Payette National Forest and Hells Canyon National Recreation Area

The Payette National Forest offers the visitor over 2.3 million acres to enjoy. Everything from the deep recesses of Hell's Canyon to peaks reaching elevations of almost 9,500 feet. Gateways to the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness lead the visitor to experience the solitude of seldom traveled trails.

Ponderosa State Park

All Season Fun and Recreation!

This Idaho state park has something for everyone. Beach access, boat launch, camp sites with amenities, hiking and biking trails, ranger guided nature walks, wildlife viewing and more. Payette Lake`s North Beach and interpretive area is part of this local Gem.

Ponderosa State Park covers most of a 1,000-acre peninsula that juts into beautiful Payette Lake near McCall. The scenic overlook at Osprey Point offers a spectacular view of the lake. The park offers hiking and biking trails, guided walks with park naturalists and evening campfire programs.

The North Beach Unit has a beach and picnic area. The topography ranges from arid sagebrush flats to dense forests. Wildlife that can be viewed at the park include Canada geese, osprey, bald eagles, wood ducks, mallards, songbirds, deer, moose, beaver, muskrats and even bear.

Winter activities include Nordic skiing on one of two USSA-certified cross-country courses.

Nature of the Area - The park?s namesake, the 150-foot-tall ponderosa pine, is the most noticeable species of tree. Douglas fir, grand fir, lodgepole pine and western larch also grow in the park. The character of the park is molded by its diverse topography. It ranges from arid sagebrush flats to forested lakeside trails; from even ground to steep cliffs; and from dense forest to spongy marsh.

The park is rich in wildflowers, especially along the interpretive trail that winds around the Meadow Marsh. Nature trails and gravel roads have been developed so visitors can enjoy opportunities to view

Location: East shore of Payette lake
Phone: 208-634-2164

Hells Canyon

Over ten miles wide and just under 8,000 ft. deep, Hells Canyon National Recreation Area is home to the deepest river gorge in North America which was carved the Snake River. Splitting the western Idaho and eastern Oregon borders, Hells Canyon is home to a diverse population of animals in abundant numbers. With little access for motor vehicles, you can drive to part of the canyon through Cambridge, Idaho and enjoy vast vistas that include the Snake River threading its way through the canyon.

Frank Church Wilderness

Created in 1980 by the US Congress and renamed for a US Senator, the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness covers 2.4 million acres of pristine, Idaho back country including acreage in six national forests and is comprised of rugged mountain terrain and white water along the middle and main forks of the Salmon River. McCall's Payette National Forest represents over 33% of the Frank Church Wilderness area.