One of my favorite places in the world is the Wisconsin River which runs the entire length of the state starting in Lac Vieux Desert on the border with the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It then runs south and dissects the state until turning directly west near Madison to meet with the Mississippi near Prairie Du Chien.
The last 92 miles of the river from the last dam at Sauk City is the premier portion of the river for canoeing and camping. This section is called the Lower Wisconsin River Valley and it is characterized by beautiful bluffs, golden sand bars, bald eagles flying off of every dead tree, tree line river banks, and exceptional canoeing and camping.
I have been fortunate enough to have canoed this river for over 30 years, and I have probably averaged at least a trip and a half per year, so I have been on it close to or more than 50 times. I have never grown tired of it and everyone who I have ever paddled with seems to share the sentiment, including my dad.
This last weekend marked another successful trip canoeing, camping, swimming, enjoying the campfire, spotting bald eagles and other birds, and just enjoying life in the great outdoors of Wisconsin.
If this type of adventure appeals to you, and you don’t know how to get started, check out Wisconsin River Outings in Sauk City and Boscobel.
The goal of Traveling Ted is to inspire people to outdoor adventure travel and then provide tips on where and how to go. If you liked this post then enter your email in the box to get email notifications for each new entry. Daily travel photos are excluded from your email in order to not flood you with posts. There is no spam and email information will not be shared. Other e-follow options include Facebook (click on the like box to the right) or twitter (click on the pretty bird on the rainbow above).
On the right sidebar is a donate button. If you would like to donate in order to support the site, it would be appreciated. All donations would cover travel expenses and improvements to make the site better.
Great pictures! Looks like you guys had a great time!
Paddling the Wisconsin River is always a great time Natasha. As always, you and your dad were brought up many times in the course of the weekend’s conversation on the river and at the campfire.
Have you done that entire stretch in one trip? If so how long does it take? I’m afraid I’d have too many beers and I’d be too slow.
Trips By Lance recently posted..Five Ways to Experience Baseball Travel
The most I have ever done in one stretch is five days and we covered about 50 miles, so we did about half of the lower stretch. The current runs at a pretty good clip, so if you want to make time you could do the 92 miles in three days, but the river is too beautiful to canoe in that manner. We always paddle for an hour, then stop and swim and drink beer for an hour then paddle for an hour and repeat.
Another great adventure 🙂
I love a gentle canoe down a stream. Going up stream into the wind is another story but 😉
Nicole @ Green Global Travel recently posted..10 Ancient Archaeological Sites For Your World Travel Bucket List
I am not a big fan of canoeing upstream into the wind either. There is enough adventure canoeing normally without creating extra work.
It looks like heaven and to share it with your father has to be wonderful! Enjoy ot while you can! Saludos mi amigo!
It is a wonderful place. We have been canoeing on this river for over 30 years. A lot of great memories on those sandbars.
Would I ever enjoy a weekend like this!! It doesn’t look from your photos that you’re fighting for space or privacy. And good for you for continuing to do adventures with your Dad.
Leigh recently posted..Kayaking the World’s Highest Tides in the Cape Chignecto Area
Funny you mention that as our second night we were invaded by some young men at our sandbar, which has never happened before. To their credit, instead of being in our face next to us, they went back in the woods away to get as far away from us as possible. They apologized the next morning for moving in on us and said there was nowhere else to camp.
The water was a little high for this time of year. When the water is lower, there are plenty of places to go and spread out. Even when the river is busy, you can find a place around the corner with complete solitude. If you paddle during the week or during off peak times you will have the river to yourself.
There’s just something so relaxing about canoeing, right?
jill recently posted..“Goodbye God, I’m going to Bodie” – A Visit to California Ghost Town
You said it Jill. There is something relaxing about watching the river flow and then enjoying a pleasant campfire at night.