Popularity contest could be worth $75,000 to Superior Hiking Trail

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A sporting goods company is ready to put its money where your foot is, hikers.

The Superior Hiking Trail along the big lake's north shore could benefit from up to $75,000 in online voting being conducted by REI.

The company is awarding money for the preservation and growth of ten of America's favorite trails. Visitors to REI's "Every Trail Connects" page can vote for a trail. Each vote is worth five dollars for that trail.

REI is contributing a total of $500,000. So once the five-dollar votes add up to that amount, the voting will end. The company has also capped the total contribution to any one trail at $75,000. Each person can vote once per day.

The Superior Hiking Trail covers more than 300 miles, from south of Duluth to the boundary with Canada. Most of it hugs Lake Superior. The trail is maintained by volunteers with the Lake Superior Hiking Trail Association.

A writer for National Geographic deemed it America's best trail between the Continental Divide and the Appalachians.

The voting in REI's contest opened on Friday morning. Late Friday night about half of the money was spoken for. Superior Hiking Trail had already claimed more than $36,000 and had the second-largest vote total, trailing only the Mount Columbia Summit Trail in Colorado.

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