Friday, March 18, 2022

March Miscellany: "What Is It & Where Is It?" - The Disneyland Edition

It's time for more "March Miscellany!"  Just a reminder, I'm posting multiple times throughout the month of March!  This is post #3.

Do you want to play a game?  Yes?  Okay, name or describe what we are seeing in each of the photos below, and also the specific location where each photo was taken.  I will tell you this....they were all taken in Disneyland (Anaheim, California), and throughout various decades (1970s - 2010s).

I know this will be easy for some Disneyland fans, but perhaps it will be challenging for others.  You can leave your answers in the comments, below.  In about a week (or less), I will post the answers, along with some supplemental photos.  And feel free to leave other remarks in the comment section, and not just your answers.

Photo #1:


Photo #2:


Photo #3:

Photo #4:

Photo #5:

Photo #6:

Photo #7:


Okay everyone, here are the answers to the "mystery" photos:

#1 - Taken from the Disneyland Railroad, on the "outskirts" of Adventureland.  I'm not sure when that panther, and the rock it was standing on, were added.  If I had to venture a guess, I would say that they were added sometime after 1989.  I think the very first time I noticed them, was in the early nineties.  And I took that picture sometime in the mid to late nineties.  I'm also not sure when they removed the panther, but the rock still exists along the railroad tracks, today:

#2 - Taken while going up the second "lift hill" on Space Mountain.  When the attraction first opened in 1977, the second lift hill featured glass panels and mirrors on either side of the track and on the ceiling, creating an effect that made it appear that you were looking out into infinity. At some point (in the eighties, I believe), they either painted over the glass, or replaced them with solid black panels, which darkened this section of the ride.  And at the top of the lift hill, they added a rotating circle of lights, which projected rotating beams down the lift hill, towards the riders.

#3 - Taken in Space Mountain, in between the second and third lift hills.  In the 2005 renovation of the attraction, a rotating cluster of rocks, or "asteroids," was added alongside this section of track.  From what I've heard, they were eventually going to be lit up, but that never happened.  The only reason they appear lit up in the photo, is because I used a flash when taking it.  Normally the rocks are just quietly rotating in the dark, and go unnoticed by most people.

When Space Mountain opened in 1977, there was an orange and black geodesic sphere in this same spot.  At some point (in the nineties, I think), a satellite dish was placed atop the sphere, and a lighting effect was added to make it appear that "transmissions" were being sent out from the center of the dish.  This is how the sphere appeared in the nineties, after the satellite dish had been added to the top of it:

#4 - Taken inside Innoventions, my most favorite Disneyland attraction, ever.  NOT!  This particular display was presented by Kaiser Permanente, and demonstrated how ultrasound imagery is taken on expectant mothers.  In fact, you could pick up an ultrasound wand yourself, and run it over the body of the manikin.  An image of a fetus would then appear on the computer screens above the respective "mothers."  And yes, this exhibit really did exist at Disneyland!

#5 - Taken alongside the Autopia track, in 2012.  The little car is located in the "park" section of the ride, and is an actual "bronzed" vehicle, from Disneyland's former Midget Autopia attraction.  After that attraction closed in 1966, the track and the vehicles were given to Walt Disney's childhood town of Marceline, Missouri.  This vehicle was reportedly reacquired from the city, and then added alongside the Autopia track in 2000.  That was the year that the Fantasyland and Tomorrowland Autopia tracks, were combined into one longer track.

Here's what the Midget Autopia cars looked like, when they were operating at Disneyland.  The attraction was located just east of Storybook Land.  It was removed in 1966, in order to widen the walkway leading up to the soon-to-open "It's A Small World" attraction.

#6 - Taken inside the Haunted Mansion.  The photo shows a rotating "wheel" with four arms/hands attached.  This is actually situated behind the vehicles, and normally out of sight to the riders.  A spotlight behind the slowly rotating "wheel," creates the creepy shadow of the hand moving across the grandfather clock, which is striking "13."

