|Location||The Polar Express route|
|Visitors||Hero Boy, Hero Girl, Conductor, Smokey and Steamer|
|The Polar Express Route|
Flat Top Tunnel
Glacier Gulch is a location in The Polar Express movie.
Role in the Film
With a 179° grade, Glacier Gulch is, according to the Conductor, the "steepest downhill grade in the world." The Polar Express once went too fast down this roller-coaster-like track after Steamer broke the engine's throttle cotter pin, causing the train to speed out of control.
Before the train goes down the track, the Conductor tells Hero Boy and Hero Girl to hold onto the safety bar while using the ropes from Hero Boy's robe to tie them to the bar to keep them from falling off. After the train reaches the bottom of the gulch, it speeds over a roller-coaster like bridge. While that happens, the pin comes out of the vent it fell into and Steamer catches it in his mouth, only to swallow it after the train goes over another hill. The train then ends up on the Ice Lake.
Later, when Hero Boy, Hero Girl, and the Conductor get back to the passenger cars, Know-It-All, who had experienced the events from inside the train, thinks Hero Boy missed it and tries telling him about it. However, Hero Boy is uninterested and heads to the observation car.
- Glacier Gulch does not appear in the book, though at one point, when the train was travelling through mountains and valleys, it was compared to a roller coaster.
- In the film, a sign says the gulch has a 179° grade. However, a vertical drop is 90°, so it would make more sense for it to say 89°.
- Production designer Doug Chiang initially went more realistically in designing Glacier Gulch and made the hill less steep. However, when Robert Zemeckis saw it, he encouraged Doug to make it more extreme like a roller-coaster.
- The Art of the Polar Express, p. 68
|Grand Rapids, MI||Grand Rapids, Michigan • Hero Boy's House • Herpolsheimer's • 11344 Edbrooke Avenue|
|The Journey||Flat Top Tunnel • Glacier Gulch • Ice Lake • Corkscrew Mountain • North Pole Bridge|
|North Pole||North Pole • North Pole Square • Communications Room • Wrapping Hall • Sorting Room|