The first room you enter is the game room. There are tables and chairs for you to gather around. Some of the tables have game board within them. At night this is also where they show movies to anyone that would like to be present.
Along one wall is this great railroad map. Along each line you see Mickey Mouse and friends portraying key historical events. Everything from Mickey as a gold miner in Nevada, to being in the movies in California to defending the Alamo in Texas.
The detail is wonderful and I recommend spending some time in front of this painting.
The good stuff comes next. One one wall is an actual piece of film of Walt on his Carolwood Pacific Train.
The inscription reads:
Original 35 mm Motion Picture Negative and Print
Walt Disney running his Carolwood Pacific Train
Filmed by Roger E. Broggie in 1950 at the Disney Carolwood estate in Holmby Hills, California
The other wall contains a painting of Walt working in his train barn.
Under the painting is a plaque that reads:
Walt Disney’s Magical Barn
Barns played an important role in the life of Walt Disney. From the time he was a young farmboy Marceline, Missouri, where he produced his first “show” in his family’s barn — a circus for the kids in the neighborhood — to his Carolwood Pacific Railroad barn at his home in Holmby Hills, California, his happy place was always a simple barn.
In this oil painting by renowned artist Bob Byerley, Walt is shown working in his barn on his one-eighth-scale live steam engine Lilly Belle. A young boy appears at the door, beckoning Walt to come outside and join his older brother as they wave to the operating engineer aboard the steam puffer as it crosses the trestle. Notice that Walt isn’t making eye contact with the boy. Because, the boy is Walt and he’s recalling days long ago when he and his older brother, Roy, would greet Uncle Mike Martin as he pulled the train into Marceline on it’s run from Fort Madison, Iowa to Kansas City on the Santa Fe line.
In the lower left corner of the painting there’s a portion of an engineering drawing of a Main Street Train Station designed for a themed amusement park that was a magical dream in formation. Look closely at the wristwatch: there are no hands. So, while Walt remembers his past , enjoys a present, and anticipates his future, above all, he remains timeless — as long as his memory is kept alive.
Once you walk through the game room you will find yourself in a cozy room with a fireplace meant for relaxing.
One of the wonderful details is the iron works train in the fireplace screen. It is is a little bit whimsical and reminds me a bit of Casey Jr.
In front of the fireplace are some chairs for you to enjoy but behind those chairs sits a gem. There are two cars and a bit of track from the Carolwood Pacific Railroad. These pieces were donated to the Wilderness Lodge by Walt’s daughter Diane.
If you take a closer look you can actually see the Carolwood Pacific Railroad logos on the cattle car and gondola. They are stunning.
You can just imagine Walt pulling these cars behind him as he rides on the engine he named “Lilly Belle” after his wife.
Other Railroad Memorabilia
As you exit the fireplace room you will notice a cabinet tucked next to the wall. Take a moment to look inside. It is filled with a lot of Railroad Memorabilia.
Model trains and historical photos line the shelves.
I hit the highlights of the room but there are so many other things to explore there. There is railroad memorabilia everywhere. You are sure to find even more hidden gems.