#7 - Taken in Big Thunder Ranch.  It shows a pile of "mule shoes," which were used on Disneyland's Pack Mules, when they were a park attraction.  I spoke with multiple ranch hands, who tended to the animals in the Big Thunder Ranch.  They all confirmed the story, that back in the day, when the pack mules would be re-shoed, the old shoes were just thrown into a great big pile.  With time, and the elements, they all rusted together into one connected "sculpture."  Supposedly, the pile had been relocated on a couple occasions, but had eventually become so rusted and "brittle," that it could not be moved again.  I was told shortly before the closing of the Big Thunder Ranch, that they were going to be disposed of.  I don't know if that actually happened, or if some of them survived.

The Pack Mule attraction operated at Disneyland, from 1956 to 1973:

How did you do with your answers?  Did you know all of them?  I hope everyone enjoyed this little game.  And a great big "thank you," to all of you who participated!


Andrew said...

So I get the first shot at this... as someone who has never been to Disneyland. These are just my thoughts and I did not look anything up.

#1 is a figure that used to be on the DLRR.

#2 is tricky. Is it the Peoplemover?

#3 might be Big Thunder Mountain RR?

#4 is so weird, it has to be Innoventions. If not, I'm guessing it's some Tomorrowland exhibit.

#5 is an Arrowflite car that was on the Autopia. Is it still there?

#6 looks like you took a flash picture inside the Haunted Mansion.

#7 is a pile of horseshoes in Big Thunder Ranch. I have a book that says they were from the Pack Mules. And there's a pretty obvious Hidden Mickey!

This was fun, TM! Make a really hard one next time ;-) or maybe even do a different location!

"Lou and Sue" said...

#6 TokyoMagic—you “turned around” to snap that shot, didn’t you? As we’re supposed to only see the shadow it makes.

Andrew, you are going to get a lot more right than I will!

Chris S said...

1. Jungle cruise

2. People mover during the circarama portion. I think.

3. Matterhorn interior

4. Eegad what is this

5. Autopia, recent

6. Haunted mansion

7. Thunder ranch bbq?

Chuck said...

Going to write my answers before reading anyone else’s comments. I promise I will do no research until after I post.

Here goes!

1. Jungle Cruise

2. Mission to Mars

3. Primeval World

4. Stumper. Only logical place is Innoventions, which I never saw

5. Autopia (tribute to the Midget Autopia)

6. Haunted Mansion. So that’s how they do the claw shadow effect on the clock striking 13!

7. Big Thunder Ranch

Chuck said...

Oh, good call on #1, Andrew. Totally forgot about that. And it was a tossup for a long time on #3 between your guess and mine. I finally decided that this is probably an oblique view of the lava flow next to the fighting Stegosaurus and Allosaurus Rex.

Major Pepperidge said...

So I guess I'm late to the park. Here are my guesses:

1: Disneyland Railroad, as you pass through Adventureland.
2: I'm stumped, but will guess Space Mountain even though I know it's wrong.
3: Inside the "Pirates" caverns?
4: That weird pregnant lady sculpture is a new addition to Mr. Toad.
5: Autopia... car from the old Midget Autopia.
6: Haunted Mansion "grasping hand" effect, cool!
7: Big Thunder Ranch, jeez, do they really use that many horseshoes anymore? Or does that pile represent 60+ years of accumulation?

Super fun poster, TM! I loved this a lot.

Major Pepperidge said...

Ooops, meant to type "post", not "poster". I have posters on the brain.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Photo #4: Don’t tell me they had some sort of exhibit in the Gerber Baby Changing Station building on Main Street! ;o)

K. Martinez said...

#1 Black Panther (Not Marvel) on the Railroad route between Main Street and New Orleans Square Stations.

#2 Second lift hill of Space Mountain.

#3 Asteroid also inside Space Mountain

#4 exhibit inside Innoventions.

#5 Midget Autopia statue along Autopia 2000 roadway.

#6 The hand shadow mechanism that casts a shadow of a hand passing over a clock's face in the corridor before the Seance room.

#7 Big Thunder Ranch area in back where there's a pile of old horseshoes.

How's that?

Love your idea for a game, TokyoMagic!

K. Martinez said...

Add-on info.

#3 the Asteroid would be just after the second lift before the third and final lift. It replaced the original hexagonal sculpture in that place.

stu29573 said...

I was going to answer, but whatever people said that was right is my official answer.
Cheating is for winners!

"Lou and Sue" said...

