WI Trip Stats (3/08):
Click here to see Southern
Counties visited: 57
Town visited most:
Places slept in:
Sayner, Cambridge, Prairie du Chien, Delavan, Fontana, Milwaukee, Winneconne,
Townsend, Superior, Brule River SF, LaCrosse, Wisconsin Dells,
Sheboygan, Packwaukee, Lake Geneva
Most impressive town:
Least impressive town:
Most scenic area:
Northern Highlands State Forest
Most scenic spot:
Lone Tree Lake
Highest Elevation: Timm's
Three Words: cheese,
Ice Age, cows
Best Food: There
are many places in the Northwoods offering Friday fish fries.
Road Trips: countless
IL, MN, MI,
Major passes: Vertical:
US-51 Corridor. Done several times most numerously to get to Sayner and the
Northwoods. Great River Road. I have travelled many lengths of the road,
but never continuous. US-45/41 Corridor. Travelled nearly
completely through state from Eagle River to Union Grove and done in part on Lk Michigan
circles. I-43 Corridor. Done a few times while circling Lk
Michigan. WI-13 Corridor. Done once coming home from the
Northwoods. Very scenic. Horizontal: I-90 Corridor.
A couple of times done on trips through the state to Minnesota. It is much more scenic a
drive than I-94. I-94 Corridor. Done everytime I go to
Minneapolis. US-8 Corridor. Done half-way when travelling from
Chisago City, MN to Sayner, WI. Passed tornado ravaged Ladysmith.
explored: Vilas County (especially Sayner-Starlake Twp), western Jefferson
County, Dells area, western Lk Winnebago area, the WI-50 corridor between Kenosha and Lk
Geneva, Milwaukee area
Mississippi crossed: US-61
@ Dubuque, US-18 @ Prairie du Chien, WI-82 @ Lansing, US-90 @ Onalaska, US-14 @ LaCrosse;
US-63 @ Hager City. St. Croix crossed: I-94 @ Hudson, US-8 @ Taylors
Falls, WI-77 @ Danbury.
Future Plans: I
am not interested in Door County, but do plan on continuing explorations of the northwest
part of the state, most especially Bayfield County, which proved quite beautiful upon
passing through in June, '05. I would also like to canoe Horicon Marsh and visit Green
Lake, both remnants of an ancient glacial lake.
I cannot remember my first time in Wisconsin, but it was probably as a baby visiting my
grandparents in Delavan, where they lived for a little while. In my
earliest memories I can recall going to the state fair in Milwaukee and several early
trips to the Northwoods in the summers. (A family tradition since God knows when.)
Like most Chicagoans, Wisconsin is the place to go to get away from
Chicago so being someone who easily tires of the big city, I am often in
near-by Wisconsin. I feel really like it is a second home. (In
fact, I wrote this on my laptop in Sayner, WI.)
Small city is the middle of Wisconsin in more ways than
geographically. Park Ridge.
Marathon Co. (1982)
The rolling farmland gives way to the thick Northwoods near
here. Rib Mountain rises above the small city. Spencer. Unity.
Lincoln Co. (1982)
Where the road narrows and the woods close in. Tomahawk.
Bikers seem to like the name of this town. It has a nice lake or
Bradley. Heafford Jct.
Oneida Co. (1982)
The most sell out town in the Northwoods can be fun sometimes.
Aiming for the dollars of suburban tourists. I do enjoy Peck's
Wildlife Park, which has a fine collection of deer and one very
angry elk. Keep driving north for the real Northwoods
experience. Woodruff. Three Lakes. Monico. Pelican Lk. Tripoli.
Vilas Co. (1982)
Home away from home, where ten
miles is down the block. Arbor Vitae.
Swamp grass and thick forests.
