Disneyland: September 2, 1979
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad premieres in Frontierland. The exciting new attraction has replaced the more sedate Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland. Modeled after the scenery of Utah’s Bryce Canyon National Park, this “wildest ride in the wilderness” sends guests careening through dark caverns and abandoned mines on a runaway mine train. (Additional Big Thunder Mountain Railroad attractions will open at Walt Disney World in November 1980, and Disneyland Paris in 1992, where the atrraction takes center stage in Frontierland in the midst of the Rivers of the West replacing the iconic yet distinctly American island playground, Tom Sawyer Island ).