Wisconsin

Land of the Cheese. I’m going to say yes but I probably should say no. I didn’t get much sight seeing done as I was only there a few days. I think I may have touched on the visit when talking about Illinois and Chicago O’hare International Airport. So rather than repeat myself; let’s just say it’s the journey, not the destination!

cheese

My brother retired from the Navy at the base in Wisconsin. He was stationed there and living in Kenosha so I had the chance to fly in for the ceremony and visit his home and that was about it. I’m sure there’s so much more to the state so let’s see what I can dig up.

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Wisconsin shares it’s shores with Lake Michigan and Lake Superior, 2 of the largest of  the 5 great lakes. In size Lake Superior is #1, Lake Michigan is #3, right behind Lake Heron.

Lake-Superior

Seems to me Lake Superior deserves a visit. It’s the largest freshwater body in the world and a great place to visit would be The Apostle Islands. 22 islands strewn over 450 square miles, they range from tiny Gull island (3 acres) to 10,000 acre Stockton Island.

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Heading south from the Great Lakes you’ll find the famous cheese country from Monroe to Mineral Point. Here the rolling hills and river valleys attracted dairy farmers starting in the 1800’s. Today it is the heartland of  Wisconsin’s dairyland where cheese making remains a generations-old fine art.

dairy

In Ontario, Wisconsin you can explore the “Driftless area”  all  serpentine valleys, crooked rivers, craggy bluffs and limestone. The Kickapoo River best characterizes this geology. Sometimes called the “crookedest river in the nation”. One of the oldest river systems in the world, the Kickapoo winds for 120 miles to cover a 65 mile distance. It’s a lazy spring-fed river of easy paddling except during the spring run off.

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Running from Prairie du Chien to Prescott is the Great River Road or at least part of it. The 250 miles is only a fraction of the whole byway running the length of the Mississippi River. This stretch slaloms between the Mississippi and it’s towering bluffs. The road will take you through sleepy river towns, past busy barge traffic, braided backwaters, wildlife preserves   and birds, birds, birds. This is part of the Mississippi Flyway. More than 40% of the Nation’s waterfowl and shorebirds pass this way.

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In the southern end of the state, not far from Chicago, Illinois is Lake Geneva. The area has a resort-like feel and attracts vacationers from all over. The lake is a pristine spring-fed lake 22 miles in circumference. Being only 10 miles from the state line you can see how it would attract city weary residents of Chicago.

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There’s more, from the North Country to Circus World, Amish settlements  to Madison’s Dane County Farmers’ Market but I’ll leave some of that for another time.

The count is now 21/ 28. Only one more state to go.

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