Hawksnest is so pure you can see right to the bottom from a canoe. When I was a kid living on its shore, I could drink the water as I swam. And yet it was warm enough for comfortable swimming. You'd come back from a swim cleaner than you went in (now a radical idea in Wisconsin). The bottom is sandy, not mucky--there are no weeds to tangle your legs.
That's why I'm a crusader for water quality. I've experienced pure water, and I can't forget what it's like.
And what does Lake Mendota have to teach Hawksnest?
Sadly, it's a warning. People who visit Hawksnest are oblivious to its rare value, take it for granted, and are hell-bent on abusing till it becomes just like Lake Mendota.
If Hawksnest could give some sisterly advice to Mendota, she would say: "Look at my shore. Everywhere it's clothed in vegetation. Not a drop of rainwater gets into my body--unless if falls on my face, or flows through the ground, or flows through my "skin" of shoreland plants. I need my shoreland zone. Puncture that, and I'll start to die."