Member Login

Cougar Island lot and home goes up for sale on tight timeframe


The saga of Cougar Island in Payette Lake near McCall continues. Just weeks after an auction for land on the island concluded, the lone home on Cougar is again listed for sale.

Jim Laski of Bellevue, Idaho, was the only bidder for land on the island at auction earlier this month – snapping up state endowment land under a home he owns on the island.

Laski leased the land from the Idaho Department of Lands endowment, but owned the structure – the house. The state has been working to auction off the so-called cottage sites around Payette Lake in recent years under a process called Voluntary Auction for Ownership. Laski asked the state to put his cottage site on the block, which opened up the opportunity to unite the land and house under one owner.

The state moved not just to auction Laski’s cottage site but the entire island. No other bidders emerged for Laski’s 2.52-acre cottage site or the other lots on the island. Laski won with a bid of $2,052,000 – the appraised value for the land.

Now, the Laski property is listed for sale – land, and home together. The listing asks for $3,777,750, or $1,725,750 more than the land auction bid, but unlike the auction – it includes the home.

The catch?

Cougar Island home site. Via Intermountain MLS

But there’s a catch.

A deal has to close by mid-November, according to the listing. That lines up with the need to close on the land auction. Idaho Department of Lands spokesperson Sharla Arledge told us Laski has 30-60 days to close, with the chance of a 30-day extension. That puts close on the land at roughly November 14th, depending on that 30-day extension possibility.

If the Laski land purchase with the State of Idaho does not close, the state will retain ownership of the site.

The two-story cabin itself is 2,344 square feet, with a large wrap-around porch facing Payette Lake.

“Completely off the grid, this self-sufficient residence was built to stand the test of time,” the listing says. ” rescent-shaped beach area, dock, storage shed, solar power system with back up propane generator… Stone exterior with complete wrap-around porch, metal roof. Incredible craftsmanship inside, oak and walnut flooring, cherry cabinetry and ceramic tile. Casement windows open to lake, mountain and wooded views.”

The property is only accessible by boat (or if the ice is very sold, perhaps walking or snowmobiling at the height of winter by intrepid souls), meaning it’s not generally inhabitable during the winter.

The fate of the rest of the island is up in the air. I L says it could look at a future trade or auction for the rest of the property.

Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

Start your day with all the local info you need.

Unsubscribe any time
Related stories