Monday, July 9, 2012

Northern Wisconsin - One of God's Miracles

We just returned from four days in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.  If you have ever been north of Minocqua, you know the feeling of relaxation and peace that settles in as you drive up the state.  If you have never been north, it is way past time.  This trip we stayed at the Carlin Club Lodge in Presque Isle, overlooking Carlin Lake.  We visited friends who live on Rainbow Lake and enjoyed the approaching dusk looking over the mirror-glass water, and then as if on cue, we heard the call of the resident loon.  Each lake is said to have its own loon pair and we managed to see the red-eyed couple for this lake.  Deer and bear, and sometimes even wolves cross the back highways and come to the houses looking for food.  You just have to make sure you have some!

Beyond the pine forests and abundance of waterways, the next best thing is the dining experience in the northwoods.  Classic supper clubs abound as do the more frequent pub food bars.  Some are better than others, but the northern crowd is discriminating, so bad food will shutter the place faster than the mortgage company.

Friday fish frys vary as well, but most withstand the taste test and you should always leave full.  Battered cod or haddock, pan-fried walleye, and lake perch are the mainstays.  Even those who are not fish fans will partake, at least for a bite.  The standard drink, the Old Fashioned, is crafted by good bartenders who muddle the cherry, orange, sugar and bitters, before splashing in the brandy (or if you prefer, whiskey), and top it with 7-up.   That is the experience that makes the trip worthwhile.  Sure, you can boat, ski, tube, camp, golf, and many other things, but finding a quiet spot on the lakeshore, seeing a loon dive for food, with a cool drink in hand is, indeed, heaven.  Thank you Lord for the exquisite beauty of the Wisconsin Northwoods.

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