I'm road trippin it this week, and Elkins Resort on Priest Lake in northern Idaho has been one of our stops. I love going to employers' places, laying low for the first day, not letting anyone know who I am. This way I can check out the vibe on the down low. ;} Shhhh, don't tell. I do this for you guys.
I came away from Elkins thinking - what a great place to spend the summer.
First off - it's beautiful. Sits right on the shore of Priest Lake so there's beach time and boat time to be had. There are also hundreds of miles of trails in the area - hiking and mountain biking. And apparently there's some really good climbing - the peaks are granite.
Elkins has a lodge with a dining room and a bar, a small store, and individual cabins spread out through the woods. And it IS in the woods - so you'd have to be the sort of person that likes living in the trees - well, you know, not up IN the trees, but under them.
My take is you'd want your car here so you can explore the surrounding area and take advantage of all that hiking and climbing. And this place is fairly isolated, so if you're a nightlife person, this probably wouldn't be the best choice for you. How I see it, you're friends would be the other staff, and you'd end up getting tight with them. I'm guessing there are a lot of nightly campfires on the beach. Bonus: you can do road trips into British Columbia on your days off - about 2 hours or so to Nelson, VERY cool town. Don't forget your passport.
They have wireless in the lodge/bar area, so you'd be set to bring your laptop. Also there was good Verizon cell coverage - don't know about the other carriers.
Everyone was really nice - the staff as well as the folks running the lodge. And everyone is mellow. It def. had that laid back mountain atmosphere. Granted I was here in September so not their high season. Most of the guests were retirees. The place jams in the summertime with families because of the beach and the cabins with full kitchens. Plus, guests are allowed to have their dogs, so the whole family can come.
Summing up - If you're looking for a true mountain experience where you can hike, mountain bike, and climb, AND where you can chill on a beach and swim, this is a place you should check for next summer. They're always looking for more Seasonal Professional folks who can work their long season - starting end of April through October.