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August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

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  • August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

    This week, Yesterland goes back to 1998. Tomorrowland received a major overhaul, and the star attraction was the Rocket Rods ride. It didn't stay around long.

    There was already a Yesterland page about the Rocket Rods, but it's had major overhaul too.
    Link to Rocket Rods at Yesterland.
    Please discuss the Rocket Rods here.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  • #2
    Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

    Originally posted by Werner Weiss View Post
    the Rocket Rods ride. It didn't stay around long.
    One of the few rides I'm glad made their way to your Yesterland, Werner.

    The only ride I've ever ridden only once. The only ride whose endless, boring queue was more interesting than the ride. I swear I can remember some of the queue building but NONE of the ride after being locked in. Wish I can say I passed out and that's why but I didn't.

    Two and a half-hours of my life I will never get back. :rant:



    • #3
      Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

      It was all about Single Rider, the odd configuration made for a really short Single Rider queue. The Rods were fun, but it would really be nice to see the PM come back.
      -Monorail Man


      • #4
        Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

        The only thing I remember about the Rocket Rods was seeing Walt Disney up on the Circle Vision screens talking about Tomorrowland and transportation of the future.

        I remember being intrigued by Walt, and found delight in his excitement and passion.

        I don't actually remember the ride. I do remember being told several times in line that the attraction was experiencing technnical difficulties. I remember sticking out the wait with my dad, sitting on the hard CircleVision floor watching the movies with Walt over and over again. I think I remember getting off the attraction and being disappointed, but I can't even be sure of that... maybe they finally just closed the ride and evac'd the queue because of "technical difficulties." Maybe we never got around to riding the Rods at all. I can't recall.

        But I think I owe some sort of gratitude to the Rocket Rods. No matter how underwhelming, underbudgeted, undercooked, unthought they were, the queue gave my 11 year-old self my first introduction to Walt himself. Sure, I had been visiting Disneyland nearly every year of my life, but that was the first time I think I actually understood who Walt Disney was, and that was definately a big point in my childhood.

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        • #5
          Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods


          Now, imagine hearing that all the way out to IASW. This lame duck is far and away the biggest botch in the park's entire 52 years, tied only maybe by Black Sunday, the disastrous first day of business.

          Sorry to those who liked it, but an abandoned track IS superior to this distraction mislabeled as an attraction.


          • #6
            Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

            I waited in line for it once when I visited the park in 1999. We didn't get in line until 11:30 so we got on at around 1am an hour after the park had closed.

            I thought the first two or three seconds were awesome. The rest, not so much.

            The track winding over head is a constant reminder of what used to be there and it is sad that Disneyland lost the Peoplemover. They should do something with the track. It is such a unique feature that it seems silly that it has sat dormant for so many years.
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            • #7
              Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

              Great to see this article updated with more images. It will always be a Yesterland classic!
     - Documenting the trash cans of Disney theme parks and resorts


              • #8
                Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                It was the "Viewliner" of it's era. Good riddance.
                "As usual he's taken over the coolest spot in the house"- Father re: Orville 1963

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                • #9
                  Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                  The Rocket Rods were doomed before they were built when the budget got cut back so much that they couldn't add banked turns and any interesting effects along the way.
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                  • #10
                    Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                    I always joked that the Rocket Rods was inexplicably themed to an auto-flush toilet (remember the room with the mirrors and the red blinky lights that was above the Star Tours building?). That was the extent of the theming. Good times.
                    I am grateful... grapefruit! ~ Bjork (upon winning Best International Female Artist at the BRIT Awards)

                    Founding Member of the BA!


                    • #11
                      Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                      To me, the real shame left in the wake of Rocket Rods is the loss of the Rocket Jets, and the rusty "space junk" left behind. True it was a longish wait for a short ride, but at night, the Tomorrowland lights would spin around us seemingly sycronized the beat of what ever Sunshine Balloon was playing down below. We really were in flight....over Disneyland! Everytime I look up there, my heart sinks a little.
                      Last edited by HeyBaloo; 08-31-2007, 09:17 AM.
                      Hello everyone!


                      • #12
                        Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                        Almost fun while nearly pointless.

                        And don't forget the "special effects" when leaving some of the buildings. The most stupid of us could do better with $5,000 and a trip to Spencer gifts at the mall.

                        Wheeeee, we're going we're slowing....hey something to look a......oh, fast again.

                        A bientot.
                        What the dormouse said
                        Feed your head!


                        You've read it; you can't unread it!


                        • #13
                          Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                          I think they could have engineered the ride to go faster without banking the track if the ride vehicles could be made to roll from side to side in place...would take some engineering but probably cheaper than trying to bank all of the corners.

                          Still, Im glad they didnt because now there's hope they'll bring a new peoplemover type ride back!
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                          Parks Visited: MK - EPCOT - DHS - DAK - DL - DCA - HKDL - TDL - TDS


                          • #14
                            Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                            I don't think the track could have taken it.

                            I remember at the Tomorrowland monorail station watching the monorail beam shaking back and forth whenever a rocket rod went by. And the rocket rod track, itself, would shake a lot. Always made me wonder how long the infastructure would last, as it certainly wasn't built with the idea of supporting a fast-moving thrill ride.

                            I remember them adding the new trackwork and all, but I don't recall ever seeing any work done to brace the support pylons of the old peoplemover trackway...


                            • #15
                              Re: August 31, 2007: Rocket Rods

                              All that speeding up and slowing down really made for a poor overall experience. And the only good seat was right up front, otherwise you just saw the back of the person in front of you, as I recall. Rode it twice, once using front-of-the-line passes we received after breaking down on Space Mountain. Glad this finally made it to Yesterland, now we need the People Mover out of Yesterland and back at Disneyland!

                              Thanks for the memories Werner!


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