Published December 13, 2009, 12:00 AM

22 miles added to Superior Hiking Trail

Quietly, in early September, a new 22-mile segment of the Superior Hiking Trail opened. And it may become popular with snowshoers this winter, said Gayle Coyer, executive director of the Superior Hiking Trail Association.

By: Sam Cook, Duluth News Tribune

Quietly, in early September, a new 22-mile segment of the Superior Hiking Trail opened. And it may become popular with snowshoers this winter, said Gayle Coyer, executive director of the Superior Hiking Trail Association.

The new section is between Duluth and Two Harbors. It runs from Rossini Road to Lake County Road 301.

“The new section will be a great section to do winter camping on,” Coyer said. “There’s not as much elevation change, so it’s easier to do on snowshoes. … We’re seeing an increase in snowshoeing on the trail in winter.”

With the addition of these 22 miles, the total length of the Superior Hiking Trail on the North Shore is 235 miles. It now starts at Rossini Road and goes to the Canadian Border.

Another 42 miles of the trail runs through Duluth. A 6.4-mile section has been built between Fox Farm Road and Rossini Road, but signs won’t go up until the spring, Coyer said.

Eventually, the trail will run from the Minnesota-Wisconsin border near Jay Cooke State Park to the Canadian border, for a total distance of 330 miles.

Nearly all of the trail construction has been done by volunteers under the direction of a single paid supervisor. The Minnesota Conservation Corps also helped build a portion of the new 22-mile section, Coyer said.

Like the existing trail, the new 22-mile piece is a single, narrow path that winds through forests, crossing streams on simple bridges.

“The new section features a variety of forest types and some really scenic creeks and rivers,” Coyer said. “It crosses the Knife River, the Stewart and McCarthy Creek.”

Work will continue next summer on a section from Fox Farm Road west for about five miles. For maps of the new trail, showing campsites and trailheads, go to www.shta.org.

Tags: