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  1. #1

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    Lightbulb Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    It seems inevitable that "Pirates Lair at Tom Sawyer Island" is a go. Many have already expressed concern about how to transport guests to the island when the level of interest skyrockets past its current levels come next May.

    Quote Originally Posted by Al Lutz
    It had been reported elsewhere that the current capacity of the two new rafts Disneyland has for customer use was only 55 passengers per vessel. But the actual number as regulated by the Coast Guard is a maximum capacity of only 45 passengers per vessel. With both rafts running the hourly capacity of the rafts over to the island is limited to around 750 riders per hour. That's a fairly horrible number to work with, along the lines of the hourly capacity of a small dark ride like Pinocchio or Snow White. Since the island has to close at dusk and begin preparations for Fantasmic!, that's only around 8 full hours of operation in the summer, and even fewer during Daylight Saving Time. An average summer day when Fantasmic! is scheduled for the evening could see less than 6,000 visitors per day make it over to the new pirate island.
    I have a (relatively) simple solution. Make the Mark Twain serve as transportation to the island.



    How so? Guests would still board the Mark Twain from the station in Frontierland. However, once the boat gets halfway around the Rivers of America, past New Orleans Square, there is a path on the island that comes right to the edge of the water, near Fort Wilderness and just across from the Hungry Bear eating area. This would become a new riverboat dock. The Mark Twain would make a stop here, and guests can get off to explore the island and come on board later, or just stay on for the trip.

    With a passenger load of 390 guests, and assuming the riverboat can make about two full round trips in an hour (including the time spent loading and unloading at both ports) and also taking into account that not necessarily everyone gets off at the island, the Mark Twain has the potential to put around 600 guests on the island and take back 600 guests to Frontierland every hour.

    If the allure to visit Pirates Lair is especially tremendous (as it no doubt will be for the first weeks and through the summer) and every means of transportation is needed, the Mark Twain could go to mandatory disembarking at every station. However, the flip side could also be true; if there is a particularly slow day when the rafts can manage on their own or whenever Tom Sawyer Island is closed, the second station would simply not be used and the Mark Twain would make a full round trip, no stops. Of course, guests would be informed of this at the Frontierland station and at Tom Sawyer Island as well.

    There are a couple of logistical things with this system of operation that would need to be worked out. First and foremost, the Mark Twain itself doesn't have a 'gate' on the starboard side to let people get on and off. As far as I am aware, that could be built without too much of a problem (certainly more easily than the Sailing Ship Columbia, which I am not even considering; more on that later). Next, is the Mark Twain close enough to the island at that particular point to make a dock possible? I can't quite picture if it is or not, but I'm pretty sure. Re-routing the track in the river is out of the question of course. Lastly, what would happen to the Sailing Ship Columbia when both boats are operating at the same time? Well, as far as I can figure, it would just sit in the station until it gets the clearance from the Mark Twain that the riverboat has continued on its way. And one last thing- while the Mark Twain is sitting at this new Island dock, it wouldn't be getting in the way of Davy's Canoes, would it?

    Is my idea too far-fetched? (Personally, I consider it one level below building a bridge/tunnel over/under the RoA.) Who here is offended? Confused? Indifferent?
    Last edited by 2DieFR; 11-29-2006 at 04:06 PM.
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  2. #2

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by 2DieFR View Post
    Is my idea too far-fetched? Who here is offended? Confused? Indifferent?
    I was going to post that this was a stupid idea, but I changed my mind. It isn't THAT bad. If they ran the Mark Twain and the Rafts at the same time it would certainly inrease capacity to the island.

    The only problem would be the wait. If it takes a significantly long time to load and unload at both docks - and the Mark Twain can only make two trips per hour - then the guests waiting at each dock could wait upwards of 30 minutes to get on the boat. Probably after 15 minutes most of those people would head over to the rafts which would have a tremendously long line.

    Other than that though...

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Not all that good. The problem is that there would have to be a point that the Twain would have to stop taking people over in order for them to get back in time. THe slow speed of the Twain, as mentioned above, makes it a rather short operating time in that respect.

  4. #4

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    How would this work when the Columbia is in operation?

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by Scream162 View Post
    How would this work when the Columbia is in operation?
    Quote Originally Posted by 2DieFR View Post
    What would happen to the Sailing Ship Columbia when both boats are operating at the same time? Well, as far as I can figure, it would just sit in the station until it gets the clearance from the Mark Twain that the riverboat has continued on its way.
    It's not as if the Columbia is up and running all that much anyway...only selected busy days of the year.
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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by 2DieFR View Post
    Not that the Columbia is up and running all that much anyway...only selected busy days of the year.
    It's up like every weekend. And how can the Columbia ship stay docked with the rafts behind it transporting people?
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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by hollywood1939 View Post
    how can the Columbia ship stay docked with the rafts behind it transporting people?
    It's like I was saying. The Mark Twain leaves Frontierland port. The Columbia sails into the station a few minutes later and begins unload/load. Meanwhile, Mark Twain is at the TSI dock and unload/load. This will require the Columbia to wait at Frontierland port for a while, until the Mark Twain is fully loaded and continues around the back half of the river. Then the Columbia can leave and do a full, nonstop trip around the RoA (while Mark Twain is unload/load at Frontierland port of course.) And the cycle repeats.

