Lac Vieux Desert Lake

Lac Vieux Desert Lake, also referred to as Old Village Lake, straddles the border between Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and Wisconsin, offering a beautiful natural retreat. Here’s a breakdown of its key features:

Books about Lac Vieux Desert Lake:

Lac Vieux Desert Lake Fun Book: A Fun and Educational Book About Lake Lac Vieux Desert

Lac Vieux Desert Lake Safety Book: The Essential Lake Safety Guide For Children


Location and Size:

  • Situated in Gogebic County, Michigan, and Vilas County, Wisconsin, with a larger portion (approximately two-thirds) lying within Wisconsin.
  • Covers an impressive surface area of approximately 4,260 acres (17.24 square kilometers) with a shoreline stretching over 34 miles (55 kilometers).

History and Meaning:

  • The name “Lac Vieux Desert” comes from the French translation of the Ojibwe term “Gete-gitigaani-zaaga’igan,” meaning “Lake of the Old Clearing” or “Old Garden.” This refers to potential cultivation practices on the islands within the lake by the Ojibwe people who inhabited the area historically.

Natural Beauty and Activities:

  • Renowned for its scenic beauty, with numerous small islands dotting the lake, particularly in its northeastern section.
  • The headwaters of the Wisconsin River flow out of the lake’s southwest corner.
  • Popular for various outdoor activities, including:
    • Fishing: A haven for anglers, boasting healthy populations of walleye, musky, northern pike, perch, and smallmouth bass. Remember to obtain a fishing license following the regulations of the specific state section you’re fishing in.
    • Boating: Enjoy peaceful pontoon cruises, explore hidden coves, or water ski on designated areas. Adhere to regulations regarding motorized watercraft.
    • Camping: Several campgrounds are located near the lake, offering opportunities for a nature getaway.

Surroundings and Amenities:

  • Nestled amidst the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest in Wisconsin and Ottawa National Forest in Michigan, providing a lush and serene environment.
  • Limited development surrounds the lake, with some resorts and cabins offering lodging options.
  • Nearby towns like Land O’ Lakes, Wisconsin, and Ironwood, Michigan, provide additional amenities like restaurants, shops, and gas stations.

Additional Information:

  • The maximum depth of Lac Vieux Desert Lake reaches around 40 feet (12 meters).
  • During peak season, especially summer months, the lake can get busier.
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