Burgdorf Hot Springs – A Tranquil Backcountry Soak In Warm, Old West Simplicity

Established in 1865, Burgdorf Hot Springs is a simple, “Old West” style resort nestled between the stunning mountains of the Payette National Forest, for 6 months of the year exclusively accessible by snowmobile. With a neighboring meadow that sometimes fills with grazing elk, Burgdorf offers a true escape from the daily grind in breathtaking, untouched Idaho nature.

What To Expect

Burgdorf offers hot-springers three clean, well-maintained, chest-deep log-sided pools with gravel bottoms, the smaller of which are undercover and are a steaming 118°F, while the large, open air 50′ by 85′ swimming pool averages 100-115°F. There is a shallow area partitioned off from the main pool for the littlest hot-springers and those with limited movement to enjoy. There is no suit or towel rental, so don’t forget to pack your own!

Everything here is rustic (including the cell service), and most of the buildings on the property are maintained originals dating back to the late 1800s, with solar power being the only modern touch, supplying energy to the office. A visit (by day or to stay, either way prior reservation is required) really takes you back in time.

Address404 French Creek, Ste 246, McCall, Idaho
LocationNear McCall, Idaho, past Payette Lake
Open10am – 6pm
Road AccessEasy. All vehicles (winter – by snowmobile only)
Water Temperature100 – 118°F
Admission$15 – $20/day, soaking included in the price of an overnight stay

Don’t go there expecting luxury or even 4-star comfort. This is a back-to-basics, wonderfully historic soak in true nature and should be appreciated as such, with friendly staff on hand to help, whether it’s to get your wood stove going or to answer any questions you have about the resort or local area.

Day soaks are available in two-hour blocks at 10am, 12pm, 2pm, and 4pm.

Clothing is required.

A sheltered soak overlooking the main pool. Photo by Jackie S

NOTE: There is a lot of negative feedback online dating back to when the owners opted to open the resort to vaccinated guests only. This policy has since been revoked – no proof of Covid vaccination will be asked for, and the pool is open to both day users and overnight stays with a prior reservation (up to 90 days in advance), whether they got a jab or not!

There are two open-style changing rooms for men and women near the pool, with heated floors, hooks, shelves and lockers without locks (small community trust is the vibe they are looking for here, but you are of course welcome to bring your own lock!), and nearby outhouses.

There’s also a brilliant creekside clawfoot tub with water pouring out from the underground source.

The creekside tub…for however many you can fit in! Source: Jackie S.

Hungry? The office area offers a simple choice of soda, water, candy, hot chocolate, coffee, tea, burritos and muffins, as well as limited flavors of pizza for cabin guests from Hometown Pizza in McCall (office hours 10am-6pm). You are encouraged to bring your own food and drinks (alcohol too- but only for in-cabin drinking) but not in glass containers – see the Can I Stay There? section for more on cooking. The next nearest food stops are Secesh Stage Stop (6 miles from Burgdorf) and Baum Shelter Too (17 miles from Burgdorf). You need to pack out all the trash you pack in as there are no municipal waste collection services at this remote resort. Fresh, drinkable spring water is available on tap near the office.

Burgdorf management asks that you leave your pets at home.

Pull up a seat in the area near the office, or take a break from soaking to sit and chat around the firepit, poolside.

On occasion, they have been known to host live music events, too!

The big pool and view. Photo by Michelle B.

Day-Use Admission

Prices may be subject to change. Reservations must be made in advance via Burgdorf’s official webpage.

Adults (16+)$20/person
Children (under 16s) and Seniors$15/person

Interesting History

A sign at the historic Burgdorf Hot Springs. Photo by Caputocj

One of Idaho’s oldest resorts, Burgdorf Hot Springs was established in 1865 by young German immigrant Fred C. Burgdorf, who was mining in nearby Warren when he heard about the hot springs from Chinese miners. The hot springs had been revered for centuries before that by the Native Americans. By 1870, Burgdorf had turned the springs into a resort, which he named “Resort,” with a hotel, cabins and a barn for the cattle whose milk and meat he sold to the miners in Warren. The resort was then refurbished and expanded in 1902 by Burgdorf and his wife, a singer from Denver named Janette Foronsard, and renamed “Burgdorf.” Janette died in 1923, and Burgdorf sold his interest to James Harris and moved away. The hot springs have been run by the Harris family ever since, who constantly seek to “reclaim, preserve and improve the timeless historic, peaceful atmosphere enjoyed by those who truly appreciate Burgdorf.”

