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News & Information

News and information, interviews, weather, upcoming events, music, school news, and many special features. North Shore Morning includes our popular trivia question - Pop Quiz! The North Shore Morning program is the place to connect with the people, culture and events of our region!


What's On:
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Backpacking 101 - Michelle Schroeder - September

"Backpacking 101" by Michelle Schroeder.
September 06, 2020.



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COVID Virus Found in Lake Superior

The Director of Minnesota Sea Grant,  John Downing talks with North Shore Morning Host, Mark Abrahamson about the UMD study that has recently found traces of the virus that causes COVID-19 in the waters of Lake Superior at a few popular Duluth beaches.


Superior National Forest Update

Superior National Forest Update - Oct 02

Superior National Forest Update for the week of Oct 1-8, 2020 with Steve Robertsen, education and interpretation specialist for the USDA Forest Service - Superior National Forest.


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Wildersmith on the Gunflint - October 02

Wildersmith on the Gunflint     by     Fred Smith
October 2, 2020    
The gate is open, and here is October. We’d better pay attention or this segment will pass us by quickly as did the month nine cousin.                                                                        

It is noteworthy the Ojibwe, “falling leaves” full moon peaked when the calendar turned over, and if that lunar occasion wasn’t enough astronomical radiance, we’ll be catching a “blue moon” before November flips the page.                                                            

October winds will be puffing a harsher theme, sunrise will be getting later, shadows will be getting longer, dark skies will come earlier and silence of the forest will become deeper. It is also likely the landscape could be white in time for the “blue moon” arising on the thirty-first day.                                                                                                                            

Since the last time we met on the radio, and before month ten squeezed in, the upper Gunflint reached the summit of our 2020 “Technicolor” spectacle. You’ve heard me say this before, but the show this year looked to be the best ever during my twenty-one observations. When “Sol” has been on high beam, the collage of hues is nearly blinding.                                           

Quickly as the colorful glow of fall grew, the majesty is beginning to take some final bows. Maples are dripping scarlet flakes and the slightest breath of wind has birch and aspen in squalls of golden tokens. All of which are blanketing back country roads with an endless tribute to summer memories. By the time this report hits the air many bare branch skeletons will be lurking over-head, and sighting through the woods will be visibly improved.                                                   

Sometimes it seems like all one has to do is to speak up or whine a bit, and good things trickle forth. Such is the case with my comment last week about missing aromas of the season. The essence of autumn was soon after enhanced when this neighborhood got a nice soaking rain. Eight tenths were recorded over a couple days. The much needed moisture seems to have nourished an on-set of fall fragrances. Guess pungency may have been waiting for the official first day of the changing season.                                                                                           
On a recent trip to the Village, some nature reflections were captured on several Trail side lakes. Especially provocative was a perfect likeness of the gold and green shore line forest reflected off the mirror smooth Swamper Lake.                                                          

The past couple of weeks have been a “shutterbugs” delight. So too for “leaf peepers’ as visitors are keeping the black top busy. It must also be an art lovers’ joy, driving the Trail through this natural exhibit and opting a stop at the annual GM Art Colony Studio Tour over at Hungry Jack Outfitters.                                                                                                                                                   

While “wild neighborhood” critter reports have been minimal, we know they are out there somewhere. Recent trail cam shots at the Chik Wauk Campus have recorded wolves, bear and lynx confirming their existence with a candid photo op.                                                     

The Smith’s verified there are still moose to be found after not having observed one for months. A handsome dude in full regalia greeted us along the Trail between Birch and Mayhew Lakes during the same trip mentioned earlier.                                                                          

The big fellow startled us a bit and then decided to run alongside the vehicle for a short distance before heading off into woodsy obscurity. I can only guess this iconic guy was looking for a girl-friend. Seeing a moose was an added North woods treat to the colorful excursion.          

The melodic chirping of small avian has slacked off to mostly that of chickadees and red breasted nuthatches. Meanwhile, the ranting and raving chorus of crows/ravens and blue jays along with a percussive pileated woodpecker are catering accompaniment for enjoyment of the days to come in our October verse. The Gunflint Trail, a gift for the senses!                                 
For WTIP, this is Wildersmith, along the Gunflint Trail, where every day is magical, marvelous and miraculous!


AEAO Scholarship 2020 Ben Seaton

Ben Seaton winner of AEAO Scholarship

North Shore Morning Host, Mark Abrahamson talks with Ben Seaton - winner of the first Arrowhead Eagles Aviation Organization Scholarship. 


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Duluth Port Shipping

North Shore Morning Host, Mark Abrahamson talks with Duluth Seaway Port Authority Director of Communication and Marketing, Jayson Hron about the 2020 shipping season so far.  While shipping tonnage is down due to the coronavirus, there are some bright spots.

