Taking a Jump
(ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: MAY/JUNE 2005)
Every person should have at least one breathless, wide-eyed moment in life that took place mid-air, arms and legs askew, between a leap off a sun-weathered wooden dock and a flop into a clear Midwestern lake.
It’s a natural. Something that eventually happens when you throw together a lake, a dock, a cabin and a string of empty days. These elements in place, all kinds of core lake-leisure moments reel in. Early-morning sun glossing gentle wave crests. A lakefront find in the hands of a soggy, sand-frosted child. Starlit bonfire chats stopped only when yawns start. This is what summer travelers seek. Well, most do. Beaches and lakes figure into about three-quarters of summer plans, according to the Travel Industry Association of America. Here in the Midwest, we have plenty of both.
To improve on this cherished classic, we consulted experts in fields such as sandcastle building and spooky-campfire-storytelling. Their advice aims to make your entire week at the lake more like that moment right before you hit the water—pure fun, and a little closer to perfect.