Sunday, September 4, 2011

McCall, Idaho

A beautiful area and a lovely resort town.  We stayed at the Ponderosa State Park which is on a peninsula jutting out into Payette Lake.  There were trails to hike which the pups enjoyed and some beautiful views.  Dotted around the lake are private homes with very high price tags.  The lake is very popular for water sports in the summer and skiing, snow-showing, etc, in the winter.  It is also big for hunting so most of the year there is something going on.

Payette Lake from the Narrows Outlook 

 The basalt cliffs that form the peninsula of Ponderosa State Park are part of the enormous flows of lava that came from the Columbia Plateau about 5,000 years ago.  Glaciers formed in valleys carving out Payette Lake.  As the glaciers receded they left debris of rock, sand and other material forming a dam which holds back the water of Payette Lake.

The basalt rock under the terra firma.
One hundred years McCall was started as a logging town that eventually went bust so tourism picked up the slack.  Luckily, the town fathers had insight and redeveloped the downtown into parks, shoppes, breweries (yes, there were two and we went to both) and fine restaurants.  There is an area for swimming right in the center of town so everyone can have easy access to the lake.   

Part of the downtown decor.

Main Street driving down toward the lake.

Part of the downtown beach area and a bronze sculpture of bears.

The wood for the front entrance and the bench seats was cut from the neighboring hillsides.  It looks like Ponderosa Pine.  Inside the building is a year round ice skating rink.

While there we went to a farmer's market in McCall that is held on Wednesday and Saturday.  They were selling buffalo steaks at $20.00 a lb so Brett decided to buy some.  He bought a buffalo T-bone that was made up of tenderloin and  New York strip.  Seeing a number 14 on the package he thought it meant 14 ounces.  What a surprise when it weighed in over 2.5 lbs.  Then he bought a loaf of specially made organic bread for only $7.50 a loaf.  He also bought two muffins, one blackberry and one huckleberry that were made from  hand ground organic flour at only $3.50 get the picture.  We won't even talk about the raspberries, blueberries, squash, zucchini, peppers, organic onion, etc.  I thought farmer's markets were supposed to be cheaper?  We haven't had the steak yet but the other items were very good!

The second day there the temperature cooled off and it dropped to 38 degrees that night with the high only in the sixties the next day so everyone had to bundle up.  We stayed for 4 days and had a great time, hiked a lot of trails, biked a bit and really enjoyed the town and the state park.

Enjoying a cool dip.

Osprey again.  We're getting better at the closeups.

Who's watching whom?

Payette Lake from Osprey Cliff.

Wouldn't you love to own a home here.

Even a marsh area up in the mountains.

Lucy had to get into it, of course!

Dressing for cooler weather.
On to Hagerman, ID, and the next adventure.  Hear they have a few good wineries in the area!  Peace to all.

For our trivia buffs: 
What is the state fruit of Idaho?

Huckleberries - wonderful in ice cream, cookies, muffins, coffee........just ask Brett !

For additional pictures - we've attempted to create a link at the top of the blog called High Hopes Album.  Just click (or double click) on that link and it should take you to the Picasa albums that Brett created.  Please let us know if it doesn't work.  Thanks !  

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