Kill Refurb Marry: The Disney Mountain Range

There is no more beautiful mountain range in the world than the Disneyland Mountain Range.  Cast members and guests alike refer to the four mountains within the park berm by this moniker.  Consisting of Space, Splash, Thunder, and the Matterhorn, they certainly are the most exciting and fun mountain range you can visit. Visitors at other Disney theme parks may disagree, but what pushes Disneyland over the top is the Matterhorn.  No other park has one and because of the difficulty in building it, no other park will.  To be sure there are some great mountains in other parks – Expedition Everest in Animal Kingdom, Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars at Hong Kong Disneyland, and Mount Prometheus at Tokyo DisneySea to name a few.  But the Matterhorn was built under Walt’s watch and is the first tubular steel continuous track roller coaster in the world.  And now with all of the enhancements brought to the original mountain roller coaster, this is still the best!

Journey to the Center of the Earth - a thrill ride inside Mount Prometheus at Tokyo DisneySea
Journey to the Center of the Earth – a thrill ride inside Mount Prometheus at Tokyo DisneySea

This month, our Kill Refurb Marry subject is the Disney parks mountains!  If you’ve read one of these posts before, you know that there is a group of Disney bloggers who write on a topic picked by Melissa over at Mouse on the Mind and then we pick one we’d like to get rid of (kill), one we’d like to change (refurb), and one we think is great the way it is (marry).  It’s probably pretty obvious which one I would marry. But what about the rest?

Kill – Grizzly River Run – It’s got a cute name.  When you take the first initial of each word in the name of the attraction it spells GRR. Very bear like.  And since it’s attached to Grizzly Peak, I figure it counts as a Disney mountain.  But the cute name isn’t enough to save it from the axe.  I’ve just never been a fan of water rides where the only goal is really to get wet.  If I wanted that, I’d walk into the shower fully clothed to get the same effect.  Grizzly River Run has nothing really unique about it either to capture the imagination.  Instead, get rid of it and maybe install the Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars from Hong Kong in its space.

Space Mountain at Disneyland in the setting sun
Space Mountain at Disneyland in the setting sun

Refurb – Space Mountain at Disneyland and Walt Disney World – Don’t get me wrong.  If they never change the ride I’ll still be happy.  But having been to Disneyland Paris (and that was nearly 10 years ago) I loved the concept of “Mission 2” and some of the elements used in the ride.  It’s too bad they changed the name to just “Space Mountain” in Paris as “Space Mountain: Mission 2” elevated expectations which they delivered on.  The only one to feature inversions and a launch system, the French version is even more thrilling than its US counterparts.  While they are at it, if they added the hyperspace tunnel found in the HKDL version, that would be fun and incredible.

The newly refurbished Matterhorn with an all new Abominable Snowman inside
The newly refurbished Matterhorn with an all new Abominable Snowman inside

Marry – Well I already mentioned it but for sure it’s the Matterhorn.  Not only does it have a unique history, unique features (look up stories about the basketball court at the top), and some great refurbishments, but it also has personal memories for me that make it a fond attraction in my heart.

What are your favorite Disney mountains?  While you are thinking about it go and read some of the other bloggers posts over at Mouse on the Mind and tell them Disney Nerds sent you!

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