Monday, July 08, 2013

You Are There: Jungle Cruise 9/3/58

The quality of these September 3, 1958 images are not really stellar; however, they do offer an amazing glimpse of the Jungle Cruise as it appeared at that time. This little time capsule of Adventureland is presented in the order that the slides are numbered. Unless this guest took a few consecutive spins, these images should give a pretty good idea of the order of each scene. Note on the original attraction poster that this attraction was referred to as "Jungle River" and not "Jungle Cruise."

This little lanai scene near the entrance still exists, albeit in a different style:

Back to 1958! Notice the ape/gorilla hiding in the thicket of the trees?

Today, he's looking for bananas...much less menacing!

The natives, circa 1958:

And how they look today:

The hippo scene doesn't appear to have too many changes, so I'll spare you the comparison shots and speed up the page load time!

Back in 1958, there was no designated African Veldt scene, but there were a few giraffes...

and the feasting lions.

Schweitzer Falls, aka "The Back Side of Water" has been slaying 'em since opening day.

Today, it uses less water to do so.

Our intrepid photographer only captured one African Bull Elephant:

Today, the elephant on the left is surrounded by a lot more foliage:

The Rhinos were a casualty of progress, and are no longer seen on this attraction.

The Ancient Shrine provides an air of mystery...

and the spider web provides the creeps! Is the treasure worth the possibility of encountering the giant spider?

Today the treasure is gone...

and the spider has moved away, leaving the shrine unprotected:

Even though I'm not a fan of snakes...

having the snake looming overheard would really add a bit of a thrill to the ride today:

Instead, the only snake that you'll find on the attraction now is towards the end, coiled away from guests by a very safe distance:

A few gators/crocs (I never could tell the diff):

Some very young Jungle vegetation:

The last numbered slide of the JC set appears to be the rainforest scene, judging by the large butterflies on the branches in the center.

Thanks for taking a spin with me on the 1958 Jungle River attraction!

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K. Martinez said...

If I remember correctly the ape/gorilla scene from 1958 was replaced with the python & water buffalo scene near the end of the attraction.

What replaced the Rhinos? Was it the Gorilla Camp scene?

I wonder why they replaced the menacing crocodile with bananas and a lantern in the current gorilla scene? Must've been cheaper having one less audio animatronic I guess.

These vintage slides are actually pretty nice. Thanks for posting.

Major Pepperidge said...

Now that's a lot of Jungle Cruise photos! I've always wondered why the poster said "Jungle River"... maybe that was the early name for the attraction?

Anonymous said...

Judging from the pictures, my impression is that the jungle seemed more of an adventure and 'wild' than todays version. KS