I’ve always preferred northern Idaho to southern Idaho. The forested mountains, abundance of lakes, rivers and hiking trails, and full four seasons leave little more to be desired. With this said, I have to admit how much I love visiting big cities. Seattle is my favorite, but we visit Boise a lot because my husband is a Boisian (Boiseite?).
When he first moved back down there for college in 2006 I made up my mind that anything and everyone associated with the southern half of the state was terrible. I hated Boise for the sheer fact that he was down there and I was still up north. His beloved blue and orange made me cringe and made my beautiful crimson and gray all the more desirable. Slowly but surely my PTSD associated with Boise has faded and I really enjoy visiting now. I love seeing his uncles and our (mostly his) friends. The weather is usually nicer and the shopping is fantastic. But mostly I love the drive.
The quick 7 ½ hour drive is beautiful and we always make a pit-stop in one of my favorite towns, McCall. Each time we stop we try a new place to eat, or take a walk somewhere we haven’t seen yet. The Payette Lake is stunning this time of year and unlike Coeur d’Alene, it actually has some sandy beaches.
This trip we stopped at a great place called Bistro 45, tucked away in a beautiful courtyard behind the McCall hotel. With a multitude of wine and craft beers, its cozy atmosphere was perfect for a chilly fall day. We ordered baked brie and a glass of red (delicious!) and chatted about our trip over a game of checkers. Bistro 45 is a great place to hang out, grab a bite and relax. We usually pick a new place each trip, but I kind of want to break tradition and go back next time.