You can track boats on the Great Lakes via,, or


Fall on the Gunflint Trail by Bryan Hansel

North Woods Naturalist: Fall equinox

This week marked the official start of autumn with the fall equinox.  In this edition of North Woods Naturalist, botanist and plant ecologist Chel Anderson talks about what she's observing in our woods and waters during the transition from summer for fall.


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Superior National Forest Update - September 25

North Shore Morning host Mark Abrahamson talks with Education and Interpretation Specialist, Steve Robertsen in this Superior National Forest update.


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Wildersmith on the Gunflint - September 25

Wildersmith on the Gunflint     by     Fred Smith
September 25, 2020    

Here we are once again; September engine 2020 has roared past Gunflint station with the old caboose a few lengths from heading off into oblivion. It’s hard to imagine we are humming the final stanza of a September song.                                                                                       

Recent days in the upper Gunflint have been splendid. Temps have bounced back from last weeks’ frostiness to more normal expectations…under smoke filtered sunshine. The warmth has even aroused some members of the insect population.                                                          

Meanwhile the smoke from those west coast infernos is caught in the jet stream and is high aloft, dimming “Sol’s beam. Luckily, to date, the usual noxious smell and ensuing air quality difficulties seem to be minimal around Wildersmith.                                                              

Like a broken record there is no good new with regard to rain since our last meeting. A few drops last Saturday morning is all we have been able to muster along the Mile O Pine, barely dampening the dust.                                                                                                                        

This in mind, a component of autumn is missing. Although color aspects are full speed ahead, the aromatics of dank earth and decaying leaves is not yet wafting through the forest. So woods users are kicking up dust and crunching a very dry landscape until “Mother Nature” opens the spigot to allow the delight of seasonal pungency.                                                                                                                                                         

While parts of the upper Trail are in varying stages of fall intensity, the Mile O Pine is beyond vivid. There is little to say that was good about the 1999 Derecho but the big blow down did allow sunshine to enable a sparse advancement of maples in places of the upper Trail.                                                     

Twenty plus years later, we are beyond the spoils of the tragedy as scarlet beauties are on fire. The crimson is mingled with oranges and golds against the evergreen back drop in a breath taking mosaic. Every day seems to get a little brighter and in the words of distinguished… Phenologist and educator Larry Weber they are “tree---mendous!                        

All who live along similar pristine pathways are enjoying gift while it lasts’. Knowing this awesome happening is short lived, unfortunately, a melancholy end to this spectacle is in the cards.                                                                                                                                                    

Some tokens of gold and rust have already started to descend from their summer connection, and are being windrowed by the few passing neighborhood vehicles. The array of golden rows along the roadway brings to mind that our back country pathways will be outlined in white after a few more weeks are recorded.                                                                                                                                                            
Earlier in our week, stiff breezes created a mini blizzard of coniferous needles. These elder generation needles are adding another layer of landscape carpeting to the “duff” accumulation of thousands of years. Talk about plush!                                                                                                                                            

The rut is on in “moosedom.” Over in the Iron lake area, some grouse hunters reported a first sign setting the stage for establishing territory and attracting attention of a member of the fairer gender. They came upon an area of tree bark scrapes and a lot of hoof prints crushing the surrounding brush. Ungulate romance is in the air!                                                    

Speaking of grouse, good reports are coming in from hunters on their first weekend, and DNR information tells of many successes for bear chasers as well.                                                                                      

The Gunflint Community is saying good bye to a family of historical renown. Bruce Kerfoot, son of the iconic Justine, and wife Sue are departing the North woods next week. Bruce who has lived on the Gunflint Trail since birth, and Sue will be moving south into Missouri, establishing new residency near son Robert and his family.                                                   

Legends of the Kerfoot family date back to the 1920’s, and Bruce has observed Gunflint Trail history unfold on a daily basis for all of his eight decades living around and operating Gunflint Lodge.                                                                                                                                               
Both Bruce and Sue are living chapters of Gunflint Trail history. And, their contributions to the Gunflint Community are uncountable.                                                                                                                                                                     

While they plan to winter in their new digs to the south, I’m told they plan on summers back on the Trail. So they will continue ties with many old friends and neighbors.                                                  

The Gunflint Community wishes them the best in their new life endeavors and always welcomes them back to their place of many memories!                                                                             

For WTIP, this is Wildersmith, along the Gunflint Trail, where every day is great, as “Mother Nature” whispers “can do” with confidence.



Superior Reviews - Lin Salisbury "The Land"

In this edition of "Superior Reviews", Lin Salisbury reviews Thomas Maltman's book "The Land".