Animal Kingdom’s Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My!

Expedition Everest

Early Re-Opening

After a lengthy refurbishment, Animal Kingdom’s Expedition Everest has finally re-opened. Originally slated to re-open on April 30th, Disney delighted guests visiting for the Easter holidays when they re-opened early on April 16th.

Stranded Guests / Grouchy Yeti

Animal Kingdom's Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My! Tips 1
Credit- Disney

Unfortunately, the Yeti may not have been too happy to be woken from his slumber early. Yesterday guests were stranded at the ride’s highest point just after the Yeti Cavern. Cast members had to come to the rescue and were greeted with applause and gratitude from the stranded guests.

Animal Kingdom's Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My! Tips 2
Credit- Disney

Not to worry though. This sort of thing tends to happen from time to time and Disney has a stringent safety evacuation procedure at the ready. Some guests even mentioned how cool it was to get to see behind-the-scenes areas. A set of drop-down stairs that run alongside the track allowed guests to exit safely and with quite a view!

Animal Kingdom's Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My! Tips 3
Credit- Disney

All guests were given Lightning Lane Passes for a ride of their choice and bottled water and sent happily on their way. I guess some Yeti woke up on the wrong side of the cavern! Hopefully, he will start behaving in time for my next Expedition Everest ride.

Related- Be a Wilderness Explorer at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Lightning Lane Changes

Guests using their Genie Plus App may also notice that Expedition Everest is now included in regular Lightning Lane. It used to be an individual purchase option but will now be included in the $15.00 standard Lightning Lane charge. Yes, sometimes prices do go down at Disney!

Ride Description

Expedition Everest first opened in Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park on April 7th 2006. It is the tallest of all of Disney World’s “mountains”. If Expedition Everest was a real mountain it would be 4th on the list of the highest summits in Florida at 320 ft. above sea level.

Expedition Everest was 6 years in the Imagineering process. Imagineers took many trips to the Himalayas to study the design, culture, and history of the area as well as collect stories about the legendary Yeti from locals. It’s reflected in every detail. From the time you enter the line until the time you board and even in the area you exit through. It’s one of my very favorite places in all of Animal Kingdom to take pics and just meander through.

Animal Kingdom's Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My! Tips 4
Credit- Disney

As you make your way through the line you will come across a shrine to the Yeti. Further down you will see museum-like displays housing artifacts documenting the Yeti’s presence in the area. There is quite a bit of storytelling going on here. There is a mention of a “lost expedition” that ran awry while encountering the Yeti while trekking through the Forbidden Mountain Pass.

Once the trains arrive at the station to pick up guests and the adventure begins. One of the highlights of the ride is the brief but thrilling encounters with the Yeti. Joe Rohde was the lead Imagineer for the ride and has stated that the Yeti is one of the most complex creations he has ever built and was based on extensive research of descriptions given by locals in the Himalayan region.

Animal Kingdom's Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My! Tips 5
Credit- Disney

The Yeti has been stationary for quite some time following the ride’s original opening causing speculation as to why it hasn’t been repaired yet. Fans and strobe lights give the Yeti a sense of movement. During your brief encounter, it’s hard to believe that the Yeti is not indeed on the move.

Related- Disney’s Expedition Everest

Animal Kingdom's Expedition Everest in the News. Early Re-Opening, Changes, & Guests Face the Yeti! Oh My! Tips 6
Credit- Disney

I do have one question though. What’s with the hair ties? Have you noticed that when you get to the top of the mountain where the tracks are torn apart right before the reverse launch that on the right side there are a LOT of hair ties/rubber bands? Is the Yeti having a bad hair day? Is it a sacrifice to the Yeti in exchange for freedom?

I used to be so scared of coasters. I still am afraid of heights but I am so glad I finally got up the courage to ride Expedition Everest. It’s one of my favorite rides and the first ride I usually head to the minute I enter the park.

Have you ever braved the Yeti?

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Here are some of my favorite things to bring on my WDW Travels!

Thank you for reading this article. I hope you found it helpful as you plan your magical vacation. Here are some things that I used on my own magical trips and I hope you’ll also find them helpful as well.

These are affiliate links, so if you do decide to use any of them, I’ll earn a commission. But in all honesty, these are the exact items that I use and recommend to everyone, even my own family.

General Carry Items: These are probably some of the most important things that everyone should have with them at Disney World.

A Good Pair of Disney Sunglasses – (I use this cheap pair all the time)

Every Day Chapstick – (I always have this on me anyway)

Sunscreen – (This is my Every Day Carry Sunscreen Ladies)

Park Bag: I’ve seen lots of people go to Disney World and make the simple mistake of not coming prepared. You can pick up a nice Loungefly park bag like this one and save the day for your family.

A Good Pair Of Sandals: Ladies, there’s nothing like a good pair of sandals like these in the parks. That way when it rains and your feet get wet you aren’t stuck walking around in a wet pair of sneakers all day.

Portable Neck Fans: These are just the most amazing little invention that you NEED to have at least for the kiddos. They charge via USB and are highly recommended, especially if you are going in the summer heat. You can check them out over here on Amazon.

Planning Your Trip: I know that planning a trip can be a lot. If you want more help planning your next trip I 100% recommend using The Vacationeer as a travel agent. They go above and beyond for their clients and they are the only ones that I can say that I would trust to plan my family’s travel.

Moving Near Disney!?: Well, we did! And we could not have done it without the help of our Realtor Victor Nawrocki! Victor knows the area and all the little ins and outs that no one else will tell you. He’s not just here to sell you a house, he wants you to actually enjoy living here! If you want to talk with an EXPERT about living near Disney World then I highly suggest you give Victor a call today at 407-340-9375 or check out all his links at disneyatyourdoorstep.com. Make sure you let him know that WDW Travels sent you!

Joey Tarsan

Joey is a Florida native . Mom of 3 wonderful special needs teenagers, and recently married to her soulmate in a epic Star Wars wedding. Joey enjoys spending her time exploring the parks with friends and family and has a slight obsession with Ewok's and Mickey Ears.

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