necessary. This allowed Imagineers, and some consulting astronauts, to work their magic.

Structural Supports on the Outside

Most building are designed with their structural supports and concrete columns hidden inside the building. The Space Mountain building had to be designed with its main supports on the outside in order to create smooth surfaces inside to project all of the stars and galaxies.

First Roller Coaster Assisted by Computers

The technology used in ride was very cutting edge at the time it was made. Computers were used to measure the weight of the cars and determine the speeds they should take through each turn and drop. This was very important in order to run multiple cars at the same time and make sure they never run into each other.

There Was 2 Space Mountain Movie in the Works

Back in 2012, Disney had hired Max Landis and Max Borenstein to write a competing screenplays for a film on Space Mountain. Both films were scrapped when Disney acquired Lucasfilm and began working on new Star Wars films.

One of the Slowest Thrill Rides

The top speed of the ride at the Magic Kingdom is only 28 MPH! Disneyland’s version tops out at just a few more MPH. This puts the ride among some of the slowest at the parks. Part of the illusion of speed comes from the fact that you are in total darkness and the fans blowing wind in your face. Additionally, the steepest drop is only 39 degrees, which is not very steep at all.

Meanings Hidden Throughout the Ride

There are secrete easter eggs hidden throughout the line queue. Almost all of the text that is there for decoration and theming, actually alludes to something. At Disneyland, the “Space Station 77” sign is a reference to the year it opened. At Florida, a sign with “Closed Sectors” references attractions at the park that have been closed. For example: FL-MTWR = Fantasyland, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

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