Last week, we took a trip up north to one of our favorite mountain destinations. McCall is a beautiful resort town that surrounds the sparkling blue waters of Payette Lake. From open farmland to majestic evergreens, the drive alone is picturesque and serene. We love visiting the mountains — there’s something about the crisp mountain air, breathtaking views and peacefulness that seems to make you breathe in a little deeper and fully take in your surroundings. The town of McCall is dotted with charming shops, restaurants/cafes, hotels, and being a hub for numerous sports, there are a variety of sport shops and rentals.
It’s our family tradition to first stop for a late breakfast at McCall’s Pancake House. The first time we ate there, we ordered several pancakes not realizing that each pancake is the size of an entire dinner plate! Now we know how to order accordingly. The restaurant is attached to the Christmas House which is open year round. (should you decide to do a little impromptu Christmas shopping in the midst of summer) The girls and I could easily spend an hour (or two!) in that shop — there are literally hundreds of Christmas ornaments, a huge collection of nutcrackers, Christmas throws, pillows, glassware and artwork — in addition to gifts and décor for the current season.
After breakfast, we headed into the neighboring town of Donnelly to visit our favorite hot springs. Five separate pools gradually become cooler as you work your way from the top to the bottom. When I say cooler, the water is never cooler than lukewarm bath water. The views are incredible! We often see deer wandering through nearby trees or chipmunks scurrying along the decks and rocks. The warm water always feels so relaxing, refreshing and rejuvenating. I’m pretty sure that every time we visit, I dreamily ask my husband if he would like to move there … or maybe a vacation home someday?
Heading back into McCall, we stopped for dinner at the Toll House
…then immediately headed to our favorite spot for ice-cream! Ice Cream Alley is exactly what it’s name describes — a small (but fabulous) ice-cream stand situated in a cozy alley.
There is a small patio to sit and relax, but we typically walk down to the lake and eat our ice cream along the beach. It’s an ideal spot for watching sailboats glide by and taking in the sunset.