The capital of the Northwoods in my eyes. This tiny town on Plum Lake has
been the occasional home of generations of my family. Eliason
Hardware was the birthplace of the snowmobile so there are miles
of snow trails in the woods. Woodlands Resort is the best place
to stay, across from islands where bald eagles nest and make
life hard for the loons. This place is heaven and I hope it
never sells out or changes too much. Starlake.
I usually enter town from deep in the woods along unpaved and
overgrown Starlake Rd. Tiny town on the shore of Star Lake and
the end of the beautiful road of Hwy K. Boulder
North of huge Trout Lake, this town (unlike its neighbors)
boasts everyday services like restaurants and gas stations. The
wide main drag ends with Mad Dog Jake's which sells excellent Chicago-style dogs. Presque Isle.
A string of small lakes surrounds this very small town and its
vicinity. The woods are thick here and a sign in one
establishment directs one countless miles to the nearest fast
food. Good place to stop on a road trip for ice cream.
Manitowish Waters. Winchester. Lac du Flambeau Res.
The town in the center of this reservation is a bit run down,
but the people are hospitable and happy you stopped. Large lakes
and great fishing. St. Germain.
Another town full of services and bait shops. Large Indian
greets you as you enter. This is the end of the road for many.
The only incorporated place for miles around. The main drag
caters to summer tourists and is a place to drop a few bucks on
food and t-shirts. The river through town is part of the
Wisconsin River headwaters. Conover. Northern
Highlands - American Legion SF. A superb
unadulterated island of forest of birch, pine, and ferns that
was saved mostly from the lumberjacks who plowed through the
areas surrounding to build up Chicago. Wildlife abounds, fishing is great, loon
calls fill the air. Writing this makes me wish I was at
desolate Lone Tree Lake ankle deep and looking for fish. Aurora
Lake (well, it used to be a lake in the spring) is another
Brown Co. (1983)
Unremarkable medium-sized Great Lakes industrial city. Important
to history and to football fans, but I usually pass through. Denmark.
Oconto Co. (1983)
Oconto. Pensaukee. Little
Langlade Co. (1983)
Antigo. Elcho. Deerbrook.
Waupaca Co. (1997)
New London. Fremont.
Iron Co. (1999)
Hurley. Pine Lk. Mercer.
Shawano Co. (2000)
Outagamie Co. (2000)
Marinette Co. (2001)
Jackson Co. (2001)
Black River Falls.
Trempealeau Co. (2001)
Eau Claire Co. (2001)
Dunn Co. (2001)
St Croix Co. (2001)
Hudson. New Richmond.
Polk Co. (2001)
St Croix Falls. Interstate
Barron Co. (2001)
Turtle Lk. Barron.
Rusk Co. (2001)
Ladysmith. Tony. Ingram.
Price Co. (2001)
Kennan. Catawba. Prentice.
Ogema. Timm's Hill. Spirit. Philips.
Taylor Co. (2001)
Clark Co. (2001)
Wood Co. (2001)
Pierce Co. (2002)
River Falls. Prescott.
Diamond Bluff. Hager City. Ellsworth. Beldenville.
Douglas Co. (2004)
Ashland Co. (2005)
Bad River Res. Odanah.
Bayfield Co. (2005)
Washburn. Bayfield. Red
Cliff Res. Mason. Grandview. Drummond. Cable.
Sawyer Co. (2005)
Washburn Co. (2005)
Minong. Lampson. Trego.
Burnett Co. (2005)
Hertel. St Croix Res.
Webster. Yellow Lk. Danbury.
The sun sets over Plum Lake, north of Sayner,
at the beautiful Woodlands Resort.
Aurora Lake in Vilas Co., like much of the Northwoods, is a sea of eutrified swamp and grass circled by
Saying good-bye to Plum Lake can be very
A fawn sleeping in gravel in
Peck's Wildlife Park near Minocqua.
Carrying fishing gear and oars to
the grassy boat launch that services Partridge Lake in
the middle of Vilas County.
Photos (c) 2000-2007by J. Bezold, S.
Plencner. All rights reserved.