About The Association


The Superior Hiking Trail Association (SHTA) is a Minnesota nonprofit corporation dedicated to the construction, maintenance, management, and promotion of the Superior Hiking Trail. The Association was established in 1986, and along the way, tens of thousands of trail users have discovered the wonders of the Trail. Today, thousands of members, donors, business supporters, and volunteers who recognize the importance of caring for this beloved Trail contribute to our efforts.

What does the Association do?

  • Works with contractors and volunteers to build, maintain, and renew the Superior Hiking Trail.
  • Secures and protects permits for the Trail to cross the properties of public and private landowners.
  • Publishes guidebooks and maps for trail users.
  • Provides trail information to trail users through its publications, website, and social media channels.
  • Sells Superior Hiking Trail branded products to promote and celebrate trail use. All proceeds benefit the SHT.
  • Performs project management, permitting, financial management, and administrative for the Trail.
  • Leads volunteer projects to improve, maintain, and renew the SHT.
  • Organizes events to welcome trail users and the public at-large into our trail community.

Trail Renewal Program

In 2018, SHTA launched its Trail Renewal Program, a strategic effort aimed at improving the Trail where it is most needed and planning for future pressures. The program emphasizes careful evaluation of trail conditions and focuses on reducing environmental impact and improving user safety. The program is committed to creating a resilient and contiguous SHT to withstand ever-increasing use, the ravages of climate change, and changes in landownership.

Learn more about the principles behind the Trail Renewal Program:

Learn how SHTA is committed to building a resilient SHT:

Staff and Board of Directors

The SHTA has staff working in the store and office in Two Harbors, MN, as well as seasonal maintenance contractors.

Meet the SHTA Staff!

The SHTA Board of Directors consisting of members from a variety of locations, careers, backgrounds, and age groups meets four times a year to make policy decisions and guide the work of the Association.


Since 1986 members and donors have been providing the financial support necessary to build and maintain the trail. Approximately 60% of the Association’s operating budget comes from donations, membership fees, and other charitable contributions. The Trail has grown in popularity and aged over the years, which means this support is critical to our work to renew the Trail. Now more than ever, we hope you’ll join or donate to ensure our link to nature along the North Shore.

Please consider joining the Superior Hiking Trail Association or making a donation today.


A snapshot of SHTA’s 2019 finances:

The SHTA is in good financial shape, and we have established broad-based support from thousands of members, donors, and businesses. Here’s a look at our 2019 fiscal year (October 2018 through September 2019).

In 2019, our team continued to improve the financial viability, transparency, and sustainability of the Association. A few highlights of our efforts:

  • Increased grant revenue from the MN Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund, Federal Recreational Trails Program, Lake Superior Coastal Program, and others to power big projects. 
  • Expanded ways to give back to include legacy gifts, gifts of stock, auto-renewal of memberships, and Facebook fundraisers. 
  • Raised funds and awareness by partnering with local and national brands, like REI Co-op, Trailfitters, Larabar, and Whole Foods Co-op. 
  • Secured critical year-round funds by expanding our Monthly Sustainer program by over 50%. 

Quick Stats:

  • 367,967 — Total donations and memberships from 3,255 individual contributors
  • 78.9% — Percent of spending on program activities
  • $9.80 — Amount raised for every dollar spent on fundraising activities
  • 7.1 — Months of cash on hand to survive sudden drop in income

Questions? Contact development and communications director Annie Nelson at [email protected].

IRS Form 990s


Hard-working volunteers contribute to the on-going maintenance of the Trail. Some adopt particular trail sections, campsites, or trailheads. Others participate in scheduled maintenance or construction projects. Volunteers also are needed to help with Association events or staff a SHT booth at public events.

Learn more about volunteering with the SHTA »

Trail Information Center and SHTA Office

Mailing Address: PO Box 315, Two Harbors, MN 55616-0315

Telephone: 218-834-2700


Thursdays and Fridays: 10:00am – 5:00pm