This is my favorite scene. In part because it plays no real purpose except for the art of storytelling.
It’s at the end of Big Thunder Mountain, after the ride is more or less over and the train is heading back to the station.
As the storyline goes, gold was found in and around Big Thunder Mountain, located in the American southwest. The mining company established the “tiny town of Tumbleweed,” and times were good.
But, it turns out, the mountain is a sacred Native American burial site. Therefore, the area happens to be cursed.
Times continued to be good until a flash flood came along. That explains Cousin Ed — the man in the spinning bathtub wearing only his long-johns, apparently unconcerned about the calamity surrounding him.
The site is apparently now a tourist attraction — visitors can board runaway mine trains to tour the area.
This particular scene — a rail spur that isn’t actually connected to the roller coaster — reminds guests that we are in fact riding on a railroad. It doesn’t make or break the attraction, but it goes to show the level of detail Disney puts into its attractions.
The railroad’s unique locomotive names:
- U.B. Bold
- U.R. Daring
- U.R. Courageous
- I.M. Brave
- I.B. Hearty
- I.M. Fearless