Big Thunder Mountain Railroad re-opened a couple days ago and we got our first chance to check it out tonight. Unfortunately, it didn’t receive the long-rumored explosive finale scene that Disneyland has, but there were some noticeable changes.
Among the changes were added path lights to the exterior queue, working smoke stacks on the queue building roof, paint touch-ups in the queue (and mountain), blacklight effects and spotlights in the lift cave, and general lighting improvements on the mountain and geysers. The ride also seemed a bit smoother, which would make sense given that we were able to see some new looking track sections during the refurbishment.
Overall, this was a modest refurbishment from what was rumored. We would have loved to have received an East coast version of what they have in Disneyland, but it wasn’t in the cards this time. The improvements that were made, made this an enjoyable night ride, and I would suggest riding at night over daylight next time you find yourself in Frontierland. With the refurbishment running more than three months long, we can only hope that some groundwork was laid to shorten the time it might take Imagineers to add the explosive finale in the future.