Trail of Terror is a newer haunt, only in its 3rd season, and this was our first time visiting. We were SUPER excited because haunted trails are our absolute favorite! We arrived a little late, in true Haunt Junkies fashion, which actually worked in our favor because we missed the huge crowd of haunt-goers that were lined up all the way to their parking lot earlier!
A thick layer of fog enveloped the clearing in the woods as we approached. The heavy metal music that pumped through the speakers, coupled with the dark woods sprawled menacingly around us set a very unnerving atmosphere. As we made our way into the clearing that held the queue line, we stopped at a little snack truck to get our tickets. We passed through a picnic area with seating around a cozy bonfire and a few photo ops, but didn’t stop because it was late, and we were eager to see what this trail had to offer!
At the entrance to the woods, we were greeted by a carnie of sorts who warned us about the terrors we would face on the trail and that we may not be make it out alive. This cinematic intro added to our anticipation (and dread) so through the black curtain we went! We were surprised to find ourselves in a pitch-black, enclosed space instead of the expanse of woods we expected. As we navigated our way through the blackness, we realized we were in a small claustrophobia-inducing tunnel. Fear of the unknown set in as we blindly felt our way along, wondering who or what may be lurking in the tunnel with us! There were definitely scares in there and in the next tunnel that followed that was a completely different feel yet equally as scary.
After the tunnels that seemed to be portals into this haunted forest, we continued along the mile of haunted trail through dense, dark trees. The way they incorporated lighting to keep us on the trail without compromising the engulfing darkness was really awesome! The different scenes were pretty spread out along the trail leaving quite a few dead spaces but walking through the woods at night can be an unsettling experience in and of itself! With the exception of the few truly terrifying tunnels, most of the scenes were not elaborate structural builds but instead cleverly used the woods as their backdrop.
The first half of this trail easily gets 5 ghosts; but unfortunately, it started to go downhill the further along we went. Costuming and make-up were generally appropriate in each scene, but not super detailed or elaborate. There were a couple characters that really stood out (or blended in) that scared the hell out of us in the woods, but only a couple. The bulk of the actors were teenagers who did more screaming than scaring. This works in some cases, but because Trail of Terror lacks the sets, props, and/or animatronics to supplement, the responsibility for scares lies solely with these actors. Haunting ain’t easy and is even more difficult with that level of dependency on actors, so being on you’re A-game is a must! We could easily tell the few who were more experienced haunters; they were creepy as hell and knew how to use their surrounding environment. For the newbies, the overall desire to be scary is definitely there, just not the know-how… yet. We’re looking forward to these new haunters getting more seasoned!
We really appreciated their enforcement of COVID-19 safety protocols. Trail of Terror requires guests to sign waivers and have their temperatures checked prior to entry. The use of face masks is recommended but not required as the vast majority of this haunt is outdoors.
Trail of Terror is located on a HUGE piece of land, so they definitely have the room for growth and development, and we are HERE FOR IT!!! It seems like they have the vision, and we can definitely see the potential, now it’s just learning how to execute. We would love to see a larger midway area, more elaborate/detailed sets and scenes, and bigger, enclosed builds along the trail. With that said, this is certainly a haunt to watch! Be sure to take your very own scary stroll down the Trail of Terror this haunt season!