Expedition Everest Reopening Date Announced: The Yeti Returns April 16

by | Apr 14, 2022 | Animal Kingdom, WDW Blog, WDW News

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After months of being closed for refurbishment, Expedition Everest has a reopening date at long last: April 16, 2022.

Each year, Walt Disney World temporarily closes some of its attractions for much-needed maintenance. Fresh paint and nice tidy-up can do a ride some good.

Unfortunately for guests, that means their favorite attraction may not be open during their visit. One of Animal Kingdom’s most popular rides, Expedition Everest, has been closed since Jan. 4.

Disney told us that Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain would reopen in mid-April, but we never got a firm date. Turns out, Disney’s estimate hit the nail on the head. The beloved roller coaster reopens on April 16, just past the month’s halfway mark.

Expedition Everest Reopens, Disco Yeti Remains

Disney still hasn’t officially released the Expedition Everest reopening date, but astute fans noticed on the Disney World website that the ride suddenly had opening times posted on Saturday, April 16 — and every day after.

expedition everest reopening date april 16 - disney

Expedition Everest reopens April 16. Screenshot: Disney

On the first day of reopening, Expedition Everest will welcome guests starting at 7 AM as part of early entry hours (resort guests only). The ride will then operate from 7:30 AM to 8:30 PM that Saturday.

expedition everest yeti

The Yeti is still immobile after Expedition Everest refurbishments. Photo by Cliff Wang

Alas, if you were hoping that this 3.5-month closure meant that Disney would finally fix the structural issues preventing the Yeti Audio-Animatronic from terrorizing riders, you’ll be disappointed. The Yeti remains immobile — and likely always will.

Expedition Everest Joins Genie+

Earlier this year, Disney modified its list of Individual Lightning Lane Selections. When Genie+ launched in October 2021, each of the four parks had two of its most popular rides listed as a la carte Lightning Lane selections, meaning paying the $15 for Genie+ could not get you Lightning Lane access to those.

But in an effort to spread out the insane crowds the parks have been experiencing lately, Disney removed one Individual Lightning Lane ride and added it to the Genie+ list at EPCOT (Frozen Ever After), Hollywood Studios (Runaway Railway), and Magic Kingdom (Space Mountain).

expedition everest forbidden mountain hill

Expedition Everest will join Genie+ list for the summer. Photo by Laurie Sapp

Because Expedition Everest was one of the two Individual Lightning Lane Selections at Animal Kingdom and has been out of commission for months, Disney did not make any changes to the Genie+ lineup there.

But with Expedition Everest reopening, Disney is moving the roller coaster over to the Genie+ lineup until Aug. 7, meaning you won’t have to pay extra for Lightning Lane access to this returning coaster. Avatar Flight of Passage will be Animal Kingdom’s only Individual Lightning Lane ride.

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Written by Timothy Moore

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Boom baby! Timothy Moore is excited to serve as a WDW Magazine contributor and resident Disney Renaissance expert. When he's not drinking around the world at EPCOT or gobbling down Mickey Waffles for breakfast, he can usually be found with his partner hiking and kayaking the great outdoors, putting off writing his novel by playing Nintendo Switch, or telling his dogs Goomba and Blooper that they're the best boys in the world ad nauseam (because they are).
Timothy Moore

Written by Timothy Moore

Boom baby! Timothy Moore is excited to serve as a WDW Magazine contributor and resident Disney Renaissance expert. When he's not drinking around the world at EPCOT or gobbling down Mickey Waffles for breakfast, he can usually be found with his partner hiking and kayaking the great outdoors, putting off writing his novel by playing Nintendo Switch, or telling his dogs Goomba and Blooper that they're the best boys in the world ad nauseam (because they are).
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