Several years ago, My family and I visited McCall in January for winter break and a family gathering. We spent the bulk of our time at Brundage Mountain Resort skiing and having the best family trip ever. The skies were blue and the snow was powderific! Our kids were ripping it up and chasing their cousins all over the mountain. My husband and I actually looked at each other and wondered aloud “why don’t we live here?”
Soon enough we were back at our home in Anchorage, Alaska. We had both lived in Alaska well over a decade and loved everything about it’s remoteness and beauty. The only glitch was the lack of snow. Anchorage has been hit hard by the changing climate and something about McCall reminded us of what life used to be like when the ski resort and nordic trails near Anchorage were snow covered and at their best. On a lark, my husband started looking for work in McCall and within about 2 weeks we were plotting our move. We haven’t looked back since!
The most bizarre aspect of our move to McCall is that I had never been here in the summer. I honestly thought McCall was just a winter destination. I knew there was a lake, but I thought it was one of those frigid cold things like in the arctic. We were completely not prepared for our first summer and especially not for the 4th of July! McCall is really all about Payette Lake, boating and swimming. Skiing all winter then soaking up the sun and surf on Payette Lake all summer makes me feel like we’ve hit the jackpot.
McCall has been the perfect home to us over the past three years. Many of our friends and family tried to convince us that we would be better suited in Boise, “the big city”, which is about 2 hours away. The longer we’re here the more certain we are that we’ve made the right decision. McCall is like our own private Alaska in the middle of the lower 48. It has the small town life, the amazing sense of community and the abundant wilderness-style recreation that we loved about Anchorage, but with all the snow you would expect from a mountain town.
America’s Best Communities
That winter experience is one of the reasons that I truly loved being a part of this winter’s photo shoot for the McCall Area Chamber of Commerce. Photographing winter feels like getting back to my roots and the heart of why I fell in love with this town. It also makes me extremely proud that our town has made it into the top 15 semi-finalists in the America’s Best Communities competition. If you haven’t heard about it yet, you can learn more here: America’s Best Communities and you can find our community here: Valley County/Meadows Valley, ID. Stay tuned to find out if we make it into the final round!