Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Magic Mountain August 1973 - Part 2

If you missed part 1 of this 3 part series, be sure to view it here (link). Thanks again to Dave over at Daveland for getting these magenta gems to shine some color thru again. This was extra nice of Dave considering he hasn’t been to the Mountain in about 30 years! Tatsu is calling your name Dave!

Up first from this set of August 1973 slides is the much photographed Sky Tower. This is an unusual angle, taken from the far north end of the park, not the usual entrance angle.

The bottom right has my beloved Metro Monorail running in all its automatic electric glory. Right up front is the Galaxy double twisty thing and in the distance is Billy the Squid spin and vomit ride, Goliath sits at that spot now.

A couple souvenir prints, (left) The Swiss Twist (recently removed, RIP) with the Galaxy in the background, (right) the Galaxy at night, weeeee.

The Metro Monorail on the right – BRING BACK THE METRO (link). And the great bumper boat ride “El Bumpo”. My grand memories of this ride are slow, unresponsive, hard to steer boats and a smell from that lake that’s hard to describe.

A neat postcard of people trying to have fun on El Bumpo.

Looks like this was mailed in June of 1975. I guess they weren’t impressed with Magic Mountain since they don’t even mention it!

Check out the cars, I want them all! They still use those trams!

Here are a few shots of the Jet Stream. This “modern” flume ride is pretty new here; it was not at the park when it opened in 1971 being added in 1972. I have always liked this ride, it’s still fun today. However, you won’t be going down the left or “west” side anymore, some years back they stopped using that side of the final drop, it’s still there, just not used, why? The Ninja Suspended Roller Coaster changed this view dramatically when it was installed in the 80's.

Valencia grass used to be everywhere at Magic Mountain, it will always be my main memory of the early mountain. (I have no idea if it’s really called “Valencia” grass, that’s just what I call that long wavy grass that doesn’t need to be cut.)

This slide got a little over exposed, but still fun to look at the new Jet Stream Launch tent. This load and unload system uses a turntable like the old people mover ride, super efficient.

From a postcard set, here is the Jet Stream as seen from the ground.

A 1973 “cast member”. I think she’s pretty, is she a waitress?

Here’s a great early Magic Mountain souvenir reflector badge. I wasn’t sure it would scan since you have to tilt it to see both messages, but it scanned ok. “Get high on fun” simple yet to the point, seems much better than “just say no”.

Check back next Wednesday for part 3 from this set.


Unknown said...

again... awesome stuff from my beloved Magic Mountain (I worked there in 1979-84 in the Parking Lot Trams, Metro, and Guest Relations). The waitress picture is actually a waitress at the Four Winds Restaurant atop the mountain...which was a really great, high-class fine dining restaurant with entertainment. Alas, its gone now too.

Daveland said...

Of course I was about 5 the first time I went...ha! Great post!

Major Pepperidge said...

Wow, these sure bring back a lot of memories! Wonderful slides. "El Bumpo" looks like it owes a lot to Disneyland's Flying Saucers, even the moveable dock that squishes the boats together to end the ride is like the saucers.

TokyoMagic! said...

Do you happen to know why the Galaxy was removed so early on in the park's history? And do you know if there are any other rides like it in existence today? I always wanted to go on that ride, but I never got a chance. I remember seeing all the "cages" sitting on the ground backstage while riding the Spilikin Corners train in the early 80's.

jedblau said...

I LOVE these Magic Mountain posts!

Unknown said...

Hi... The Galaxy was removed for two main reasons: wind and cost. The ride required a large contingent of ride operators to operate it and lots of specialized ride mechanics to maintain it... costing a fortune. In addition, to add insult to injury, the ride could not be operated during the fairly windy Valencia weather, keeping the ride's operating throughput very low....again costing a ton of real estate,
resources, etc. It did look great though! The Galaxy was a two armed
ride (it had two arms with several rotating arrays of
arm could be up while the other was being loaded/unloaded). I dont
know of any operating examples of the two-armed style. The Great
America parks in Gurnee, Il and Santa Clara, CA had the THREE-armed
version of this ride operating there since they opened.

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Hi All,

Jeremy; The Four winds was a great restaurant, neat that’s where she is from! I think it was a Pizza Place last, but it’s very closed now… Sad.

Dave; You gotta hit the Mountain again! The gang/thug problem seems to be mostly gone, and I know there are some great photo ops for you fancy camera!

Major; I would say that the Flying Saucers had an profound influence in “El Bumpo” and from what I’ve heard about he Flying Saucers, El Bumpo worked about as well. I can still smell the two-stroke fuel fumes and that great “fresh” water lake…

TokyoMagic, looks like we got a great answer! I did ride the Galaxy in 1972, my grandpa convinced my to go on it, it was scary (I was only 7) and I never rode it again. The space is still there, it’s used by two attractions now, the Buccaneer and a swing style ride, I believe they use the same cement platforms as the “twin” Galaxy did.

Jed! Glad to hear from. I hope your recovery is going well, you have my good thoughts and prayers.

Jeremy (again); THANKS for the great information!!! Do you know if the “Galaxy” ended up anywhere else? I found the Mountain Express still operating somewhere in Mexico!!!

Yellows said...

Great post! Magic Mountain stopped using both sides of the Jet Stream almost as soon as it opened, but the twin chutes were supposed to be the big reason to ride. I remember brochures talking about "the only double-down chute in the West." Guess that unused side is just a Valencia version of the Peoplemover track!

Westcot2000 said...

TokyoMagic: The Galaxy was an Intamin Double Ferris Wheel. I believe the first IDFW was installed for the opening of Houston Astroworld in 1968 (16 cabins).

Check out for an Intamin Catalog featuring a different model of an IDFW which used a less attractive armature that doubled the ride height! The catalog also features other Magic Mountain classics like the Crazy Barrels, Sky Tower, and Flashback

24 gondola IDFW's were installed at King's Island (later moved to Australia's Wonderland), Hershey Park, etc.

Rumor has it that the new management has plans to restore fine dining in the next couple of years.

The picture of the Jet Stream also shows the "double-down" runout which was soon changed to a flat runout.