Loading the Columbiad

Disneyland Paris' Space Mountain began as a concept about shooting a rocket from the Earth to the Moon.  It makes sense with Discoveryland's retro-future steampunk motif that the device used to make the interstellar launch is named The Columbiad, after both the 1800s cannon and the device in Jules Vernes' From the Earth to the Moon used to shoot objects to our celestial neighbor.

The visuals when Space Mountain: Mission 2 launches are pretty fantastic.  The roller coaster train cruises into the sloped hill and then stops.  A arched vaulted door rolls up, revealing the train to daylight, similar to the action of loading a bullet into a rifle.  It closes, and then the train hurtles up and into the main ride structure.  And why not?  It has been shot just like a projectile, only its destination is the stars!

This beautiful display marks the storyline name of Space Mountain at Disneyland Paris--the rocket launcher to the stars.


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