Zombies attack Gunstock Ranch in first ever Zombie Hayride

Written by: 
Hannah Packard ~ Multimedia Journalist

By day Gunstock Ranch is a beautiful green pasture but by night it becomes a zombie-infested playground. The same Halloween masterminds responsible for the Haunted Plantation in Waipahu have brought horror to North Shore with the new Gunstock Zombie Hayride.

The ranch-style adrenaline rush opened on Oct. 18 and 19 and will continue on the 25, 26, and 28. The ride goes from 7 to 11 p.m., during which time participants are loaded into trailers and experience thrilling suspense and adventure as they are driven through the moonlit ranch thick with bloodied zombies. Admission is $20.

Angelina Khan, of Diamond Head, is the operations manager for the Gunstock Zombie Hayride. She explained that the opening was successful and pointed out the wide geographical range of those who had come to participate. She said, “This is our first year branching out. Some people came from the other side of the island too.“ Khan said she normally works on the Haunted Plantation this time of season.

Riders said they felt tension and excitement after riding last Saturday, Oct. 19, and were buzzing about the rush. A large, orange, nearly full moon lit up a group of Kahuku High School students as they talked about the most stressful moments of the excursion.

Zoe Sher, from Laie, said she and her friends, “Were so scared before—we were freaking out. It was prime.” Alex Walsh, of Sunset, agreed as she added, “Not knowing what was going to happen: that was the scariest.”

Before each ride visitors were told firmly not to touch the zombies and were assured that the zombies would not touch them either. However, they came dangerously close. Riders linked arms, held hands, hid their faces, and cowered against complete strangers in their efforts to endure the zombie attacks. At one point, the undead were seen to ride horses along the side of the trailer, keeping pace.

Jordan Jacobson, a junior in Pacific Island studies from California, observed, “The girl next to me was getting into my seat. The cage on the trailer was a nice effect—the whole thing was dark and suspenseful.”

It remains to be seen whether the hayride will continue as a tradition in coming years.