Lowest Point on the SHT Gets A Lift From VCLs
August 21, 2019
A hike through the boggy, eastern end of the Hovland Lakewalk will now be a pleasant stroll along sturdy elevated boardwalk — complete with a handrail.
From Chicken Wire to Bog Pans
Over the course of two weeks in August, SHTA staff and volunteers resurrected a perpetually muddy, if not fully submerged, section of the Superior Hiking Trail where it meets the shore of Lake Superior north of Grand Marais.
Even in mid-August, the mud on this section was real. Bog pans, a new (to us) piece of hardware for elevated boardwalks, will keep this structure stable despite wet footing.
Led by Volunteer Crew Leader (VCL) Michael Loscheider and Trail Operations Director Tamer Ibrahim, our crew built over 250 feet of heavy-duty boardwalk to greatly improve the trail user experience and keep the Trail corridor from widening into surrounding vegetation.
Fellow VCL Steph Hoff joined the effort, bringing along her dedicated kids, Ava (pictured) and Grant, to pitch in on yet another trail project. (Steph will be leading her own project at Crow Creek (north) in September — learn more and sign up to volunteer here).
This project was originally planned to be wrapped up in three days. But, when it became clear it wouldn’t get done in that window, Michael and Steph offered to come back and rally volunteers for a few more days to see the project through to completion. All told, 16 volunteers put in nearly 450 hours on this improved section near the Lakewalk.
As a finishing touch, VCL Michael Loscheider installed a sign (that he made) to mark the lowest elevation of the Trail. Spirits, however, were high.
Thanks to our dedicated crew, another stretch of the SHT is renewed, resilient, and ready for your enjoyment.