camas lilites on bear basin grand traverse loop

Five Hikes Near MccAll

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McCall is a ski town located two hours North of Boise. Surrounded by national forest, it also offers many outdoor activities in the summer, including hiking. Below is a short list of hikes near McCall.

Payette Lake Peninsula Trail (Easy)

Payette Lake Peninsula Trail is located in the Ponderosa State Park.  There are many trails to choose from in this park, so you aren’t limited to this developed path.  It just so happens that this hike near McCall offers the best views of the lake, though limited as it passes through the pine forest.  Since much of it follows a paved path, I consider this hike more like a walk in the park, but it will appeal to the typical tourist.  For more details, visit my post, Ponderosa State Park.

peninsula trail hike near mccall

Bear Basin Grand Traverse (Easy)

The Bear Basin Nordic Center is not only popular in the winter, but also in the summer.  Its network of trails attracts many mountain bikers and hikers.  Again, there are many trails from which to choose.  This 4.8 mile hike near McCall weaves through intermittent forest and meadows.  At the end of May it features fantastic wildflowers and nice views. For more details, visit my post Happy Hiking: Bear Basin.

bear basin grand traverse loop

Goose Creek Falls (Moderate)

There are a few ways to reach Goose Creek Falls.  The route I am referencing is the 3-mile hike on AllTrails.  Goose Creek Falls is located in the Payette National Forest and is just a 15-minute drive from town.  As the name suggests, the trail features a waterfall.

Due to its short distance, I would normally rank this hike near McCall as easy, but the path descends through the forest at the beginning, which leaves the long, steep uphill for the end. Additionally, it is popular among tourists, so I caution visitors to save your energy!

For more seasoned hikers, it is easy to extend the hike much further too.  Consider adding on Brundage Reservoir for an additional four miles. For more details, visit my post Happy Hiking: Goose Creek Falls.

goose creek falls hike near mccall

Boulder Lake (Moderate)

Boulder Lake is also located in the Payette National Forest, though it is 30-minutes east of town on a long dirt road.  The hike begins at the Boulder Meadows Reservoir and climbs through the forest along the creek to Boulder Lake, also a reservoir.  This popular, 4-mile moderate hike near McCall may be extended to a 6.9-mile loop including Louie Lake.  It is best to wait at least until June to complete this one. For more details, visit my post Happy Hiking: Boulder Lake.

boulder lake hike near mccall

Hazard Creek Trail (Moderate)

Hazard Creek Trail is a bit further from McCall than the aforementioned choices, but it is worth the drive despite limited parking and no toilets.  The 6-mile moderate hike begins on a forest road lined with a variety of wildflowers. 

Eventually, the path narrows to a single track that climbs through the forest to the first waterfall, Hyatt Falls, located slightly off the trail around the 2-mile mark.  Hazard Falls and a lovely view can be found at the third mile.

me and annie at hyatt falls

In my opinion, this is the best of the hikes near McCall that I have listed, but it is also the most remote.  For more details, visit my post Happy Hiking: Hazard Creek Trail.  ETB

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Beth Bankhead

Former public finance professional turned award winning travel blogger and photographer sharing the earth's beauty one word and image at a time.

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