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Disneyland Railroad: Grand Canyon Diorama

posted on October 21st, 2010 by Paul Hiffmeyer, Chief Photographer for Public Relations, Disneyland Resort

You’ve probably already guessed that the trains are one of my favorite subjects to photograph at Disneyland park. Besides bringing back the great memories of riding the train around the park when I was a boy, there are some really interesting sights and sounds to be enjoyed when you’re on the Disneyland Railroad.

In my first train post of this series, I asked what your favorite part of the Disneyland Railroad is. Well, mine has always been the Grand Canyon diorama, and since we couldn’t locate any archival photos showing the diorama with a train, I decided to take one myself to share with you here on the Disney Parks Blog.

So, turn up Grofe’s “Grand Canyon Suite,” sit back, and enjoy… “The next leg of our trip takes us along the rim of the Grand Canyon. The wildlife around here is rather sheepish, so please, no flash photography.”

Grand Canyon Diorama

If you think of it, the next time you ride the trains, let the Engineers and Conductors know how much you appreciate all that they do to keep these beautiful historic steam trains running. They also make these photos possible.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort



Samantha on October 21st, 2010 at 3:11 pm

That is a really great picture! 😀


Amy on October 21st, 2010 at 3:12 pm

Amazing photos, as always! Thank you for sharing!!


Julie from CA on October 21st, 2010 at 3:14 pm

What a great perspective! Thanks for sharing.

I hope someday Disney puts out a book from the Disney Photographers. Tips and Trick at the Disney Theme Parks, because I know I always learn something as a photographer from Disney photos.


Josh on October 21st, 2010 at 3:15 pm

Is that the train without any passenger cars on it?


Dave on October 21st, 2010 at 3:21 pm

I love the railroad. I accidentally had my flash on when taking a picture in the tunnel, and sure got reminded! lol


David on October 21st, 2010 at 3:35 pm

I would sure love a high resolution copy of that. Wallpaper!


Mary on October 21st, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Mary from Santa Barbara, CA
I love going on the train at Disney. Not only for the little rest to take the train on the opposite side of the park. But to see all the park offers and the Dreams Walt had. This last trip to Disneyland in Aug 2010 we were on the last car next to the Lilly Belle Train so my husband took a few pictures and I will cherish those pictures for the rest of my life, like the pictures that are taken by the photography for Disneyland, that should be made in to a book where the guest could cherish them as well.


Kayleen from CA on October 21st, 2010 at 3:57 pm

This is my fav of the train ride, as well! Love this cat!


edwin on October 21st, 2010 at 4:09 pm

yeah i think its only the train front car. Since shooting photography in very low light you need to shoot with non moving objects so that might be one reason . Looks great i love the train and i love the photography. amazing it would be awsome to be a photographer for disneyland … i wish one day :) I love the dinosaur part :) so old fashion im happy they kept it :)


Fred from CA on October 21st, 2010 at 4:27 pm

Very nice!


Lawrence on October 21st, 2010 at 5:10 pm

I have found that the conductors are the best source of information on the park. A very un-tapped resource…


Andrew on October 21st, 2010 at 5:15 pm

Love the trains, the Diorama and your pictures. Post some dinosaur shots, please. What’s more fun than Disneyland?


Sandra on October 21st, 2010 at 6:21 pm

I tell folks all the time, you have to ride the train all the way around because there’s something more to see, after the last land stop and before you get to the station.
I love train travel no matter how short the trip. :-) Love this photo!


Don on October 21st, 2010 at 6:53 pm

Wow, Paul your railroad photos get better with each post! Thanks for sharing!


Jessica on October 21st, 2010 at 8:25 pm

Paul, you always take such amazing pictures! Keep em coming!


Cory from AB on October 22nd, 2010 at 12:12 am

Fantastic shot!

The diorama has a special place in my heart. At first, I had a kind of “hohum” attitude to it… The dinosaurs were really what sparked my imagination. Then I found out that there was an actual historic steam train that ran from Williams, AZ, to the Grand Canyon. I did manage to go and ride the steam train, and I loved every second of it, crediting the adventure to the DLRR.



Karen from CA on October 22nd, 2010 at 1:48 am

I always had to go on the train to see this. I still enjoy it.


Daniel on October 22nd, 2010 at 2:20 am

Great pics of the Disney RR the train at Disneyland is so much better then the train at WDW
Thanks keep them coming.
Daniel D.


Nancy on October 22nd, 2010 at 10:16 am

Great picture! My family loves riding the railroad at night. We look forward to it – it’s relaxing & beautiful


Penny on October 22nd, 2010 at 11:58 am

This series makes up some of my very favorite posts on the Disney Parks Blog.


Krista on October 22nd, 2010 at 12:08 pm

Such a wonderful shot. I love the train and the grand canyon feature. I also love the dinosaurs. I am so glad they keep it the same it never gets old to me.


Juan-Miguel from CA on October 22nd, 2010 at 2:22 pm

I love the treat of getting to see the America Sings guys inside Splash Mountain without getting wet! :)


Greg on October 22nd, 2010 at 3:47 pm

Great photo. Love this series…and love those steam trains! If I’m not mistaken, the train in this photo is the engine only, correct? I don’t see the passenger cars.


Catherine on October 26th, 2010 at 6:56 pm

Beautiful photo. Although the recording and the conductor said no flash photography,the warnings didn’t stop the guy in my row from taking a flash picture every 10 seconds.