McCall, Idaho: Weekend Escape

Winter means powder-covered slopes, snow sculptures, and soul-warming eats in this timber town turned laid-back lakeside resort.

Gallery Fifty-Five in McCall Idaho, image

Browse local artists’ works at Gallery Fifty-Five.

glasses of beer at Salmon River Brewery, image

Seasonal beer selections are on tap at Salmon River Brewery.

interior of the Pancake House in McCall Idaho, image

The Pancake House lures breakfast guests with rustic charm.

Pueblo Lindo serves Mexican classics, image

Pueblo Lindo serves Mexican classics.

IF YOU'RE GOING...

Take advantage of the area’s local amenities and services:

View places to see, stay, and eat

To Do and See
Activity Barn Whoosh down a 700-foot snow-tube run served by a rope tow, then warm up with hot cocoa beside the wood-burning stove in a little red yurt. 141 Moonridge Dr., 634-2222, activitybarn.com. Brundage Mountain Resort Upward of 325 inches of fluffy powder each season draws snowboarders and downhill skiers to groomed runs and backcountry adventures. 3890 Goose Lake Rd., 634-4151, brundage.com. The Cove Treat yourself to a pedicure, facial, or hot-stone massage, or simply loll in outdoor and indoor saline pools kept at a toasty 102 degrees. 501 W. Lake St., 630-0280, thecovemccall.com. Manchester Ice & Event Centre Enjoy an ice show or strap on a pair of skates and glide across the rink of this indoor arena. 200 E. Lake St., 634-3570, manchestericecenter.com. Ponderosa State Park Nearly 16 miles of snowshoe and groomed Nordic ski trails crisscross this forested, 1,500-acre peninsula jutting into the sparkling waters of Payette Lake just north of downtown. 634-2164, parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/ponderosa. Winter Carnival McCall’s annual cold-season bash—Jan. 24 to Feb. 2 this year—features fireworks over the lake, live music, parades, and a long-beard contest. Past entrants in the snow sculpture competition have included giant dragons and a Lord of the Rings Hobbit house. 634-7631, mccallchamber.org.

Shopping
Bella Kitchen Colorful aprons, gleaming copper skillets, Idaho-shaped cookie cutters, and other kitchen goods fill a pocket-size shop housed in the town’s former train station. 401 E. Lenora St., 634-4730, bellakitchen.com. Gallery Fifty-Five Browse watercolor landscapes, whimsical ceramic fish, sterling and turquoise necklaces, and other works by local artists. 317 E. Lake St., 634-6313, galleryfiftyfive.wordpress.com. Granite Mountain Nature Gallery At this cornucopia of Earth’s treasures, you’ll find everything from glistening amethyst chunks, intricate rose-quartz carvings, and tiny trilobite fossils to framed butterflies, spiders, and beetles. 305 E. Park St., 634-1111, granitemountainng.com.

Eats
Evening Rise Bread Company There’s good reason people line up at this bakery where bulging sandwiches are assembled on ciabatta, nine-grain, and other house-baked breads. 303 Sunset St., 634-5031. Pancake House In this pinepaneled eatery with a year-round Christmas shop, the namesake flapjacks come lumberjack size and fluffy, made with your choice of sourdough or buttermilk batter. 209 N. Third St., 634-5849, mccallpancakehouse.com. Pueblo Lindo Stop into this family-friendly spot for enchiladas, chicken in mole sauce, slow-cooked pork chile verde, and other Mexican classics. 1007 W. Lake St., 634-2270. Rupert’s Take in a fine view of the lake and mountain as you dine on seasonal dishes such as venison meatballs with juniper-infused cabbage slaw and a roastedbeet salad brightened with citrus, hazelnuts, and feta. 1101 N. Third St., 634-8108, rupertsathotelmccall.com. Salmon River Brewery Pair an elk burger, Baja fish tacos, or a grilled smoked brat with a pint of hoppy Salmon River Shiver IPA or crisp Udaho Gold ale at a cozy brewpub where kids are welcome. 300 Colorado St., 634-4772, salmonriverbrewery.com. Stacey Cakes Think you can resist the chewy gingersnaps, apple pie brioche, chocolate crackle tart, or salted caramel cheesecake at this bakery with a small eat-in area? Think again. 136 E. Lake St., 634-2537.

Photography by Kirsten Shultz

This article was first published in January 2014. Some facts my have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.

If You're Going: 

Request the Idaho, Montana & Wyoming TourBook and an Idaho map at AAA.com or any AAA branch. To find a place to stay, visit AAA.com/hotels. For more information, contact the McCall Chamber of Commerce: 301 E. Lake St., 634-7631, mccallchamber.org.

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