In 1972, the community of Burgdorf was added as a historic district to the National Register of Historic Places.

Basketball coach George Karl was once a part owner of Burgdorf.

How To Get There

From Boise, it will take just over 3 hours to drive the 139 miles. Take the ID-55N 108 miles to McCall. Turn right directly after Payette Lake onto Warren Wagon Road. From McCall it’s then a 50-minute, 31-mile beautiful, scenic drive to the Burgdorf Hot Springs along the shores of the lake and then into the hills.

NOTE: Make sure your car is fully fueled. The nearest gas stops are Secesh Stage Stop (6 miles from Burgdorf) and Baum Shelter Too (17 miles from Burgdorf). 

ANOTHER NOTE: From late fall to spring the Warren Wagon road is shut due to snow, and the hot springs are only accessible by snowmobile. The resort’s website lists local snowmobile companies you can hire from at the bottom of its Prepare page.

Can I Stay There?

The First Cabin. Photo by Christy B

Yes – but there is a 2 night minimum policy! Burgdorf offers 12 rustic, wooden interior log cabins from $150 to $300/night, all simple and maintaining their original style and warm, authentic charm. None of the cabins has running water or electricity – consider it “camping inside a cabin,” though each has its own outhouse with toilet paper provided (though we advise you to bring your own too!) The smaller cabins have one double bed and sleep two people, while the largest cabins sleep up to ten.

All cabins have wood stoves with plenty of firewood on the porch, beds, a table and chairs, and wonderful forest/hillside views. 

Guests must bring:

  • Their own bedding (sub-0° recommended for wintertime) for the twin/queen sized beds (each bed has a mattress, mattress cover and clean sheet, but no other bedding or pillows);
  • Cookware, dishes, utensils and a wash basin to wash your dishes in.
  • You can bring your own propane camp stoves but no charcoal stoves or campfire cooking (a fire danger in the wooded area!). You can also heat your pans on the top of the wood stoves indoors.
  • Battery-powered lanterns and flashlights (there is rechargeable battery lighting in the cabins, but you’ll need your own for walking around the site).
  • Bottles and/or jugs to refill for your swim and cabin needs (cold, fresh spring water on tap near the office).

Check in: 3pm (call if you plan to arrive after 5:30pm).

Check out: 11am.

All overnight cabin guests have 24/7 access to the hot springs pools.

Check out the cabins and book on the official Burgdorf page.

The open-air and covered pools, with a backdrop of Payette Forest. Photo by TJMcHugh

What Else Can I Do In The Area?

In winter, try snowshoeing, cross country skiing, or other winter activities. In spring/summer/fall, go hiking, biking or wildlife spotting in the Payette National Forest. Ask the Burgdorf staff for tips.

Enjoy the 1,000-acre peninsula jutting into Payette Lake, offering hiking and cycling trails, picnic areas, swimming, wildlife spotting, volleyball, and horseshoes courts. 

Kayak, paddle board or canoe the Upper North Fork of the Payette River.

Go on a sunset lake cruise from McCall.

The Takeaway

If you’re looking for a remote, well-maintained, rustic soak in the lap of nature, Burgdorf is the place for you. Brilliant in both summer, for the forest hiking opportunities, and winter, when you can only get there by snowmobile, Burgdorf makes an ideal break from the daily grind. Why not make a vacation of it and combine it with a trip that explores some of Idaho’s other hot springs?

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Burgdorf Hot Springs?

Burgdorf Hot Springs is a 50-minute, 31-mile drive north of McCall, Idaho, in the Payette National Forest.

How to get to Burgdorf Hot Springs?

From Boise, take the ID-55 N 108 miles to McCall. Turn right directly after Payette Lake onto Warren Wagon Road. Drive 31 miles into the Payette National Forest. Note that in winter, Burgdorf Hot Springs is only accessible by snowmobile from McCall.

How accessible is Burgdorf Hot Springs road?

In summer, it is easy to drive on the Warren Wagon Road to get to Burgdorf Hot Springs. In winter, the road is closed to wheeled vehicles and is groomed up to five times a week for snowmobile access. Check the Burgdorf Hot Springs webpage for the latest conditions/closures.


While we at Traxplorio do our very best to give you the latest information about these hot springs sites, life happens, weather happens, and property owners happen. We always recommend you go to the official hot springs’ web page and/or the relevant state authority page to check conditions, times, and prices (where relevant) before you head out. Thanks for understanding, and enjoy your soak!

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