Hiking & Backpacking

McCall is surrounded by a wide variety of hiking trails. Trail systems range from easy day hikes to difficult multiple day backpacking trips. Due to the breadth of hikes available we will highlight just a few.

Hiking Day Trips

Upper Hazard/Hard Creek Basin Trail #169

The Upper Hazard/Hard Creek Basin Trail is 4.2 miles long and located in the Hazard Lakes area.  It winds from Upper Hazard Basin past Hard Creek Lake to Upper Hazard Lake.  The Hidden Lake Loop Trail #511 makes a loop to the south into Hard Creek Basin.  The trail continues 2 miles down to Hazard Lake.  The trail ends near Hazard Campground.  This short section from the campground to Hazard Lake  climbs about 350′ through several meadows.  The area was burned in the 1994 Corral Fire.  The trail is open to the following uses:  Hiking, Horseback Riding, and Motorcycle Trail Riding.

Directions: Travel 5 miles northwest on Hwy 55 to Goose Lake/Brundage Road. Turn right and go 16 miles north on Goose Lake Road, past Goose Lake about 6 miles.  The trailhead is on the right, just before Hard Creek Guard Station.  The north end of the trail is located by Hazard Campground.

Josephine Lake Trail #296

The Josephine Lake Trail is 0.7 miles long. The trail winds along the mountainside past a small lake to the left.  Continue hiking over the next rise and you will see a beautiful 13 acre lake tucked into a granite cirque.  Elevation at the trailhead is 7280′ and the trail climbs 120′ to the lake.  The nearby drainage burned in the 1994 fires, but the surrounding area is still very scenic.  The trail is open for the following uses: Horseback Riding, Hiking

Directions:  To get to the trailhead, travel north from McCall on Warren Wagon Road past Upper Payette Lake.  Drive over the Secesh Summit, down about 3 miles.  Turn left on Forest Road 316. The gravel road winds up steeply for 3 miles to the trailhead, which is located past the end of the road.


McCall Idaho Hiking

A Hike Outside of New Meadows

Twenty Mile Trail #085

The Twenty Mile Trail is 18 miles north of McCall on Warren Wagon Road.  There is a wooden trailhead sign marked on the road.  A short dirt road to the right leads to the trailhead, which features a horse unloading ramp, hitching rails, and a toilet.  There is a large parking area with enough room to park trailers.  There is also a bulletin board with trail information located here.

This trail is an easy hike for the first three miles before the trail splits.  After that the trail to the right turns south for 10 miles and connects with the Duck Lake Trail #085. The left branch (North Lake/Twenty Mile Lakes Trail #315) climbs steeply for another 3 miles into the high lakes area.  Much of the area burned in the Blackwell and Corral wildfires of 1994 and the vegetation is regenerating nicely.  The trail is open for the following uses: Hiking, Mountain Biking, Horseback Riding, and Motorcycle Trail Riding.

Directions:  Travel north from McCall on Warren Wagon Road, past Upper Payette Lake.  The Twenty Mile Trailhead is two miles north of the Upper Payette Lake Campground entrance, on the right side of the road.  There is a short gravel road that leads to the trailhead.

Deep Creek Trail #336

The Deep Creek Trail connects Granite Lake (elev 6733′) with Upper Payette Lake Campgound (elev 5550′).  The hiking trail is 4.7 miles long.  The Cougar Creek Trail #114 branches north about 1 mile from Upper Payette Lake.  Starting from Granite Lake will give you a mostly downhill hike. The trail is open for the following uses: Hiking, Horseback Riding

From Upper Payette Lake Campground:
Travel north on Warren Wagon Road for 16 miles and turn off on Forest Road 495. The trailhead is located across from the developed campground entrance, and the trail can also be accessed across the road from the group camp sites.

From Granite Lake: Travel west from McCall on Hwy 55 and turn right at the Brundage Mountain/Goose Lake Road (257).  Follow the road past the Brundage Mountain Ski Resort and take the right fork before Brundage Reservoir onto Forest Road 281.  This road will turn into 451.  Take a right at the next fork onto Forest Road 446 and continue about 4 miles to Granite Lake.

To view a comprehensive list of hiking and backpacking trails visit the Payette National Forest website, or purchase The Hiker’s Guide to McCall & Cascade.

First time to McCall? Check out our Travel Info page for easy to follow directions.