Superior Hiking Trail – Day 8

Saturday September 30, 2017

Starting Point: Stewart River Campsite

Ending Point: Lake County Road 301

Trail Miles Hiked: 11.3

I have 11 miles to hike today and my shuttle is scheduled for 2:00 pm, so I got up early, broke camp, and headed out about the time everyone else was getting up.  As I left camp, I discovered that the campsite was only a few hundred yards from a bridge crossing the Stewart River.  The 6 miles to Reeves Road Trailhead was a nice trail through the woods and followed the Stewart River through the forest.  There were many great overlooks of the river along the trail and I think one of the best sections on the SHT.  The trail crossed Reeves road a several times before finally joining the road and becoming a road walk for about 1/2 mile before the trailhead parking area.  After leaving the parking area the trail continues as a roadwalk for about another 1/2 mile before cutting off down a snowmobile trail for about 1/2 mile.

As you may recall I have no love lost for walking snowmobile trails and this one was no different.  It was 1/2 mile of walking through muddy trails with water up to mid calf.  My feet, which were beginning to actually dry out, were once again soaked by the mud.  After leaving the snowmobile trail, the trail climbed upward to a rock cliff and  down a bluff on the other side.  To make up for this nice section of trail we were immediately greeted by a very wet trail through the forest.  I tried to stay high on tree roots for a while, but to no avail, and finally gave up and just stated slogging through the muddy trail.  The next 4 mile of trail had to be the muddiest, soggiest section I had been in yet.  It was impossible to avoid the mud and the hidden rocks and roots underneath made footing precarious and greatly slowed down my pace.  I finally made it through the mud and came out of the forest at the county road 301 trailhead about 1:00 pm.  With about an hour to spare before my shuttle arrived, I spread out my gear in the sun to dry and sat down to eat some lunch.  Robert Risch, the owner of Superior Hiking Shuttle arrived on-time and we enjoyed a nice conversation about the Superior Hiking Trail and the Two Harbors area on the way to the Voyageur Lakewalk Inn in Duluth.

Once at the hotel, I jumped in the shower, put on my rain clothes and headed to the laundry mat to clean my clothes.  My flight back home is not until tomorrow evening so I have some time to enjoy the town tonight and tomorrow.

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