As the first Space Mountain
to open, Walt Disney World
's version is what most people think of when you mention the name. Space Mountain was originally planned for a new section
but ended up seeing the light in Florida
first. The concept of a completely dark and indoors roller coaster
was new to the world
, but mostly stemmed from necessity
. Florida's weather
often shuts down outdoor roller coasters, so building one completely covered was the obvious next step.
The building that houses the coaster was designed to be included in a "SpacePort" addition to Disneyland. In June of 1966, the name "Space Mountain" was coined. The building reaches 15 feet under ground, 300 feet in diameter, and towers 183 feet in the air, taller than Cinderella's Castle.
Walt Disney World's Space Mountain has two tracks that are near mirror images of each other. The left track is 10 feet longer to accomodate for one to cross over the other. The left side (Alpha) is 3196 feet long and the right (Omega) is 3186 feet long. The large drop toward the end of the ride is 35 feet long.
There are 30 6-person cars in Walt Disney World's Space Mountain. In order to board one of these cars, one must be at least 44 inches tall. Riders ride one in front of the other with each rider having his or her own lap harness.
The length of the ride and the speed at which it travels depends greatly on the time of day and the weight of the cars. Early in the morning, when the ride has freshly opened, the cars do not move as swiftly. Grease that has congealed on the wheels overnight causes them to be a bit sluggish. By nighttime, the grease has liquified a bit causing less friction and producing faster speeds. Also, the heavier the people in the car, the faster it travels. While Space Mountain in Walt disney World reaches max speed at 28 miles per hour, it can pick up a few more under the right conditions. Average trip length is 2 minutes and 47 seconds.
Two years after Walt Disney World's Space Mountain opened with much success, Disneyland's version opened in 1977. However, it was not a copy by any means. Walt Disney World's version was meant to provide Florida guests with a Matterhorn-like experience with many unexpected sharp turns. Since Disneyland had the actual Matterhorn itself, there was no reason to make another similar ride. Instead, Disneyland's Space Mountain was based on speed and flying through space.
Opening under sponsorship of the Disneyland Aeronautics and Space Administration (DASA, not real), Space Mountain offered Disneyland guests a new thrill. This one-track coaster sends guests across 3450 feet of space at a maximum of 30.2 miles per hour for an average of 2 minutes and 45 seconds. Like Walt Disney World's coaster, ride times and speed are largely based on the time of day and the weight of the car.
There are 13 cars in Disneyland's Space Mountain, each capable of seating 12 passengers, 2 side-by-side. One must be 40 inches tall to ride this attraction.
The building housing Space Mountain is 117 feet above ground (including the spire), 17 feet below, and 200 feet in diameter. Space Mountain's largest drop is 15 feet long. Music was added to this version of the attraction in 1996, largely due to the success of music featured in Disneyland Paris' Space Mountain. The bulding itself was repainted in 1997/98 to match the rest of the rehabbed Tomorrowland.
Tokyo Disneyland's Space Mountain is nearly identical to that of Disneyland minus the on-ride audio. The building itself is approximately the same size and the tracks are nearly identical. It opened with the park in 1983, becoming the only Space Mountain to open at the same time as the park in which it's located.
It takes approximately 2 minutes and 45 seconds to cover the 3450 feet track at a maximum of 30.2 miles per hour. There are 12 trains in this version, as opposed to 13 in Disneyland. Each train holds 12 passengers, 2 side-by-side.
Because the Disney Company doesn't own Tokyo Disneyland the sponsor for Tokyo Disneyland is different. Your Journey Through Time and Space is sponsored by Coca-Cola.
Disneyland Paris' Space Mountain is by far the most different version of this classic attraction. From the beginning, it was destined to be different. Walt Disney Imagineering not only designed but also built the other three versions. This one, however, was built by a company called Vekoma. It is the only Space Mountain to feature inversions and a launching system and is much more similar to thrill rides of today.
Space Mountain in Paris opened in 1995 featuring state-of-the-art ride mechanisms and a new look. It is themed to fit the rest of Discoveryland (Disneyland Paris' version of Tomorrowland), which is all based on ideas of Jules Verne. Space Mountain here is the only one featuring a subtitle: "de la Terre à la Lune," which translates to "from the earth to the moon," the title of a famous Verne story. Inside, the themeing continues throughout the ride, including props along the queue as well as during the ride.
This version of Space Mountain was the first to feature scored music, composed by Steve Bramson. It also features several inversions: a 360 degree sidewinder loop, a corkscrew, and a 180 degree "tongue/horseshoe" inversion. It reaches speeds much higher than the other 3 Space Mountains, maxing at approximately 43.5 miles per hour. The ride length is around 2 minutes and 27 seconds long covering 3280 feet of track.
The beginning and end of the ride also differ greatly from the other 3 Space Mountains. As in the Jules Verne story, riders are shot out of a giant cannon on the exterior of the building, feeling up to 1.3 times the force of gravity as they accelerate. They fly into space and soar on their way to the moon. At the end of the ride, guests come to a screeching halt as they reach their final destination back on Earth.
Passengers must be 55 inches tall to ride this intense attraction. 24 guests can fit in each train with 5 trains operating at once. Each seat contains 6 speakers, including one subwoofer, playing back the digital music recording.
The building containing this monster of a roller coaster is 141 feet tall with another 16 feet under ground. Its diameter is 200 feet.
all information directly obtained from www.realdisney.com