PHOTOS: Crews Start Patching Holes in Splash Mountain Façade at Magic Kingdom for Tiana’s Bayou Adventure Transformation

Shannen Ace

PHOTOS: Crews Start Patching Holes in Splash Mountain Façade at Magic Kingdom for Tiana’s Bayou Adventure Transformation

After completely removing the tree atop Splash Mountain, crews are hard at work on other areas of the closed Magic Kingdom attraction as they turn it into Tiana’s Bayou Adventure.

Splash Mountain Flume

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A dozen crew members were gathered around the flume at the bottom of the attraction, where the welding curtains have been taken down.

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It looked like they were discussing the rockwork to the side of the flume.

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Much of the rockwork had been cut away early during the demolition process. The hollow interior was cleaned and then new steel wire mesh was installed over the openings.

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Thin sheets have been draped over some of the mesh, which acts as the base shape of the rockwork.

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The tarps rolled up to the sides are used to cover the openings when work isn’t going on.

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A few weeks ago, crews repainted the track in this area, too. Actual track doesn’t run through the whole flume, but this is right after the ride’s drop, and the track helps the logs stay on course.

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In addition to set changes and tree removal, landscaping around the mountain will make it look more like a Louisiana bayou.

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Of course, the thorns of Splash Mountain will be removed as well. They are hidden behind construction walls, so actually may already be gone.

Splash Mountain Top

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Speaking of construction walls, we took a look over the Tiana’s Foods-themed walls up at the top of the mountain, where we saw more crew members.

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The large tree at the peak of the mountain is gone, and crew members have been moving scaffolding around the area for different work.

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It looked to us like they might have been cutting into the mountain more.

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This smaller tree on the side of the mountain, next to the flume, remains but is surrounded by scaffolding. The Tiana’s Bayou Adventure model displayed at D23 Expo showed no trees on the mountain. The model was technically for the Disneyland version of the ride, but we expect the general look to be the same.

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The giant hole in the front of the mountain is now covered, as seen in the bottom center of the photo above. We could previously see straight into the mountain’s supports, and then steel mesh was added.

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The hole is now covered in light gray material. This may be a sheet, like what we saw on the mesh next to the flume, and another layer could be installed before it’s repainted to look like the rest of the rockwork.

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Scaffolding covers most of the mountain now, including parts of the back that we can barely see.

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Some long roots of the giant tree remain on the top of the mountain, so crew members are likely going to remove those next.

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There is no scaffolding around this other small tree yet.

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Walt Disney Imagineering recently filed a permit for set installation at Splash Mountain / Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. This could be for interior sets or the Tiana’s Foods water tower seen in the model and art.

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Splash Mountain Side

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Near the entrance to Splash Mountain, it looked like some of the rockwork had been freshly painted.

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More scaffolding and scrim had been installed over here.

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These rocks were looking particularly orange.

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We didn’t see any crew members over here at the time.

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We could get another look at one of the mountain’s trees from down here, and even see the crew members at the very top.

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Splash Mountain Queue

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From the Walt Disney World Railroad, we took a look down into the Splash Mountain queue.

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Some SkudoBoard was leaning against the barn. SkudoBoard is used to protect the ground from construction vehicles. A yellow cart was parked in front of it.

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Earlier this month, we saw crew members shoveling dirt from inside the barn into a pile outside. The interior flooring of the barn had been torn up.

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Since then, the dirt pile has been covered in a tarp and surrounded by blue net fencing.

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Large steel poles were sitting next to the dirt during this recent trip.

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We also saw stacks of wood nearby, with a ladder sitting on top.

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The window and doorway of the barn are blocked from view with black tarps and a wood board.

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The shutters were removed from the window a few weeks ago.

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Splash Mountain closed permanently in January at Walt Disney World and is scheduled to close in May at Disneyland. Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is set to replace both versions of the attraction in 2024. Read our complete history of Splash Mountain for a look back at the classic log flume ride.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

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Tiana’s Bayou Adventure invites you to embark on a thrilling voyage, influenced by the beloved film, “The Princess and the Frog.” It picks up where the story concluded and includes many of the characters from the movie.

According to the official release, Disney states guests will “join Princess Tiana and jazz-loving alligator Louis during Mardi Gras season as they prepare to host a one-of-a-kind celebration for the people of New Orleans.” The story will feature Louis and a few other good friends enjoying zydeco, a musical fusion of rhythm and blues native to Louisana.

The new attraction will take place inside Tiana’s Foods, a co-op that helps provide food for the community. Founded in 1927 by Tiana, the co-op is located within a salt mine, where cultivators grow crops along the former path of Splash Mountain’s waters. Visitors will ascend to the co-op through a mill house that is constructed into the mountainside, enjoying the sights and sounds of the Louisiana bayou.

Read more details about Tiana’s Bayou Adventure using the links below:

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Author

  • Shannen Michaelsen

    Shannen has been a Disney Parks fan and lover of dogs since childhood, despite Pluto's attempt to eat Shannen's Minnie Mouse doll the first time they met. They've made up now. You can email Shannen at shannen@wdwnt.com.