Magazine article USA TODAY

Disney Does It Again with "Expedition Everest"

Magazine article USA TODAY

Disney Does It Again with "Expedition Everest"

Article excerpt

A new adventure lies in the Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla. The recently opened Expedition Everest takes visitors on a journey through the Himalayan region to Mt. Everest. At just under 200 feet, the structure is the tallest of the 18 mountains created by Disney Imagineers, who actually traveled to Nepal so they could re-create the area with realistic detail.

Riders embark on the Anandapur Rail Service, an aged steam train that ascends the mountain in search of the mythical Yeti. However, the climb is halted just before the train reaches a break in the tracks, undoubtedly gnarled and twisted by the enraged beast. Although startled by the sight of this hopeless trail, riders surely will be exhilarated as the train races backwards--turning and twisting through the darkened mountain caverns and icy canyons--seeking to escape the Yeti's wrath.

The reverse trek and high-speed curves make this one of the most exciting coasters at Walt Disney World.

Expedition Everest Fast Facts

* The careening adventure includes an 80-foot drop and almost one mile of track, plus frightening encounters with the mystical Yeti.

* The mammoth-sized Audio-Animatronics Yeti has a potential thrust (in all of its hydraulic cylinders combined) of slightly more than 259,000 pounds of force--potentially more instantaneous power than a 747-400 airliner.

* To create the sense of an enormous mountain range, Imagineers painted a "mural" of shadows across the face of the mountains. …

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