Trail of Terror in Shakopee: How to Avoid the Lines
Halloween haunts top my list of favorite things. I love the adrenaline rush of being scared. I’ve found the Trail of Terror in Shakopee in one of the most elaborate. But if you don’t go with a plan, you’ll find yourself in a mile long line and missing half the attractions. That’s why I’ve come up with the perfect priority list of attractions you need to hit up first.
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The Trail of Terror in Shakopee Priority List
Priority 1: The Haunted Maze
The biggest draw to the Trail of Terror in Shakopee is the Haunted Maze. They call it the MAZE OF MAYHEM. It’s not really a maze because you follow a designated path that winds its way through the building. It is the largest heated indoor maze in Minnesota. Because of the popularity of this attraction, go as soon as you can.
Before entering the Maze, you’ll have a quick security briefing. To sum it up, “no touching actors, we won’t touch you,” and the “no pictures or phones out.” They admit people in small groups to scare you easily. But no matter how much they try to do it, you almost always meet up with the group in front of you. My biggest recommendation, if you want to be scared, take it slow, or it will dampen your experience.
The maze itself had some good scare zone, as I like to call them. They trick you to feel comfortable with different distractions before they let out the scare. They also had, what I felt like, is a lot of dead space between zones. I’m sure it had to do with the twist and turns of the maze and wanting to utilize their space best.
It’s important to note that they sell 3D glasses for $1 that help enhance your experience. The glasses can be used on all the different experiences, but not required. I decided against purchasing them and didn’t feel they hindered the experience any.
Priority 2: The Wicked Woods Walk
You should check out the Wicked Woods Walk second. This replaced the Haunted Hayride attraction. The trail is tucked back just past the maze exit point. It is also popular, and you’ll see long waits here too. Walking through the dark woods in Shakopee can be scary on any night, but having a bunch of people jumping out from behind the trees; it’s enough to scare the living daylights out of you on this one.
The Wicked Woods Walk has a designated path, but it’s not paved. Be careful of roots and other things you might encounter hiking. I ran this trail during the Running Dead 5K, and it’s safe, but if you have mobility issues, consider skipping it. All the attractions are on some form or dirt, but this one is especially challenging.
Priority 3: Everything Else
I say everything else because attractions are ones you can walk up to at any point. They are quick and a great way to kill some extra time.
To create more scary attractions in the park, the Trail of Terror has been built the Trailers of Terror. They include Chuckels Pizzeria, Grubbs Pest Control, Krusty’s Kabin, Bone Appetite, and Crystal Caverns. The Trailers of Terror are just what you think. A little trailer is set up as smaller scare zones. Each trailer has 3-5 actors inside scaring and they take you about 2 minutes to get through. Do not wait in line long for these attractions. If you see a line, go to the next one. By the time you get out, there will be no wait.
I found the entire different scare zone to be entertaining. The only one I won’t recommend is the Grubs Pest Control trailer. It was a blackout trailer. So instead of having people pop out, you wander in the dark trying to find your way out. While some may find this to be a terrifying experience, I just felt silly as I walked into the walls.
Scare Free Attractions
The Trail of Terror is not for kids, but they do have some scare-free attractions for those that just want to let loose. They include Crossbow Smash, Axe Throwing, Knockerball, Escape Room, and others. These attractions are littered throughout the park. They cost additional to participate in, but everyone that does them looks to be having fun.
One thing you have to check out, which is free, is their animatronic skeleton by the entrance. What you think is just a freestanding setup, was interactive. The Skelton will carry on a conversation with guests. He was even trying to get one girl to share her deep-fried Oreos with random strangers. He was getting a good crowd of spectators.
Priority 4: Everything Else
Depending on your night and what you like to do, these next items could be moved up in priority. But going to a haunted house should be more about the scary and less about the party.
Party Zone AKA, Club Scream
The maze ends in their Party Zone, known as Club Scream. It’s heated and depending on how much you like to party, it could be a lot of fun. The DJ is pumping out music, and there is a bar stocked with Beers and Wines.
Around the park, there are many different vendors selling food. It’s not all Hotdogs and chips either. One year, we had oven-cooked fresh Pizza. While I can’t guarantee that they will have it every year, they will have many options for you. If you are on a budget, eat before you go.
Minnesota’s weather is unpredictable in October. You may have freezing temperatures one day and it may be in the 50s the next. The colder the weather, the fewer visitors you’ll see. Either way, wear a bunch of layers. The best places to warm up are in the Haunted Maze and in Club Scream. The trailers are also warm, but the amount of time spent in there doesn’t do much to warm you. That’s why I love hanging out around the fire pit with a hot chocolate or coffee.
Tickets run $23.95 at the gate. Advanced discount tickets to Trail of Terror in Shakopee are available at Cub Foods, Menards, and Super America. Pro Tip: There is a Super America on the corner of Highway 169 and 41. You can also buy them online through their website. The online tickets charge a $2 per ticket handling fee, bringing the cost to $20.95 a ticket. I always recommend getting an advanced ticket just to avoid the lines.
They do offer additional experiences like the Phantom’s Feat and Zombie Paintball, and a Running Dead 5k Run that cost extra. Some of the events, like the Running Dead, will give you priority access to the grounds.
How to get to Trail of Terror?
The Trail of Terror is located on the Renaissance Festival property in Shakopee MN. Instead of turning on Highway 169, take 41 South and follow the signs.
Are you ready to be terrified?
The Trail of Terror is my go-to Halloween destination. It mixes all my favorite things. My last tip is to get there early. Not only will you be warmer, but you’ll be amazed at how quickly this place gets crazy.
For more great haunted houses in the Twin Cities, check out the The Scariest Haunted Houses in the Twin Cities