Magical May: Indiana Jones

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When I was little, I remember standing in line with my dad to go on this crazy wild drive through a freaking scary temple thing with fire and skeletons and a big old snake.

We were lucky enough to be at Disneyland on the day Indiana Jones opened after months of refurbishment. I’m the idiot that was expecting a whole new ride and everyone pointed out that they probably just replaced parts and did preventative maintenance and stuff. Silly me!

As we were walking through the queue we started wondering where we were. I mean, obviously we were on the Indiana Jones ride in Disneyland, but where do they keep the ride?? So we started asking the cast members, and we finally got an answer! We weren’t underground (like we’d originally guessed) but we were really in a big square building. They said it would be hard for us to tell if we looked at an overhead view of the park.. once you factor in space for the Jungle Cruise, this big white building is the next logical location for the ride.

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Anyway. That’s all a bunch of  my speculation, so let’s move on to things I DO know about the ride.

  • Work on the ride began in August of 1993, in the Eeyore section of the then Disneyland parking lot. Not only did it take over part of the lot, it also caused the Jungle Cruise to be re-routed.
  • The ride has been around for almost 20 years! It opened March 3rd, 1995.
  • Originally AT&T sponsored the ride and guests were given special cards to decode.
  • As a tribute to the Eeyore parking lot section, one of the old parking lot signs was place in the projector room. You have to be close to the front, looking backwards and up. I’ve only been able to see it once I took a picture of it. Not many people appreciated the flash.
  • The ride itself is 2,500 feet long and never actually goes over 22 miles an hour, but the simulated speed is 65 mph.
  • Within the ride are a few “Hidden Mickeys.” One is a skeleton named Bones that is wearing mouse ears. Another is a lantern that has a figurine of Tinkerbell at the top.
  • The queue of the ride is interactive – there are ropes you’re not supposed to pull, stones with diamonds you’re not supposed to stand on, and bamboo poles you’re not supposed to touch.
  • The ride accommodates 2,400 people an hour.
  • One of the jeeps in the queue is an actual patrol truck used in the filming of Raiders of the Lost Ark.
  • I found a site with pictures of them building the ride! It’s amazing how timeless the actual look 0f the ride is.

Did I miss anything? What’s your favorite part of the ride? Mine is singing along to the soundtrack 🙂

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