Monday, July 06, 2015

The Astro Jets, October 1962



This October 1962 image of the Astrojets attraction in Tomorrowland yields not one, not two, but FOUR detailed views! What a great overview the Skyway provides of the Flight Circle!



This poor little Boy Scout/Cub Scout was probably hoping to see a show; unfortunately it appears that the Flight Circle is on break. Dig those models all lined up on display ready to fly for the amusement of the guests.



The gigantic Thimble Drome thimble, with the souvenir hat stand in the background:



A closeup of one of the Astrojets Jets; note the little girl ducking down. She can't take the view!



Fast forward to August 1970; "new" Tomorrowland is three years old by this time, but the Rocket Jets are still a thrilling attraction located high on top of the PeopleMover platform.



Not for those who have a problem with heights!



The present day incarnation of this attraction:



Which version do you prefer?

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8 comments:

K. Martinez said...

I think it's a forgone conclusion as to which version most fans prefer. For visual impact, theme integration, ride placement and thrill capacity there is only one clear winner among the three. And it's from the version of Tomorrowland most fans of our generation prefer.

Now if Disney were going to bring back one of these, I'd love to see the Astrojets placed on top of the PeopleMoer Platform like seen in an old rendering from Walt's era. It would combine the retro look and feel of the Asrojets with the height and thrill of the Rocket Jets. That might be cool.

It's nice to see these all in one post. Thanks, Dave.

K. Martinez said...

And another thing. The Rocket Jets had a gantry lift (elevator ride) before you boarded your "rocket". Talk about carrying a theme through. The Astrojets and Astro Orbitor didn't have that. Why oh why did Disney go backwards in 1998?

Dan Heaton said...

I loved the '70s style version at both California and Florida, though the color schemes in the original are amazing! Sadly, the new version is the least inspiring. Great photos!

Fifthrider said...

Agreed with all above. I'm grateful for those of us who got to experience this. Also, the modern Tower of Terror was never as scary ( to me ) as the old rockets on top of the tower. As a child I screamed my head off and fought to get off it. Yes, I was "that kid." sorry. Looking back I wished I could go ride it one more time without crying and hiding.

That gantry elevator up... Wow. That was kind of the cherry on top of the sundae. I think we all loved it better, but if it were still like that it wouldn't be Tomorrowland, it would be "Yesterday's-Idea-Of-Tomorrow-Land." I hope they can do something that makes me love this land once again, until then, we have the past of Tomorrow.

MRaymond said...

I rode the Rocket Jets ONCE. I couldn't get my butt up that gantry elevator when I was a kid (1970s). Strangely, the height of the Peoplemover never phased me a bit. My one trip on the Rocket Jets was a bet I lost with my girlfriend (1993). I can't remember what the bet was but my heart was racing the entire time. When I got off the jets the CM asked me if I was all right (I must have looked like hell). If they put it back up on the PM platform I would ride it again (after some Dramamine). :) I don't miss the girlfriend but I miss not going on the jets again.

Darryl R said...

Luckily, my wife and I are heading to the Park in September, which made me think...what rides have I never rode on? The Astrojets are one, not sure why. The early version sure has a Gemini feel to them.

Looks to be a whole troop of boy scouts...or at least 3.

Anonymous said...

Just a wild thought as I was looking over the pictures...is the basic ride structure still that of the original Astro Jets (with parts replaced many times over of course)?

KS

Blossom Nose Murphy said...

Thanks for posting this! I don't think I've ever noticed those mid-century modern murals on the buildings. They look like Matisse cut-outs or Calder type prints. Very cool!