Shore Lodge in McCall, Idaho, is situated on the south end of Payette Lake. This glacier-fed lake of 5,330 acres is surrounded by snow capped mountains blanketed with dense forest pines that makes for a picture perfect postcard. The log-built lodge blends in well with the poetic scenery that surrounds it. Everything about this scenario tells me that this weekend is going to be relaxing.
We arrive mid-afternoon and finish our check in. The view of the lake and its picturesque background from the reception desk makes me wonder why I didn’t book more days. The staff informs us that the lodge is hosting its own version of Iron Chef this weekend and lets us know that the event is open to the public. That, however, is a story for another day.
We settle into our room and begin our tour of this magnificent lodge. The lobby’s décor is warm and inviting with its leather chairs and stone fireplace. The dinning area’s floor to ceiling views are five-star quality with a menu to match. The mountainous setting could play host to any special occasion, family gathering or romantic evening.
The lodge has a workout room and a private theater with complimentary popcorn. The Cove, an onsite spa, offers many packages that include facials, massages, pools and fitness services. There are plenty of additional amenities to enjoy.
Shore Lodge offers outdoor activities throughout the year. In the summer months visitors can relax on the beach and enjoy the sun or participate in water activities such as paddle boarding, kayaking and canoeing. There are also boat docks for those who like to spend a day on the lake fishing, exploring or just taking in the beautiful landscape surrounding the lake’s deep blue waters.
The winter months often require a little more clothing, unless you decide to take a dip in the heated pool (pictured, left) or relax in the hot tub. The lodge supplies towels and a warm robe that can be worn to and from the pool. I sit in the hot tub and gaze out at the gorgeous horizon (pictured, above right) and think to myself, can life get any better than this?
After the sun sets and the night’s chill sets in, it is time to bundle up and relax by a campfire. The lodge has a fire pit on the northwest end of the beach. There is a small stone shelf with packets of graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey bars, the ingredients needed to concoct the outdoor cuisine known as s’mores, enjoyed by adults and kids alike.
The sleepy little mountain town of McCall has a lot to offer the multi-season tourist. The view of Payette Lake breaks just over the horizon as we travel north into town on 3rd Street. The town has the traditional features and ambiance of a true mountain community.
It’s easy for McCall to let the holiday spirit linger on throughout spring. With snow common through the end of May, warm clothing is recommended when going out for a day of exploring or an evening for food and beverage.
Not having spent time in a region that has seasons in a while, I have to say that the experience has been a good one. Lounging in an outdoor hot tub or making s’mores over an open fire with snow flurries raining down on my head gave me a calm and subtle feeling.
Author: Anthony Scopel
Photography: Anthony & Maureen Scopel
Editor: Sheri L. Thompson
Published By: YMATD