The Expedition Everest is one of Disney animal Kingdom’s best steel roller coasters! To ride this uniquely themed roller coaster, you will have to visit Walt Disney World resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, near Orlando. As you can most probably can tell, the ride is based upon the Mount Everest, which is a mountain in the Himalayas. The ride opened on April 7th, 2006 during Disney Animal Kingdom’s 5th Aniversarry.
Expedition Everest can often be compared to the Matterhorn Bobsled roller coaster, which was built in 1959 which was also a snowy, themed mountain at Disneyland.
Here’s an interesting fact for you! If the Expedition Everest was a real mountain it could have been the highest summits in Florida, standing at a huge 540 feet above sea level. Just so you all know , the mountain is not a reproduction of Mount Everest. It’s based on the fictional Forbidden Mountain guarded by the yeti in the attraction story created by Walt Disney Imagineering. The ride sits on 6.2 acres of land, and occupies one acre of its space.
he ride queue winds through a small Asian town and their museum dedicated to the local legend of the Yeti. Riders reach a station in which they board a train. Advertisements say the train will take them on a journey to Mount Everest, while first passing through the Forbidden Mountain which the yeti is said to guard as his home.
The coaster leaves the station and ascents a small lift which goes into a slight dip, then the train circles around to a larger lift, carrying the riders towards the mountain peaks. On the way up they pass through a ransacked temple with murals of the yeti, warning the riders that the mountain is his territory.
When the train finally reaches the top of the mountain, it curves around the main peak, then goes through a cave. Upon leaving the cave, the train slows to a halt before track that has been torn apart, presumably by the yeti. I love how they have added a story behind the coasters theme. Makes rides a lot more interesting! During this brief stop, the track switches inside the cave. The train then rolls backwards into the cave and down a new route, through a dark tunnel that spirals downward.
The train comes to a halt again in a large cave inside the mountain where riders see the shadow of the yeti on the wall as he tears up more track. During this time, another track switch activates. As the shadow moves away, the train rolls forward, out of the mountain and down the main 519 ft. drop. The train makes a banked turn and speeds back up through another cave in the mountain, in which the roars of the yeti are heard again. The train then makes two loops outside, before it is lifted back into the mountain a final time. The train drops through a cave where a large animatronic yeti reaches down to try and derail the train (when the yeti is not working for various reasons, a strobe light is fixed on it, and wind blows across it to simulate movement). Upon reaching the bottom of this drop, riders return back to the unloading dock and depart into a gift shop.
I have not ridden this ride my self , but I must say it does look a heap of fun!