Trail Improvement Projects Receive Major Funding


Great news! The much anticipated funding recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR) and Minnesota’s Environment and Natural Resources Trust Funds (ENRTF) was approved by the state legislature in June of 2021.  

A Showcase of Resource-Sensitive Trail Construction

The Superior Hiking Trail Association’s 2020 proposal was fully funded at $450,000 and will help build Phase II of the Gooseberry Gap, renew and restore aged infrastructure throughout the trail corridor and remove and replace dangerous and failing structures like boardwalks, stairways and small bridges along the North Shore.  These projects will minimize environmental damage along the Trail, increase the SHT’s resilience to the impacts of increasing use and climate change, and enhance trail users’ experience and safety.

Plumbing the Muddy Depths of the SHT

The Association is also the recipient of a 2021 request to fund $187,000 of improvements to address perennial water issues along the Trail corridor. The goal is to have a hydrologically invisible Trail (thanks Tim Malzhan for teaching us that term)!  This grant will help us make improvements using “plumbing techniques” to keep water off the Trail and keep people on the Traill. 

A Whole Lot of Gratitude

Many of the first miles of the Trail were built with funding provided by the LCCMR, and the ENRTF has been a source of major grant funding to help launch the SHTA’s Trail Renewal Program since 2018. The Superior Hiking Trail Association is grateful to the state of Minnesota for providing this “consistent and stable source of funding for activities that protect, conserve, preserve, and enhance Minnesota’s air, water, land fish, wildlife and other natural resources for the benefit of current citizens and future generations.” 

Please extend a HUGE “thank you” to your state representatives, the LCCMR Commissioners, and LCCMR staff who make these funds available to protect, maintain and improve the Superior Hiking Trail!


                   SHT Overnight Camping is Reopened

All SHT campsites have reopened for overnight use starting this past Friday, September 3rd. The MN DNR and the Superior National Forest have lifted their restrictions on dispersed camping and overnight use. 

Land manager officials made the decision to lift the closure as fall temperatures, recent rains, and shorter days have helped to moderate fire conditions and active fires.  

While overnight camping will be allowed, the fire danger remains high and the fire ban is still in place on the entire SHT and accompanying lands. 


While the situation has improved slightly, we encourage you to be aware of the following conditions.

  • Fire danger remains high

  • Extreme drought continues

  • Water sources are unreliable 

Please continue to do your part as a steward of the Trail. If anything changes, we’ll continue to provide you with updates.

The SHTA Welcomes New Board Members

The Superior Hiking Trail Association just welcomed three new members to our Board of Directors and would like to introduce you to each of them over the coming months.

Erik Birkeland joins the SHTA Board of Directors to share his passion for hiking and his professional expertise in construction project management. For as long as Erik can remember he has been section hiking the Superior Hiking Trail and has witnessed its growth and development over the years. He is a long time Duluth resident and holds strong family connections to the North Shore. 

When Erik shared that he wanted to "help steward the sustainability of the trail for generations to come," the nomination committee knew that Erik was a solid fit for the Board. His sentiments could not more closely align the current goals and needs of the Association.

An avid hiker and backpacker, Erik has logged countless trail miles here in Northern Minnesota but also has spent time out on trails in the Rockies, southern Utah and Europe.

With a soft spot for quality gear, he has published a number of online gear reviews, trip reports and hiking guides. Erik also brings along some great Board leadership experience, having served on the boards of both Hartley Nature Center and Duluth Goodwill Industries in the past.

Welcome Erik, thanks for helping steward the SHT!

                   Trail Store Moves Online for the Season

Our Trail Store in Two Harbors is closing and moving online. 

While our physical Trail Store will be closed for the remainder of the season, we’re happy to take your orders online. To purchase SHTA goods and for more information, visit us at We’re currently looking into the possibility for curbside pickup - more details to come.

In addition, we have a great trail community and there are plenty of local shops along the North Shore that sell our maps and guidebook. Find a list of these retailers at

When we opened our Trail Store in our new downtown Two Harbors location earlier this summer, the COVID situation was looking good in our community. However, with the increased cases and the risk of the Delta variant, we have made the decision to protect our staff and trail community by closing our physical storefront. 

We loved the energy that came in the door with all the visitors to the Trail Store this summer. Thank you for making it a great summer season. While these are uncertain times, we look forward to the day when we can welcome you all back in. Until then, we’ll see you all out on the Trail!

Support the Trail by Purchasing SHT Goods!

As the summer trail season comes to a close, be sure to check out these items to remember the summer season and plan your next adventure. 
2021 SHT-Shirt
2021 SHT-Shirt
Superior Hiking Trail Databook
Superior Hiking Trail Databook
Sold Out - Available beginning 9/13/21
Tin Cup Design Poster - St. Louis Co.
Tin Cup Design Poster - St. Louis Co.
Visit our Online Trail Store to discover other goods that'll help you rep your love for the Superior Hiking Trail and get you ready for your next adventure. 

All sales support the SHT!

Are you an active user of the Superior Hiking Trail? Do you love and care for the Trail as much as we do? 

Demonstrate your commitment and dedication to the SHT by donating and becoming a member today. 

The Superior Hiking Trail Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Tax ID: 41-1569104. Our mailing address is:  PO Box 315, Two Harbors, MN 55616-0315

Questions? Contact us at

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