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McCall lies at the head of Long Valley and is one of Idaho’s premier resort and recreation areas. The town was founded in 1899 when Thomas McCall and his family became enamored with the area upon camping on Lake Payette’s shore. Instead of continuing west with the rest of their wagon train companions, the family stayed behind and purchased the east side of town from homesteader, Sam Devers. McCall then platted the town in 1901, and a post office was established that same year. When the Union Pacific Railroad came through, the settlement was renamed Lakeport. However, residents objected and changed it to McCall in honor of the town’s founding father.

For nearly eighty years, lumber was manufactured along Payette Lake. However, the lumber industry went belly-up here after a series of sawmill fires, and the last mill closed in 1977. Since then, McCall has relied on its ideal recreational location to draw tourists year-round. During winter, residents and visitors are treated to an average of 151 inches of snow (the most in the state) perfect for skiing and snowboarding, while summer brings lake recreation, hiking, and mountain biking.

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