Friday, November 18, 2016

Monorails From the Parking Lot, June 1963

Here are two wonderful photos taken from what might have been the most-loved parking lot in the world, each featuring great Monorail views! 

Let's start with this one, with the red four-car Mark II Monorail. It's adorable! Though perhaps not quite as adorable as the Mark I version. There is room enough in my heart for both of them. We're looking toward the southwestern corner of the park - if you clambered through the thorny rose bushes and hopped the chain link fence, and climbed the berm, you'd be in the vicinity of a tropical jungle. Watch out for crocodiles.

At first I thought the lady with the red and white striped shirt might be a parking lot attendant, but now I'm not so sure. There's no cap (the Disneyland costumers loved hats), and those red sneakers don't look "regulation". But I suppose it's still possible.

This next view is kind of "WOW" for me, evoking so many of the feelings that I experienced upon  arriving at the park. This time we have Monorail Blue passing overhead - ain't she a beauty? The freight  train is at the station, and we can see some nice attraction posters on the Monorail pylons (Golden Horsehoe, Flying Saucers, Tiki Room).  Notice the tour guide loitering out front (just to the right of the boy with the red shirt)!


Graffer said...

Two great pics. The increasing anticipation in the parking lot caused by the teasing sights and sounds from the park is still a vivid memory of the pre-DCA Disneyland trip. To be so close but still outside was joyous agony. "WALK FASTER! NO, NO TRAM - TOO SLOW! HURRY UP - LETS GET INSIDE!..." I can still feel it.

TokyoMagic! said...

I can also recall that excitement of approaching the entrance to the park!

Major, there is another tour guide in front of the entrance in that second pic. She is to the right of the Flying Saucer attraction poster. There might even be a third one just to the left of the Enchanted Tiki Room poster. I see what looks like more red knee high socks and possibly a red vest. Maybe when Guided Tour sales were slow, the guides were sent out front to try and "sell" the tours to arriving guests? I can picture them being very aggressive in their sales techniques.....just like used car salesmen, but with riding crops.

K. Martinez said...

Great pics of the monorails over the parking lot. Now all we need is a Mark II Monorail Gold parking lot pic to complete it. Graffer said it perfectly about the anticipation when approaching Disneyland in the parking lot. Thanks, Major.

Alonzo P Hawk said...

Wow these are awesome! Fantastic friday post of the (inches from the parking lot) entry plaza.

The only thing more drooltastic (for me)than the vintage entry plaza, monorail blue overhead, attraction posters and the plaid clad tour guide is the (correct me if I'm just dreaming nanook)Nova 2 door ragtop in front of the camper. I've been looking for a 60's Nova and have yet to decide which one of my children I need to sell to afford one that isn't rusted through. Thanks for posting.

Scott Lane said...

Loving these!
As far as the girl being a parking attendant - isn't that guy leaning on the golf cart also in a red-striped shirt?

Chuck said...

I'm digging that little passenger scooter at the extreme right on the first photo. It could carry two, maybe three PAX facing to the rear. I wonder who rated special treatment like that?

DrGoat said...

It's the turquoise Nomad in the first shot. We had a Nomad station wagon back in 63, which we drove to Disneyland from Tucson many times. Great images Major.

Major Pepperidge said...

Graffer, that was the greatest feeling!

TokyoMagic!, yes, I think there are two other tour guides. The whole plaid schoolgirl skirts with the riding crops were an interesting choice! All of the husbands would say, “Gee, honey, make we *should* take one-a them tours!”.

K. Martinez, the photographer didn’t capture Monorail Gold, unfortunately. Perhaps it wasn’t running on this particular day?

Alonzo, I’m not sure I’ve heard the term “entry plaza” before. We’re surrounded by cars, aren’t we still in the parking lot? My old room mate had a blue ’67 Nova with a “straight six”. It finally gave up the ghost after many years.

Scott Lane, yep, I think you are right! That’s what I get for only looking at the thumbnail when writing the posts.

Chuck, the little scooter is cool, but now I’d want to ride the regular tram to complete my retro experience.

DrGoat, over the years I have gained a new love and appreciation for old station wagons - they weren’t cool in their day, but I think they’re cool now.

Unknown said...

Mmm, delicious Friday goodness there, Major. I enjoyed identifying the six attraction posters in the first shot as well. I'd name them, but who needs to around this august company. And I think there might be a Tour Guide in the first shot as well. The place was just lousy with them that day.

Steve DeGaetano said...

Of course, while some see attraction posters, Nomads and attendants, I would be remiss for failing to point out that the Fred Gurley is pulling the Holiday Red/Retlaw 2 freight train (a somewhat unusual pairing). Beautiful shots today!

Nanook said...


In picture 1 from left to right, is an 'aqua' 1958 [Biscayne or Bel Air] Chevrolet; up in the next aisle is a 1961 Oldsmobile; then back up-front is a 1961 Ford [Galaxie]; then back up to a 1960 Rambler; to its right is a bluish 1953 or 1954 Ford; and finally back up front is a 1962 Oldsmobile.

Starting on the very far right, is a whitish/pink, 1960 Plymouth; then a light brown, 'infamous' 1959 Chevrolet [Bel Air]; then the "coveted" 1962 or 1963 Chevy II. (Was the convertible option only available as a Nova-?) That camper shell is appended to a 1960 Ford pickup. And that's blocking a red, 1963 Rambler.

But none of 'em are really as swell as either Monorail-! Thanks, Major.

Anonymous said...

It was a few years before my time, but that gal in the first pic indeed is wearing the Parking Lot uniform of that era. Amazing how pictures can resurrect 'forgotten' memories. KS

Anonymous said...

These are wonderful. Thank you, Major.