I first off want to state that in the many years I worked at Disney, one of my favorite tasks to do was rope drop. My dear friend Suzie is a we mystery be there at rope drop kind of person, and personally I agree.
This year marked the 3rd time I had ever been to Disneyland and the second time staying on property. We stayed at the Grand Califoria and I will always stay there from now on! I figured this can happen since I only go about once every 7 years. It is completely worth paying the extra to get in for extra magic hour.
Our first day was Disneyland, we were able to ride 70% of our must ride list by 10am! Even though it was a sold out weekend, for the first two hours it was as if we had the park to ourselves. Early Magic hour is also key because a Disneyland is very old school and doesn’t have a lot of places with fast passes. I personally feel this was a great bonus, and that Disneyworld is over flooded with them so it’s not as enjoyable as it once was.
The Matterhorn, we waited about 5 mins!
For Space Mountain it took us longer to walk to the start of the ride than anything else, it was a ghost town!