History of Maelstrom

History of Maelstrom

History of Maelstrom - DisneyDayByDay

We continue our tribute to Maelstrom this week as it sets sail this weekend.   Let’s go back to when the ride was first being imagineered, what was this attraction going to be called?

You are not the first to pass this way, nor shall you be the last. Those who seek the spirit of Norway face peril and adventure. But more often find beauty and charm. We have always lived with the sea, so look first to the spirit of the seafarer.

Disney and the Imagineers were looking to bring the first thrill ride to EPCOT.   As guests passed through the 1000 foot long flume ride they would encounter many mythical creatures including gnomes and trolls.  The adventure would take you in search of the Rainbow Bridge to Valhalla.   Valhalla is a mythical, majestic, and enormous hall located in Asgard.    Our favorite Sherman Brothers were even engaged to develop the song for the attraction.  How fun would that have been?

As the ride progressed the Norway sponsors asked that the attraction be updated to contain more information on what Norway had to offer to promote tourism rather than mythological creatures/adventures.   So the story line was changed to take guest through the history of Norway beginning with Norwegian Folklore and ending with modern day Norway (an oil rig?).

Maelstrom set sail on July 1988 and will cast off for the last time on Oct 5, 2014.  Now to answer the question – Maelstrom was originally going to be called SeaVenture this was change even before construction started.    How many of you remember the smoke affects on the original attraction, these were in a couple spots: the troll scene and in the area where the boat is reversed.   These smoke machines were the largest on property at the time and really gave you that mythical feeling.

If you like history photos – click here for some from the Disney Parks Blog showing the construction of Maelstrom.

Disney Parks Blog - Maelstrom

Copyright Disney Parks Blog

Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia : Maelstrom Troll

Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia : Maelstrom Troll

Maelstrom - how many heads - DisneyDayByDay

We continue our tribute to Maelstrom this week as it sets sail this weekend.    As you make your way through this attraction your boat encounters a few trolls along the way.    One of these trolls is pretty upset and makes your boat disappear, back, back, over the falls.    How many heads does this troll have?

You are not the first to pass this way,
Nor shall you be the last.

Those who seek the Spirit of Norway face peril and adventure,
But more often find beauty and charm.

The answer is 3 – pictured below.

Maelstrom Troll - DisneyDayByDay

Hidden Mickey Monday – Maelstrom

Hidden Mickey Monday – Maelstrom

Our Hidden Mickey this week is a tribute to an attraction that is closing this week to make way for a Frozen attraction.   Maelstrom!   You can read more about it here, but Maelstrom will sail it’s last voyage this Sunday, Oct 5th, 2014.  Yes it’s hard to say good bye, but we look forward to seeing how they incorporate Frozen into Norway.

As you stand in line for this attraction there isn’t a lot to hold your attention besides the huge mural on the wall.    And, what better thing to do with a mural at Disney than try to find where some Imagineers might have placed some Hidden Mickey’s.   Here are a few that we have found.   Please share any you have found in the comments below.

Hidden Mickey - Maelstrom - 1

Hmm here are some hints on where to look….

Hidden Mickey - Maelstrom - 2

Let’s start from left to right – the one on the far left is our favorite.   Of a viking in a viking ship wearing a set of Mickey Ears – see that one here.

The next one is in the middle – here you find a fishing boat that has some uniquely placed fishing net floats (in reddish color)

Hidden Mickey - Maelstrom - 3a


Our final Hidden Mickey takes us to the one marked on the right had side of the mural and always the most difficult for me to point out to others.  This Mickey is setting on it’s side with ears pointed to the left, look just to the left of metal clip on her clip board.

Hidden Mickey - Maelstrom - 4

 Hi Mickey!!    We love  Hidden Mickey‘s, let us know where you have found him on Maelstrom before we have to say good bye to this attraction.   
If you would like one last ride – here you go….

Frozen Attraction and Soarin Updates

Frozen Attraction and Soarin Updates

Frozen taking over Maelstrom at Epcot - DisneyDayByDay

With the announcement of Frozen taking over the current Maelstrom attraction at Epcot the thoughts quickly go to what exactly will Disney do to bring Arendelle to Norway?

First the facts – Maelstrom will be closing Oct 6, 2014 to make way for a new frozen attraction.    Yes, I know boooooo

As for what this attraction will be – there is a lot of speculation at this point, but no announcements from Disney.   From what we hear there are three concepts under consideration, as you can imagine its budget based to see which one is selected.

  • Cheapest – re-theme the current attraction system, maybe instead of trolls “Back Back over the falls” – we would be brought into the North Mountain area where Elsa does not want us and pushes us away over the falls.
  • Middle of the Road – they could also update and expand the current boat attraction. There is a lot of land between Mexico and Norway in which to expand.  This was originally marked to be another land, but could be used to support an expanded Norway.   This area (pictured below) is currently home to many temporary cast member structures.
  • Most expensive – how about a trackless dark ride, maybe something similar to the Mystic Manor at Hong Kong Disneyland where the attraction vehicle can stop and change direction at different moments in the ride.   This option would require an expanded area as the current building could not support a large dark ride.

Room for Frozen to Expand in Norway - DisneyDayByDay

Reading online you can definitely feel that many are upset to see one of our favorite classic Epcot attractions go away.   I’m sure that this was well thought out by those at Disney and it is not a decision that any of us can change.   So let’s look forward to the new attraction.   What would you like to see?   How would you incorporate Frozen into the current ride layout?  Let us know in the comments below.

In other Epcot news / rumors – there has been a lot of activity in the area behind Soarin.   This area similar to the open area between Mexico and Norway has been home to temporary cast member structures.   In the last few weeks these structures have been moved off their foundations in preparation to move them out of the area.    This area is rumored to be used to expand Soarin to have 1 or 2 more theaters.   Though there has been no official announcement on this the area is large enough and seems easy enough to just add these on.    Rumors say that the opening of the new theaters would coincide with the new film Soarin over the World which is set to debut in 2016.  These theaters will definitely be needed with the excitement of the new film.   Soarin over the World will find us traveling to England, France, Italy, Egypt, India, China, Japan, and for the U.S.A: the Grand Canyon and New York – all I can say is there better be oranges and pine trees involved.    What is your favorite Soarin scene or smell today?

Expanding Soarin at Epcot - DisneyDayByDay