Going for a boat ride with Dad on the Horicon Marsh is one of my all-time favorite things!
The Horicon Marsh is the largest cattail marsh in the U.S., spanning some 32,000 acres. The northern two-thirds is federally owned and managed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. The southern third, where we would be cruising, is managed by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
I grew up in Horicon, so I'm familiar with this wondrous place, but Dad is an expert. Lifelong resident (except for a the last 15 winters spent in Arkansas), avid hunter, and local historian, he is in his element on the marsh.
When his forefathers immigrated from Germany, they settled on the southern edge of the marsh, farming, gardening, hunting, trapping, and acting as guides for the private hunt clubs whose members from Milwaukee and Chicago paid for the privilege of hunting the marsh.
This was our ride, Dad's trusty fishing/hunting boat that's probably as old as I am, an appropriate vessel for these waters.
It's been a good five years since I've taken this trip. Long enough to notice changes in the landscape of the islands, including fewer trees, and a different policy regarding removal of deadfalls (i.e., they are left as is, not removed).
Although it may just look like an expansive cattail marsh to most people, Dad knows every one of the numerous landmarks by name and significance: Stony Bay, Neitzel's Slough, One-Mile Island, Cotton Island, Steamboat Island, Miescke's Ditch, Clark's Ditch, etc.
He pointed out his hunting spot this year in a little slough which promises to be well populated with waterfowl. Duck season opens Saturday. It's what's for dinner next weekend.
The colors weren't quite peak, but the trees made for beautiful reflections nonetheless.
On our way back to the boathouse, we followed the river back through town, past the plant that makes the pretty yellow and green lawn equipment, the company from which Dad retired in the mid '80s.
The river used to be lined with boathouses through town. Now only a handful remain. Remember when I said, in my bathroom redo post, that the framed picture reminded me of places I've known?
We passed a house with an old root cellar built into the slope of the riverbank, "Where they used to keep all the beer," Dad said. He's been inside the cellar; it's empty now.
It was such a gorgeous, special day, and we had a wonderful time. Hope you enjoyed it too!
See what favorite things others are sharing today at Quilting in My Pyjamas' Favourite Things Friday. Thanks for visiting!