Mother Nature, along with Typhoon Songda, seems determined to deprive me of living the lines to my favorite poem, Helen Hunt Jackson’s “October’s Bright Blue Weather.” “Oh suns and skies and clouds of June and all ye flowers together, you cannot rival for one hour, October’s Bright Blue Weather.” Though they may be able to deprive me of my October blue skies, they cannot rob me of my favorite season of the year, Fall.
Our drive down the Payette River Scenic Byway takes us through McCall, a tiny all-season resort town on the southerly shores of Payette Lake. Friend and blog follower, “Tom the Awning Fixer” described McCall as “Idaho’s version of Lake Tahoe.” Known for its year-round outdoor recreational activities, McCall is a cool respite from the summer heat with its mile-high elevation. Winter brings one of the greatest snowfalls in the area, attracting Nordic skiers, snowshoers, and tourists drawn to the annual Winter Carnival. But no one seems to be around McCall in the Fall…
There are numerous Forest Service Campgrounds near McCall, Idaho, all of them decorated with the same signage, “Closed for the Season.” After several straight days of misting rain and overcast skies in remote boondock locations, our solar panels are as thirsty as we are. Ponderosa State Park seems to be the only game in town, so we head straight there, plug in our power cords, and head right back out in search of libations. Funny, we both spotted the same Salmon River Brewery on our way into the park. It runs in the family. 😉
Ponderosa State Park, located right on the bank of Payette Lake, has to be the nicest State Park I have ever visited. I am impressed by the spacious, level sites, the helpful Visitor Center staff, and the elaborate trail system leading right outside my door. Of course, this comes at a price, but it’s well worth it to have hook-ups as we ride out the rain from Typhoon Songda. This is the first park I have ever seen with “companion sites.” There are two posts in the same parking area, which saves us about $10 per night. We are two out of four rigs in the entire park, so sharing “one common wall” is not so bad.
The hiking trails are deserted throughout the 1,000 acre peninsula which juts out into Payette Lake. Granted, rain is in the forecast, but still, it seems odd to have this massive playground all to myself. Being only 100 miles from Boise, I can only imagine the crowds that must flock to this beautiful lake during the summer months.
As followers of this blog know, my brother Don is a fabulous cook, and he enjoys it. I am a decent cook, but I don’t enjoy it. I have lived full time in the Winnie for 3.5 years now, and never once used the convection oven. But Don got a little carried away back at the “Rest Awhile Fruit Stand,” and if we don’t get rid of some of the apples he purchased, fruit flies are going to carry his Navion away! So what better time or way to experiment than with a Fresh Apple Pie!
I have to say, the convection oven did a better job at baking the pie than a traditional oven. The hot air seemed to “lift” the pie crust, making it more flaky and tender. It took about five minutes longer, but it browned evenly and cooked through and through. I love Don’s fiery homemade chili, so I made him a deal…“You make the chili, and I’ll bake the pie!” A great way to spend a rainy afternoon enjoying Fall in McCall!
And just in case you were wondering, yes, I walked off the pie…