Big Thunder Mountain Railroad Model Installed at Disneyland Hotel

Erin Glover

by , Director, Publicity, Walt Disney Animation Studios

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad Model Installed at Disneyland Hotel

As part of the ongoing updates at the Disneyland Hotel, Walt Disney Imagineering brought a special piece of Disney history to the lobby of the newly refurbished Frontier tower. A replica of the original model used in the design of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad has been installed in the lobby to be viewed and enjoyed by guests.

Of the nine plaster copies that were made of the original model, one of the few remaining copies was used by Imagineers to create the model seen in the Disneyland Hotel – so this one-quarter scale model is an exact copy of the original.

As the plaque accompanying the model reads, “This is a recreation of the original ‘Concept Model’ for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Disneyland, created by the talented artists of Walt Disney Imagineering. Imagineers use scale models such as this as a tool as they define and refine designs for projects.”

Guests can now view the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad model in the lobby of the Frontier tower of the Disneyland Hotel.

Take a look at more updates at the Disneyland Hotel:


  • What a wonderful idea! But I really hope the plaque doesn’t actually read, “This is a recreation…” Please tell me they included the hyphen in “re-creation”!

  • Wow! That’s fantastic! We were going to head over to the new Tangaroa Terrace for some of those big juicy Angus Hawaiian cheeseburgers later this week. we’ll be sure to check this out! Thanks for the tip!

  • That’s awesome!

  • I can’t wait for tomorrow!!! Is it Wednesday yet? Save me a Mai Tai!

  • That is sweeeet!

  • Sounds fantastic! I’m looking forward to seeing it.

    For non-miniature railroad enthusiasts, 1/4 scale means the model is scaled 1/4 inch per 1 foot of the attraction. So don’t expect it to stand 25′ in the lobby! 🙂

  • That is an AWESOME model!
    Is it just me (being a train guy) or did they use one of the Bachmann On30 0-4-0’s as the engine? if they did, that makes it even more AWESOME!!

  • Sorry Nathan, the loco is NOT a commercial product. The WED modelers are more talented than that. It was scratch built. It gives homage to the original Mine Train through Nature’s Wonderland that occupied the same spot where Thunder Mountain exists today.

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