TM! Are you ever going to tell us the answers?? I can’t sleep.

TokyoMagic! said...

Sue, I will post the answers tonight, along with more info and also some supplemental photos!

Stu, ha, ha!

Major, yes, the #4 is in the newly renovated Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, which they renamed, "Mr. Toad's Enchanted Revenge."

Andrew, Major and Ken, I'm really glad that you liked this game. I will try to come up with another one, in the future. And I'll try to make it harder (Andrew!) ;-)

Andrew, Sue, Chuck, Major, Ken and "Unknown", THANK YOU for playing my game! I will leave another comment here, tonight, to let everyone know that I have added the additional photos to the post and revealed the answers.

TokyoMagic! said...

Okay, everyone....I added the answers to the end of the post! Thanks again, to everyone who participated in this game! :-)

K. Martinez said...

Thanks for providing the answers, TM! I believe I got them all correct. I would love it if you posted another one of these "What Is It & Where Is It?" game posts. They are a lot of fun!

On another note, I loved that geodesic sphere in Space Mountain, but when they added the satellite dish onto the geodesic sphere, I thought it ruined it. But you know that saying. They ruin everything.

TokyoMagic! said...

Ken, you did get them all correct! I will try to put together another one of these posts, in the future.

And you are right about that satellite dish. Why did they feel that it was needed? It never looked right, sitting on top of the sphere. I don't know why they can't just leave things alone, especially if they aren't able to come up with something that is better, or at least as good as what is already there. Yes, they truly do ruin everything.

Chuck said...

Four out of seven. I think I’m going to have to repeat the class unless there’s some kind of extra credit I can do.

According to Internet chat rooms, which are always 100% reliable, the panther was a reskinned or repainted survivor from the Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland. Can’t believe I forgot about that.

I’ve maybe ridden Disneyland’s Space Mountain four or five times, and only once since the addition of that asteroid, so I don’t feel so bad about missing those. I really only have the vaguest impressions of that ride. WDW’s version left a much stronger impression.

Great job, Ken! As soon as you chimed in, I was pretty sure your answers were the right ones. I should have used Stu’s strategy. Pretty sure this is going to hurt my GPA.

TokyoMagic! said...

Chuck, that's still very good! You get a "silver star" sticker on your answer sheet!

I was going to mention the possibility of that panther figure being from Nature's Wonderland, but I just didn't know for sure. I only ever heard that rumor from one person, and that was back in the 1990s. Maybe Mike Cozart will check in at some point and be able to tell us for sure. Or if I remember, maybe I'll ask him over on a GDB post.

Stefano said...

TM!, this is fun!

The E-Ticket Magazine confirmed that the panther was repurposed from Nature's Wonderland, I think it was the issue devoted to that attraction.

I remember the 1977 Space Mountain lift; in addition to freaky music there were twinkling lights overhead, attached to nearly invisible wires.

It was striking that, in a Space Mountain rocket or on the PeopleMover, you couldn't see the tracks or handrails against the satellite, as you can with the lights on.

The clutching hand effect...Super: sometimes simple stuff is among the most effective. So was the witch's shadow leaning forward in the original Snow White's Adventures, and the HM claw looks identical to the witch's.

Yikes, the horseshoe pile looks like a frame from "Squirm", a squishy 1976 movie about voracious blood worms, one of the best eco-horror flicks ever.

Thanks, looking forward to more posts like this.

TokyoMagic! said...

Stefano, thanks for that confirmation about the panther originally being from Nature's Wonderland. I need to get all of my "E" Ticket Magazines out and reread them!

I forgot about the twinkling lights on Space Mountain's second lift hill. I wonder why they changed they effects on that part of the ride? It seems like they always get rid of the good stuff.

It is pretty amazing just how much wasn't visible (railings, walkways, stairs, etc.), when riding Space Mountain! I have some photos that I took, while riding Space Mountain with the lights on. I'll have to scan and post those.

I rode the original Snow White's Adventures, but I am somehow forgetting the Witch's shadow. I wish there was good ride-through footage out there, of all the Fantasyland dark rides.

I've heard of the film, "Squirm," but never seen it. I'll have to look for that one! Maybe they will show it one of these Saturday nights, on "Svengoolie."