Castle Rock
Petenwell Lakes
807 Division St.
Mauston WI 53948
Juneau and Adams County in Wisconsin Juneau and Adams County in Wisconsin
Lemonweir River Adventures
Whether you're partial to tubing, canoeing and motorized watercraft, the Lemonweir River is loads of FUN!
In 1838 the only settlement found was a Native American one: To-Kau-Nee in Mauston. Eventually the yellow flowing waters were named Le-Mo-Wee - Lemonweir - "The River of Memories" by a Native American whose dream was fulfilled on the banks of the Lemonweir River.
Castle Rock Petenwell Lakes Bull Frogs
Castle Rock Petenwell Lakes Lillypads
To kayak/canoe this river one can put in at the County Trunk H bridge, 5 miles north of Camp Douglas. The first landmark on the route is Freeborn's Bridge about 2 miles downstream, Then the river loops and twists its way to Lone Rock Bridge where the road and river run parallel for short stretches.
Buckley's Bridge is at the point where County M crosses the river. Here was the site of Buckley's Mill built in 1850 by the first settler of Clearfield township. The stone foundations may still be seen.
At Kennedy Park, the next landmark, you will find virgin timber and a glimpse of Juneau County as it looked when it was first settled. The park has a boat launch, well pump water, outhouse facilities and camping.
To portage the dam, use the left bank. Below the dam, the rivers current slows and the stream begins to meander,. Webster Creek, a brook trout stream, enters on the right about 1 mile downstream. Approximately 1 mile beyond this point there is an opening in the trees which permits a view of the Panther Effigy Mounds. This is the stretch to Mauston and is a day trip. There are numerous trees in the river and is only recommended for experienced paddlers or adventurous obstacle seekers,
The Little Dells are rock formation found halfway between New Lisbon and Mauston.
When the current slows to almost nothing, you have arrived at the island-studded headwaters of Decorah Lake. The lake derives its name from a prominent Ho-Chunk family that live in the area. During World War I, 35 of the Decorah family enlisted in the Army.
You may take out at the Outdoors Forever public boat landing located off Hwy 12 & 16 about 1.5 miles west of Mauston. Paddle further around the hilly headland, known locally as Little Bluff, or at the public boat landing at Riverside Park on the right shoreline in Mauston. There are covered picnic shelters, flush toilets and park playground equipment.
The dam at Mauston was built in 1842 to run a sawmill cutting the pine logs harvested along the rivers edges. Today the Mill is gone and the spill way is present. It is not recommended to portage close to this site. Use extreme caution and exit prior the location. Public landings are available on both sides of the river below this site.
The Lemonweir River becomes even more winding as it continues from Mauston to its confluence with the Wisconsin River. The river banks remain heavily wooded all along the route and there is little noticeable home development. Country Cruisin' Kayaks and Canoes are outfitters in Mauston and offer a variety of paddle packages.
Castle Rock Petenwell Lakes Winter Fishing Petenwell Dam
Castle Rock Petenwell Lakes Blue Heron
The current below the dam in Mauston is quite fast and during flood stage it is never recommended to be on the water. In normal conditions the river flows downstream at an enjoyable pace. Approximately 1 mile the One Mile Creek enters the river on the right bank. This creek is a brown trout stream. Continuing the paddle you will travel under the Interstate bridge.
The Lemonweir Millpond will be your first take-out if you so choose. The Millpond was formed by an old mill dam built in l852 for the first flouring mill in Juneau County. The town of Lemonweir surrounding the millpond was a platted village built on hopes of overtaking much of the trade in the area. However, the placement of the railroad line through Mauston in 1857 put an end to that dream. The grist mill closed in l930's and the power plant maintained by Wisconsin Power and Light Co. closed in 1950. A stone quarry at this site provided stone for many of the buildings in Mauston and the surrounding area. The dam has been removed and a public boat landing is available. There are sand bars in the Millpond area and it is also a popular fishing spot. The Lemonweir Township Hall is just up the road a block and offers a variety of information regarding the area for prospective home ownership and business adventures.
Sevenmile Creek joins the Lemonweir River about 1 1/4 miles downstream.
The Lemonweir River now begins to widen a bit and begins a series of many twists and turns to all points on the compass. There are sloughs and backwaters to explore or avoid and then at last you will pass under the County Hwy HH bridge where there is a public boat landing just a short distance away. Then you will paddle under a foot bridge overhead and on your immediate left is the HH public boat landing. This is a rustic landing with no amenities available. There may be times in the spring or after heavy rains that the County road HH bridge over the Lemonweir River may be closed and under water. During flood times it is never a time to be paddling. Always check weather and water conditions.
Continuing your journey you will reach the confluence of the Lemonweir and Wisconsin Rivers. Just a short distance downstream will be Two Rivers County boat landing. Watch off to your right for a large sandstone bluff and proceed into the inlet. This will be your landing site. There is a large public parking area and primitive restrooms. Because water levels can fluctuate the water going to or from the ramp may be very shallow and muddy; or the water could cover the ramp entirely. Always check the water conditions and currents before planning a trip on the big Wisconsin River water.
Castle Rock Petenwell Lakes Strolling By The Lake
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