These are a few of my
– Mission Space
No doubt many of you will have
read scary things about this ride, but as a Class ‘A’ wimp I
can tell you that it is awesome, and not to be missed!
Having said that, you should always take notice of the
warnings that Disney give before you embark on this ride,
and if you have any health problems, then do think twice
before you do it.
After ‘Soarin,’ it is my second favourite ride, and, whilst
offering a very extreme experience, for some unknown reason
I just love it – which is strange as I cannot bear even the
most gentle of roller coasters. Perhaps it is the fact that
it is a simulator, and I know that whatever happens I cannot
be thrown out, turned upside down or sent hurtling down a
steep slope at 60 miles an hour or more! I also know that,
as long as I follow the instructions to keep looking out of
the spaceship’s ‘window,’ then I won’t feel ill either. My
only grumble is that it is much too short.
I love everything about Mission Space, from the beautiful
exterior of the building, with its stunning architecture, to
the 3 orbs dominating the Planetary Plaza. The first is, of
course, Planet Earth, with the Mission Space logo and a
spaceship taking off. The second is the moon, with markers
showing the 30 landing sites of moon missions between 1959
and 1976. The third is a large coloured globe. All around
this area there are plaques with quotes from people involved
in the space race, for example, from John F Kennedy – ‘We
set sail on this new sea because there is knowledge to be
gained,’ and ‘Dare to Dream’ by Kalpana Chawla, the US
astronaut who died on Columbia in 2003, as well as ‘Reach
for your dreams…..the sky is no limit,’ spoken by Barbara
Morgan, a teacher/astronaut.
As you wait inside you can see the fascinating interior of
the Space Simulation Lab, an enormous gravity wheel which
spins continuously, and where you can see how astronauts
live and work, whilst you queue. I am all too impatient
during the pre-flight briefing, and can’t wait for the doors
to open, and to stand on our allotted space before we lead
the way to our space capsule. Once inside, you must settle
into your seat and pull down the over-the-shoulder harness
restraint, and then the whole thing tips you backwards ready
for blast off.
Looking out of the ‘window’ it is fascinating, and a little
scary, to see the launch platform in front of you – then you
hear the roar of the engines and you appear to travel up the
ramp until you are pressed into your seat by enormous
G-forces – up to 2.4G. You are literally pinned to your
seats, and the pressure on your chest is quite scary, but
absolutely brilliant! It’s an astonishing illusion, and
feels utterly real. They even manage to simulate a brief
period of weightlessness before you are on your way, helped
by a slingshot around the moon, to a landing on Mars.
All four of the crew have certain jobs to perform, and as
you can imagine, with Disney there is always a trick up
their sleeves – but I won’t spoil it by telling you what
that is. Needless to say it is a heart stopping moment, and
something nearly goes horribly wrong.
Now if you think this would be too much for you then you can
join the Green Team, and take part in a much tamer ride,
where the centrifuge does not spin. But it is a bit too tame
Some wits have named this ride the ‘spin and puke’ ride, and
Disney has provided sick bags just in case. But honestly,
thousands of people ride it every day, and incidents are
few, bearing in mind the huge numbers who experience this
ride. If you are worried, don’t do it, or maybe take a
couple of travel sickness pills before you embark on your
flight to Mars. In fact, claustrophobia is probably more
likely, as the capsules are quite small and tightly packed.
But don’t feel bad is you ‘chicken out’ at the last minute –
you can always go through to the Advance Training Lab, where
you can play various video games, while you wait for the
rest of your party.