Superior Hiking Trail

Lutsen Ski Trailhead to Temperance River State Park

19 miles
3 Days
October 16-18, 2009

Trip Profile (entire trip)
Mapsource Route (entire trip)

SHT Lutsen profile

I had planned this trip for Oct 9-11 but it was constant rain and upper 30's so I waited. I had done the 7 mile Bean and Bear Lake loop on an overnight trip the previous weekend with my sister, and although we had a blast, it rained the entire time. No campfire, and wet and cold for 2 days. Although we had good rain gear, the thought of making camp a second night with wet gear was enough to make me avoid doing it for a 3 day trip.

It looked more promising for the following weekend. Friday was forecasted with 40% chance of rain, and upper 30's, but Saturday and Sunday was forecasted to be partially sunny and lower 40's so I figured I could make it through Friday and dry out Saturday. Luckily the weather people were close this time. Friday was wet, and although Saturday was mostly overcast it was dry. Sunday was NICE! Mid 40's, mostly sunny and dry!

This was the last weekend the Superior Shuttle was in operation for the 2009 season, so it was this weekend, or wait until 2010.
This trip was a solo trip. Well, almost solo. I had a hiking buddy with me, my 105 LB German Shepherd, Timber. He has his own pack, so carries most of his own gear. Nice to have company on the trail but still have the solitude and quiet of a solo trip.

I woke up early Friday morning and hit the road at 4:00am. I had to catch the Superior Shuttle at Temperance at 10:00 so I added an extra hour and wound up at Temperance at 9:00 am. It was drizzling off and on, but nothing major. I grabbed my pack, got Timber's pack on him and walked the short hike to the Shuttle pick up point. Temperance River Park requires a Park permit to leave your car overnight, and there is a parking area by the maintenance shop that is used rather than the day parking area. It is about .3 miles to the Shuttle pick up point so no big deal.

The Shuttle took me from Temperance to the Lutsen Trailhead. I hit the trail at 11:00. I was surprised to see snow on the ground. The snow was at 1300 ft so the first 5 miles were in off and on snow. There was a few spots on day 2 and 3 where I hit a small snow covered area, but mostly it was day 1 that had snow pack. It was 2-3 inches deep at 1600 ft. This time of year the temps can go below freezing, so snow is always a possibility. I was prepared for temps down to 20 or so, but really didn't want to snow camp!

The total hike wound up being 19 miles. I did 5.6 miles on day 1, 6.7 miles on day 2, and 6.7 miles on day 3. Pretty easy pace, I wanted this to be a relaxing trip so I limited the miles each day.

My starting pack weight for this trip was 31 lbs. 3.25 of that was the extra sleeping bag and pad for Timber, plus another 2 lbs to carry my 2 person tent so Timber could also sleep inside. If I subtract the extra weight I carried for my dog, my starting weight would have been 26 lbs. Getting lighter each trip!

Day 1