For my last review of the season I decided to hit up a haunt that has been around for almost 25 years and that haunt was Wompus Woods. In the upstate of South Carolina everyone has been to Wompus Woods at least once at some point in their life. I use to go as teenager so it’s exciting to revisit my youth at a haunt that made me fall in love with haunting to begin with. The drive was just as I remembered. Not too far off the interstate, you will make a fews turns and find yourself going down some creepy backroads until you see the well lit signs directing you to Wompus Woods. Upon arrival I was directed into the parking lot which was $2.00 per car to park. The parking lot is a big lot and very well organized but was filling up very quickly as we were arriving. With excitement we quickly parked and headed to the ticket booth where we met with the owner. The owner at Wompus Woods is always very welcoming and friendly. He treated my kids and I with complimentary VIP tickets to the haunted trail and hayride. After we had our hands stamped we headed to the entrance were there was a decent crowd but seemed to be moving pretty quickly. We couldn’t wait to see what they had in store for us.
The atmosphere at Wompus Woods is a more old school haunt feel with concessions, lurkers and screaming customers throughout the midway and que lines. It definitely has a more family friendly vibe which makes a great place to take all the kiddos for some Halloween fun. Everything was well lit and there was always someone close by to direct you which I love because I hate not knowing where to go. The midway was simple but had everything you would need.
Costume / Makeup
The costuming and makeup at Wompus Woods was hit or miss. Half of the crew was dressed in some pretty great costumes and makeup that you could tell had a lot of thought and detail that went into them. But then there was the other half of the actors that had college football hoodies on with a cheap Halloween store mask. So with that being said, some of their costuming and makeup was quite impressive and some was a little disappointing.
Wompus Woods probably has the most actors I’ve seen at any haunt in the upstate. Its pretty obvious which ones are volunteers and doing the bare minimum vs. the ones that are 100% in it for the passion and love for scaring. So much like the costuming and makeup, the acting was hit or miss. There were a lot of actors that were extremely high energy and some that did a little roar and retreated quickly back to their spot. It did seem like a busy night for them so there wasn’t much time to waste for them to be too interactive and hold up the groups. But for the most part they did do a good job at getting their scares and resetting for the next group. Wompus Woods is a huge haunt and I have to give them kudos for having enough actors to fill each scene. I didn’t really come across any dead spots. There was always someone close by waiting to get ya!
Trail Experience/ Theming
The forever theme and backstory of Wompus Woods is the legend of the Wompus Monster that lurks the woods with their slogan being “ Where the woods come alive”. It’s a simple but effective concept. But once you get inside it’s a variety of all things you would expect to be at a haunted attraction. They have two attractions being the family hayride and the haunted trail. We started with the hayride which was a fun ride through the deep woods, slowing down at each scene and scare. The hayride was more theatrical as the actors would do a quick skit and then you would get your scare coming from any direction. Wompus Woods does amazing job at putting out prop characters all throughout the ride so your unsure of who is real and who isn’t. So just when you think your passing by a static prop you are pleasantly surprised by a live actor coming at you. Once we finished the hayride we made our way to the haunted trail. The trail took you through a lot of mazes through the dark woods and scenes spread out throughout the trail. One of my favorite things about Wompus Woods is their build designs. They have a very creative way of building their sets and scenes. You will go through crazy mazes, up and down ramps, into small tight spaces that gradually get wider or taller as you go. Again they had actors at every turn and a lot of them with chainsaws!!
Bang For Your Buck
Wompus Woods is reasonably priced for the experience. The trail and hayride are both priced at $20.00 for general admission and $10.00 for children for each event. The trail and the hayride both took us about 20 minutes to get through so I would say the price seems fair.
Is it scary?
Wompus Woods is scary but not too intense as its targeted more towards families and kids. But it definitely has its scary moments and got quite a few jumps out of me. They are good at creating that happy medium of a family friendly but scary old school haunt feel.
Originality / Creativity
Wompus Woods is original and creative in the way they deliver that old school feel and their scene and set builds are very unique and well planned out. They have a lot of your basic haunt characters, sets and scenes but with that Wompus Woods touch that is unlike any others. Another thing that Wompus Woods is known for is the cannon that goes off every so often which is super loud but sets the whole mood and anticipation which I have always loved because its sets them apart from the rest and adds that special extra thing to their show that you look forward to.
Special Effects/ Visuals
Wompus Woods has a good bit of special effects lighting and sounds but nothing over the top as it’s a more old school haunt. There aren’t any animatronics or crazy pneumatics. They get their scares in more traditional ways with lots of actors hiding in well thought out hiding spots that you never see coming. The scenes weren’t overly detailed but enough to get the concept of what you were walking into. The main scenes were well lit along with a lot of dark mazes that you had to feel your way through. They do a fine job at touching on everyone's different fears from clowns, to tight spaces to loud sounds, spiders, hillbillies, dark spaces and so much more without elaborate special effects.
The last time I visited Wompus Woods was about 2 years ago. It hasn’t changed a lot but I did notice some new added and extended scenes.
Did I feel comfortable?
I felt very safe at Wompus Woods. It was well lit throughout the parking lots and throughout the haunt in between the events with someone always nearby to help direct you further. With the pandemic in place, the layout was beneficial to keep too many people crowding up in one area. Masks were optional but not required.
Overall I feel like Wompus Woods is a classic haunt that takes me back to my roots. It will always be a forever favorite of mine because of its old school feel. Unfortunately Wompus Woods will be closing after next year so I highly recommend visiting them before they shut their doors forever. It’s a great place for Halloween fun with the family and kids.