I'm looking for new hikes, not the same old same old, not the ones that have been in other hiking guidebooks. And I found two good ones.
First is this new set of trails north and west of Two Harbors, in the Lake County Demo Forest.
The trail itself is fairly typical, with no great views and basic Superior Hiking Trail style construction. What puts it over the top though is a very nice interpretive guidebook, keyed to numbered signs around the trails.There are four loops, all intertwined; combining them all you get about a 3.2 mile hike. The guidebook goes into history, ecology, forest management and more.
The next "hike" was from the Burlington Bay camp-ground around Lighthouse Point, connecting the two "bays" of Two Harbors (Burlington and Agate).
It turns out that the Sonju Trail is just the beginning. The wide gravel or paved path is nice for kids on bikes or the elderly with strollers. But for the adventurous hiker, the official path is just an excuse to get to the unofficial, unmaintained trail right above the lakeshore...or to reach the breakwater with its wide surface inviting a stroll right out into Lake Superior.
The North Shore state park hiking club trail challenge picks up again this Thursday, with a multiple use attempt on the Split Rock Lighthouse State Park trail...one of the longest Hiking Club trails in the state!