LAKE WIN­NEBAGO

Boating - - MOTORHEAD -

The largest lake in Wis­con­sin cov­ers 215 square miles, is 30 miles long and 10 miles wide, and has an av­er­age depth of just 15.5 feet. Its Al­go­nquin neigh­bors called the lo­cal Ho-Chunk na­tive tribe “win­nebago,” which meant “peo­ple of the filthy wa­ter,” be­cause the area had a strong fish odor. Re­ally just a wide spot in the Fox River, what is now the lake was a wild-rice marsh be­fore Euro­peans con­structed a se­ries of dams for lum­ber mills be­tween Me­nasha and Green Bay. The city of Fond du Lac (French for “bot­tom of the lake”) is the home of Mer­cury Marine, and in the 1950s and ’60s the lake hosted an­nual power­boat en­durance races.

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