By Lisa Green
Expedition Everest has something for everyone – or at least everyone
over 44″ tall.
has the best theming, best story line, best standby line – although
Tower of Terror would be a very close second. Located in the Asia
section at Animal Kingdom, you’ll easily spot the ride’s famed mountain
long before you reach it.
Way back in 2006, we were lucky enough to visit Disney World during Expedition Everest’s soft opening. We rode it seven times! Yes, we can say we are among the
fortunate few who experienced The Yeti in its original, fully
functioning, arm-swiping glory. Jealous? You know you are. Sadly,
Betty (as we super-fans call the mountain’s guardian) is broken. Most
EE fans agree – She may never be fixed, never restored to her original
scary self. All you get now is a mere shadow of her former brilliant
Yeti-ness (albeit a strobe-lit disco one). Originally (yes, I am an
actual authentic eye witness), the Yeti was a highly visible,
hunch-backed, dread-lock-sporting giant whose long, simian arm would
take a swipe at you mid-ride – VERY cool and frightening. However,
early on, the rumors say, the foundation supporting the gargantuan beast
cracked (reports about the actual problem vary). But here’s a fact:
Betty the Yeti is broken and cannot be repaired without tearing up (or
down) the entire mountain. Searching the internet will uncover the many
different theories about poor Betty but all seem to agree: The repairs
would be very costly and take a long time during which EE would be
So why is this still my favorite ride?
one thing, the queue for this attraction is SO fantastic – you’ll
actually miss some of the best things about the Expedition
Everest experience if you have a fast pass. Long before you enter the
actual queue, you’ll notice an abundance of detail. The mountain itself
with its snowy peak, the worn colored flags strung through the air, the
statues, the trinkets and tributes – and that’s just outside. Step
into the Yeti museum and the expedition outfitters supply store!
Amazing! So much to look at, you’ll forget you’re in line for the best
ride at Disney World!
Once you make it to the ride platform
(where you’ll find still more details to enjoy), hop aboard a tea train
for what at first is a delightful little ride past some pretty
landscaping – then the climb begins that will take you into the
forbidden mountain (check out the great view on the way up). Once you
reach the top? Hang on! There is SO much action on this steel coaster
which reaches 50 mph during the ride’s nearly 3 minute duration. There
are plenty of surprises, so keep those eyes open! Even the post-ride
exit through the gift shop is fun. This ride has it all! If you
haven’t yet had the pleasure and are headed to Disney World, put this at
the tippy top of your “must do” list.
Anybody else love EE as much as I do?
This article was originally posted on the Living a Disney Life Blog