    It's really quite simple.

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by 2DieFR View Post
    It's like I was saying. The Mark Twain leaves Frontierland port. The Columbia sails into the station a few minutes later and begins unload/load. Meanwhile, Mark Twain is at the TSI dock and unload/load. This will require the Columbia to wait at Frontierland port for a while, until the Mark Twain is fully loaded and continues around the back half of the river. Then the Columbia can leave and do a full, nonstop trip around the RoA (while Mark Twain is unload/load at Frontierland port of course.) And the cycle repeats.

    It's really quite simple.

    That would result in bad ride counts, somehow I don't see this happening.
    -Jack
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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    I think Disneyland is going to be more concerned about the bad ride count of Tom Sawyer Island than that of its fleet of boats circling it. I'm not suggesting that this be a permanent change by any means - just an alternative when it is needed.
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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    I think the idea isn't half bad. My only problem with it is that the Twain ride around the Island always seemed to me too short......it's only barely long enough to make believe you really are traveling on a riverboat in the 1840s Missouri wilderness....with a "stop" right in the middle of that wilderness the illusion might be shattered.
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  11. #11

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by sleepyjeff View Post
    I think the idea isn't half bad. My only problem with it is that the Twain ride around the Island always seemed to me too short......it's only barely long enough to make believe you really are traveling on a riverboat in the 1840s Missouri wilderness....with a "stop" right in the middle of that wilderness the illusion might be shattered.
    Real riverboats, while it's true that the excursion would be much longer, stopped at many ports of towns and other places along the river. I know some might hold the view that the Mark Twain should be solely for scenic views and relaxation, but the idea of boarding the riverboat one place and then getting off in another appeals to me because it's like you really did travel - again, not very far, but it's like you really boarded the riverboat like passengers did in the 19th century for the purpose of travel. It's sort of like how the Alweg Monorail used to be a one-stop, Tomorrowland-to-Tomorrowland trip, but then the route was expanded to the Disneyland Hotel and became a useful method of transportation.
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  12. #12

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    How would this affect the Canoes running during the summer? I am not sure what the right of way is on the river, but I assume that the big boats have it. I like the idea, I just do not think it would work too well. I think it may be easier and cheaper to just build another dock on both sides of the river to service TSI. I seem to remember that a long time ago that there was two docks on the island? Anybody know?

  13. #13

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by sleepyjeff View Post
    I think the idea isn't half bad. My only problem with it is that the Twain ride around the Island always seemed to me too short......it's only barely long enough to make believe you really are traveling on a riverboat in the 1840s Missouri wilderness....with a "stop" right in the middle of that wilderness the illusion might be shattered.
    The problem I see, that this issue poses, is how do you guarantee that people who get on at Frontierland are going to get off at TSI? And also, would you allow people to board the Mark Twain from TSI to go back to Fronteirland? There is also the problem that there will be people who do not wish to get off at TSI and just want to ride it around and around in order to lengthen their trip. People already do this with the trains. While I think this idea is really unique, I think the only way this will work as originally intended is if everyone who gets on at Frontierland gets off at TSI and everyone who gets on at TSI gets off at Frontierland.

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Why not a new fleet of keel boats, once a Disneyland staple, to ferry guests to the island? These belonged to Mike Fink's River Pirates anyway! Also, they are not tied to a track, so could maneuver to the island without rerouting everything, as would happen with the large ships.

    ...and they look good too.

    http://www.yesterland.com/keelboats.html
    Last edited by merlinjones; 11-30-2006 at 10:23 AM.

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    Re: Solution: Make the Mark Twain Serve as Transportation to TSI

    Quote Originally Posted by merlinjones View Post
    Why not a new fleet of keel boats, once a Disneyland staple, to ferry guests to the island? These belonged to Mike Fink's River Pirates, anyway! also, they are not tied to a track, so could maneuver to the island without rerouting everything, as would happen with the large ships.

    ...and they look good too.

    http://www.yesterland.com/keelboats.html
    I agree. LEAVE THE MARK TWAIN alone, I say. Good heavens - could imagine the chaos trying to load and unload a triple deck boat. MY GOSH!

    Get new keel boats - right on Merlin Jones!

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