Lake Country Tour
Lake Country Tour
Drive Dates: Thursday, October 14, and Saturday, October 16
Total Drive Distance: 172 miles
Estimated total tour duration: 7.5 hours
Wisconsin is officially home to 15,074 lakes, and we will see a good number of them on this tour. From Kohler, we will motor west to access the North Kettle Moraine Forest, where we will observe landforms left by the last-departing glacier some 10,000 years ago. The area exhibits topsy-turvy terrain, native hard-wood and coniferous forests, and wildlife – keep an eye out for white-tailed deer! Many of the roads have been designated Rustic Roads by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.
One of the glacial artifacts that we will pass by is 932-acre Big Cedar Lake. It’s a great fishing lake, supporting trophy-sized pike (for which there is a 40-inch minimum-size requirement), as well as walleye, perch, crappies, and blue-gills.
We will continue driving twisty, hilly, scenic roads as we motor to historic Holy Hill, where a Catholic Basilica sits upon the highest piece of land (a glacial kame) in southeastern Wisconsin. From the top of the towers (a 178-step climb!) at Holy Hill, you can see skyscrapers in downtown Milwaukee, some 30 miles to the southeast, as well as get a 360-degree view of gorgeous trees in all their autumnal splendor.
After our visit to Holy Hill, we will return to our cars and travel some of the curviest roads in Waukesha County as we traverse the countryside, past many more lakes toward our lunch destination. This area, located west of Milwaukee, has a particularly dense concentration of glacier-formed lakes, and is known to locals as “Lake Country.”
Our lunch stop is in Oconomowoc, one of Wisconsin’s many cities featuring Native American names, at Lago Su Bella which overlooks beautiful Lac La Belle. Chef Joe Volpe, who grew up in a restaurant family in Naples, Florida, and who studied in New Orleans under Chef Emeril Lagasse, will be our host.
Our tour officially ends after lunch. Those who wish to return to the American Club together can follow a tour leader, who will depart shortly after lunch. However, you might opt to linger for an hour, or so, in Oconomowoc, to experience its shops, parks, lake views, and friendly residents, before heading back to Kohler on your own.
Remember to be back to The American Club in time for the evening’s festivities. The return trip is approximately 87 miles and will take about 1-1/2 hours, on main highways including Interstates I-94 and I-43.