Six Western swimming spots are the perfect antidote to summer.
PLAY The beach at Glenn Otto Park eases into a bend in the Sandy River. Swim for the sandbar, then cool off under evergreens. (503) 665-5175.
STAY The amenities at the television-free McMenamins Edgefield resort include a working winery, distillery, and brewery, and a heated outdoor soaking pool full of salt water. From $70. (800) 669-8610, mcmenamins.com .
EAT Call ahead for a table at Tad’s Chicken ’n Dumplins, where $14.50 buys the restaurant’s namesake entrée along with salad, green beans, and bread. (503) 666-5337, tadschicdump.com .
Cottage Grove, Ore.
PLAY Families flock to the warm shallows of Baker Bay on Dorena Reservoir and picnic around the swimming hole at Wildwood Falls east of town. dorenalake.com .
STAY Verbena blooms in pink and purple clusters at the 14-acre Village Green Resort & Gardens. From $90.* (800) 966-6490, villagegreenresortandgardens.com .
EAT At Big Stuff Barbecue, share a smoky, Texas-style rib sampler (beef, pork, and two sides) for $11.50. (541) 942-3999, bigstuffbarbecue.com .
PLAY After visiting Payette Lake’s bustling lakeshore, try the 100-degree swimming pool in the tranquil meadow at Burgdorf Hot Springs ($5). (208) 636-3036.
STAY Opposite a sandy public beach, Hotel McCall offers a sheltered open-air pool, cookies and milk,and a 400-DVD library. From $135. (866) 800-1183, hotelmccall.com .
EAT Veggie nut burgers with mushrooms, cheese, and onions ($6) and extra-thick huckleberry shakes ($4.50) are trademarks at My Father’s Place. (208) 634-4401.
Nevada City, Calif.
PLAY Highway 49’s many turnouts lead to the Yuba River’s pools. Find sandy stretches under Bridgeport Bridge at South Yuba River State Park. (530) 432-2546, parks.ca.gov .
STAY Victorian amenities from claw-foot tubs to minichandeliers sparkle at the Holbrooke Hotel, where Mark Twain once slept. From $125 for AAA members. (800) 933-7077, holbrooke.com .
EAT On the shaded patio at Diegos Restaurant, enjoy such Latin treats as chilled melon soup ($5) and 10 tapas dishes for $12 or less. (530) 477-1460, diegosrestaurant.com .
PLAY Mountain vistas and public beaches ring popular Pineview Reservoir, whose placid inlets warm up past 70 degrees by July. (866) 867-8824.
STAY At the Atomic Chalet Bed & Breakfast, a short walk from the water, enjoy granola-and-yogurt breakfasts and marble baths. From $95. (801) 745-0538, atomicchalet.com .
EAT Mosey into the Shooting Star Saloon—Utah’s oldest bar—and sink your teeth into a double-decker, sausage-topped Star Burger ($7). (801) 745-2002.
Great Falls, Mont.
PLAY Outside town, relax on the Belt Creek sandbar at Sluice Boxes State Park or follow a rough trail to gin-clear pools. (406) 454-5840, fwp.mt.gov/parks .
STAY Mermaids frolic behind the glass wall of the O’Haire Motor Inn’s indoor pool in the renowned Sip-n-Dip Lounge. From $60 for AAA members. (800) 332-9819, ohairemotorinn.com .
EAT Try the BLT ($7) at the Black Diamond Bar and Supper Club in nearby Belt during weekends-only lunch. (406) 277-4118.
PLAY An eight-mile squiggle of turquoise water alongside Highway 83, Swan Lake is best enjoyed from the southeast shore. (406) 837-7500, visitmt.com .
STAY Set on a slope, Swan Lake Guest Cabins sport porch swings facing the lake and Crane Mountain sunsets. From $100. (888) 837-1557, swanlakeguestcabins.com .
EAT Hot blueberry-raspberry sauce tops French toast and five types of waffles (all of them under $10) at the Echo Lake Cafe. (406) 837-4252, echolakecafe.com .
*For AAA members
Photography by Erik Isakson /Tetra Images/Corbis
This article was first published in July 2010. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.