We first grew a couple acres of feed corn in 2006 to try out winter grazing for our cattle. That summer our 3 kids had fun playing in it and we jokingly said we should make some trails through it for them if we decided to grow it again. That sparked an idea!
We grew it again in 2010 for our cattle to winter graze but this time we did make some trails and invited friends to come and "play". We cleared out a section of bush in the middle of the field and put a firepit and picnic tables there to use. We made the trails lead to and from this bush. This is how Corn Trails became.
A friend of mine and I had always wanted to put on a haunted house event for Halloween and we did so in an old barn at the trails that year. The Haunted Barn was a lot of fun and people enjoyed it.
2011 was too wet to seed the corn.
We seeded it again in 2012 and by then word of mouth had gotten the Corn Trails name out there along with the help of Facebook. We had many repeat customers and started getting group bookings from the area such as youth groups, school class field trips, staff parties and birthday parties and other organizations looking for something different to do. Lots of times, they would bring wieners or burgers to cook on the firepit. Halloween was once again a fun event. I converted an old house out in the field into a witch house. Many friends came and helped out by hiding within the trails to scare people as they went by. The feedback was awesome.
2.35 miles of total trails
1.1 mile of correct trails
21 dead ends
It took 60 mins to travel every single trail and only 25 mins to travel the correct trail
2013 came and went with 2.25 miles of total trails with 1 mile of correct trail. Again, it took 60 mins to travel every single trail and only 25 mins to do the correct trail by taking the short cut or 35 mins by taking the long way. There were less deadends that year but more loops. The trails were throughout 20 acres of corn. The corn at its tallest was about 15 feet tall but most of the corn was between 8-10 feet tall.
Our daughters are frequently seen working at the trails during harvest when I can't be there. Our son helps out with harvest but all 3 kids put in their time preparing the trails, hauling firewood, placing signs, etc.
In 2014, we moved to another location to give the current field a rest and to get weeds under control. The new location was moved 1/2 mile east.
The trails were now within about 50 acres of a seeded area. Distance and length has remained a constant. Difficulty has seemed to vary from year to year.
The new location provided us with ample parking and a unique hollowed out bush area at the beginning became our firepit/picnic area. Another bush about half way through the trails provides a rest area with shade.
Another new addition this year, was a 50 foot trailer used as our haunted trailer for halloween.
2015 started off with a devastating late spring frost. A great amount of corn froze right to the ground. The crop slowly regrew and it welcomed the summer rains and August heat. Once open, the season had a slow start due to the swarms of mosquitos but finished off great due to a beautiful fall.
In 2016, we added an 18 hole "rustic" mini golf course! The summer rains and heat hit at just the right times and we were able to open the mini golf and the trails at the beginning of August.