Sunday, June 17, 2012

A New Disney California Adventure: Radiator Springs Racers

Due to reader response, my series about the grand re-opening of Disney California Adventure will start with the dessert: The Radiator Springs Racers attractions. Those of you who haven't been on it yet and don't want to have your experience changed by spoilers should skip today's post. For the rest of you: buckle up and let's go!

The photos you see are a mix of opening day (June 15) and "the day after," when I actually road the attraction. Even though I'd been watching the progress of the construction, I never fully comprehended the artistry of what was being created until the first night that I saw it.

Besides the top-notch rock work that was done, this area is probably one of the most successful examples of forced perspective that I have ever experienced. The backdrop for this attraction is absolutely jaw-dropping.

I will admit that although I love both, I definitely have an affinity for this area at night. The lighting is classic Disney: spectacular and magical!

For the short amount of time I had on Saturday, I joined up with the Tours Departing Daily trio and had a blast standing in line with them.

As you can imagine, all four of our cameras got a workout.

None of us minded the wait, which ended up being about two hours. Anyone who goes to the park with me knows I will not wait more than 30 minutes for an attraction. This one was well worth the wait. Kudos to the Imagineering team for the top-notch attraction queue experience. So much to see!

The excitement was palpable every time we saw an attraction vehicle racing over the crest of the hill towards us.

Check out that bank! The excitement kept building as we inched up the queue.

Descriptive signage tells you what you are marveling over.

The landscaping is perfection; looks very natural, as if it had been there for years.

What a finish!

These vehicles may look stopped, but I can assure you they were whizzing by...I believe these are going about 40 mph.

I was in geek heaven with all the signage along the way, appropriately rusted to look vintage.

Make sure you pronounce this correctly.

Knotts isn't the only park with a bottle house!

You can see why I easily blew through 2000+ photos in a few days.

And now for the attraction. Our patience was rewarded as we boarded our vehicles.

I couldn't believe I was actually about to ride it; I figured I'd have to wait until September for the lines to die down. Looking up at these majestic falls was incredible.

I loved the dark ride portion of the attraction (duh!).

Unlike its Nemo counterpart across the way, it was the perfect blend of video effects and animatronics, with plenty of time to absorb what you are seeing.

Don't get too comfy in dark ride land...this baby zooms off into the wide open spaces of Radiator Springs! No braking allowed on this attraction!

And then sadly, it was over. Let me stress it though...this is definitely a worthwhile experience. No minute or two wham-bam attraction. If I hadn't had a train to catch, I would have waited in line again.

Congrats! You made it!

Thanks to the TDD gang, I have a record of my first journey...bad hair and all!

Stay tuned for more Disney California Adventure updates!

See more Radiator Springs Racers photos on my Radiator Springs Racers web page.


K. Martinez said...

Thanks for the update! I'm headed there this week (Tues thru Thurs.) I can't wait.

Main Street said...

I'm a big fan of your blog (I read it every day!) and I love your appreciation for all of the little things in the parks.
I just wrote a post over on my blog about my love for Disney and what it means to me. Would love for you to read!

Major Pepperidge said...

Looks pretty neat!