Trophy fisherman Walter Krause, who has 15 years' experience on the Illinois Muskie Tournament Trail and the Pro Musky Tournament Trail, takes up to two anglers aboard his private boat for a guided trip through two fish-filled Illinois lakes. Whether plumbing the depths of Cedar Lake for striper or pursuing Kinkaid Lake—one of the top trophy-muskie lakes in Illinois—for oversize bass, muskies, and walleyes, participants benefit from Walter’s 46 years of experience and on-board depth finders and GPS. During the course of each customized trip, visitors learn how to track fish movements, how to properly hold rods, and how to train a wall-mounted singing fish to bait other fish with its seductive crooning. Walter provides each angler with life jackets, bait, tackle, and rods, although participants must bring their own fishing licenses, lunches, and weather-appropriate clothing.
StarView Vineyards is home to both native and French-American hybrid grapes that flourish on the vine during breezy, sunny summers. Seven varieties emerge from those vines, resulting in 12 signature wines, from the semi-dry, citrusy vignoles to the Red Star, a semi-sweet chambourcin. Stop by the tasting room to sip samples of these blends?along with wine slushies and sangrias?or head to the cafe to snack on grilled chicken sandwiches and pasta salad.
Whether you're bobbing in the 18,000-square-foot wave pool or screaming down the Dueling Demon speed slide, there's never a dull?or dry?moment at Venture River Water Park. But the park's attractions aren't just for thrill-seekers; smaller family members can head to the kiddie pool, which features mini slides, a mushroom-shaped waterfall, and plenty of lounge chairs for parents. Party packages make a splash with kids of all ages with snacks, drinks, a birthday cake, and a ceremonial procession down the Old Man River.
• For $35, you get one round of golf for two on the championship course with cart rental Monday-Friday (up to a $74 value). • For $45, you get one round of golf for two on the championship course with cart rental Saturday and Sunday (up to a $94 value).
Unlike most flight-training schools that teach students how to fly planes, Easy Flight instructs clients on how to command open-air powered parachutes. These wheeled aircraft are equipped with a small motor and a multihued parachute that whisk flyers along on leisurely jaunts. Once in the air, pilots soar along closer to the ground than they would in an airplane, which gives them a more detailed view of the scenery below and the ability to distinguish a fresh buzz cut on a passing bird.
Just across the bay from the Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, Kentucky Dam Village is a modern campground comprised of 210 campsites, each equipped with water and electricity hookups. There's a cluster of service buildings at the center of the campground that offer modern amenities, too, including showers, restrooms, three dump stations, and a grocery store.
The 17,000-acre recreation area near the campground is a popular spot for bird watching as well as canoeing and bass fishing at its two lakes, Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake. More than 200 miles of hiking trails crisscross the peninsula, ranging from short walks to lengthier routes. You can hike shorter portions of the 58-mile North-South Trail, which spans the entire length of the Land Between the Lakes. While hiking, you may catch a glimpse of wildlife including white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, foxes, and coyotes.