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A true north shore past-time, hiking is what we do best in the Silver Bay Area. The Superior Hiking Trail is the creme de la creme when it comes to guided hikes, family hikes, group tours, day and overnight trips. With the numerous varieties of trail sections, your weekend, week-long vacation or annual trips will become a trek unto itself! The Superior Hiking Trail is a long-distance footpath, modeled after the Appalachian Trail, and traverses the beautiful cliffs and rocky ridges paralleling Lake Superior's North Shore. There are nearly 277 miles of trail to start your vacation! In fact, Backpacker Magazine identified the Superior Hiking Trail as the second best trail in the country.

Erosion during the last billion years has etched out tilted layers to form the Sawtooth Mountains in Cook County. These are a series of long ridges with a relatively gentle southeast slope toward Lake Superior and a steep northwest slope, each one sculpted from a single huge lava flow. As you hike the trail, take time to notice the diverse geologic history that has shaped the landscape. Look for evidence of volcanic activity, glacial erosion and deposition, and abandoned beaches far above the present lake level.

Utilizing a serpentine route, the 4.7 mile section of the Superior Hiking Trail between Beaver Bay and Silver Bay is one of the more scenic sections on the entire trail system with its dramatic views as well as an intimate look at the Beaver River and its gorgeous falls. Easy access at both ends makes this a worthwhile journey, especially for the local history buff. Choose from two convenient trailheads. Silver Bay offers a parking area two miles north of Hwy 61 at the Penn Avenue parking lot just west of Silver Bay, or start at the gravel Beaver Bay parking area located 1 mile NW of Beaver Bay on Hwy 4. This section offers great views, waterfalls, and walk-in campsites. The south Beaver River campsite offers 3 tent pads one mile from the trail head while the north Beaver River campsite offers 3 tent pads ¾ of a mile from the trail head.

The Twin Lakes Trail, named after the dramatic Bean and Bear Lakes, is a 7.6 mile loop from the Beaver Bay parking lot and 6.8 mile section if you hike from the Penn Blvd parking lot in Silver Bay. This is one of the more challenging sections of the SHT, with lots of up and down, great views of the Lake and inland bluffs. It begins in the outskirts of Silver Bay and winds past beautiful Bean and Bear Lakes into Tettegouche State Park. The thick maple forests make it a popular fall colors hike. Numerous tent sites await your arrival after a great and perhaps exhausting day on the trail.

Please remember the hikers cardinal rule…if you pack it in, pack it out.

Heart of the North Shore