Smiley Creek Lodge

Summer Jobs in the Sawtooth Mountains, Idaho

We're a small, busy, family owned lodge near the headwaters of the Salmon River and at the base of the Sawtooth mountains in central Idaho. We have a busy restaurant and ice cream counter, lodging, small store, gasoline pumps, and RV park.

Smiley Creek Lodge is located in the small community of Sawtooth City 37 miles north of Sun Valley/ Ketchum and 23 miles South of Stanley.  We are in an area of abundant outdoor activities surrounded by the WHite Cloud, Sawtooth and Smokey Mountains.

About Smiley Creek Lodge

Come spend the summer and early fall working in the beautiful Sawtooth Valley in central Idaho. Fabulous hiking, fishing, biking, boating, rafting and backpacking opportunities are right out our back door with more wilderness area available than anywhere in the lower 48.

We are looking for dynamic, motivated people to fill a variety of positions for our 2021 summer season. We believe in customer service, friendliness, cleanliness, teamwork, good food and good times!

The Employee Experience

The Sawtooth Valley is a great place to spend a summer or longer.  We encourage our crew to get outdoors and explore the lakes, the rivers, hiking, biking, fishing, and camping opportunities that surround us!  Your memories and friendships made will last a lifetime.

Ideal Candidate

We are looking for individuals who find a balance between working hard and playing hard in one of the country's most spectacular recreation areas. You would bring an exemplary work ethic with a positive attitude and just GET the hospitality industry, in turn providing great service to our guests in a sincere and friendly manner.  Our team is small and works together to do whatever it takes to get the job done. 

We foster a respectful environment where all are comfortable and committed to a team approach providing an excellent experience for both our team as well as guests. 

Winter positions available as well.

Room and Board

Housing is available and most rooms are private with shared baths and a few with a private bath that are available as well.   

We do have shared kitchens for your use in addition to your shift meal provided for you on the days that you work.  Housing is both on the property as well about a 15-minute drive from the lodge. 

If you have an RV, there are limited RV spaces available as well.    

Employee Perks

We offer our employees one meal per shift and half price on all other meals when not working.  We also offer discounts on store items as well as friends and family discounts for food and lodging. Other discounts are available in the area for outdoor adventures as well.   

Employees here enjoy the  hiking, backpacking, numerous hot springs and mountain biking opportunities that abound in the surrounding wilderness areas.  Also living in the only Dark Sky Preserve in the United States is a special experience. 

Getting Here and Getting Around

We are located at the headwaters of the Salmon River approximately 38 miles north of Ketchum Idaho and 25 miles south of Stanley Idaho. The closest airport is in Sun Valley and the closest major airport is in Boise. 

We are a remote location and having some form of transportation  (auto or bicycle) that will allow you to fully enjoy the area over the summer.  Transportation can be arranged from Boise to the Sun Valley/Ketchum area via Sun Valley Express ( You may also contact Sun Valley Shuttles  ( top arrange for transportation from Sun Valley/Ketchum to the Lodge.  

For Fun

Fabulous Hiking, Fishing, Biking, Boating and Backpacking opportunities right out our back door with over 300 alpine lakes, 40 peaks over 10,000 feet and over 500 miles of hiking trails in the SNRA as well as the Sawtooth Wilderness Area, Frank Church - River of no return Wilderness, Cecil D Andrus - White Clouds Wilderness  and the Hemmingway-Boulders wilderness area.  You will  leave here a different respect for the wilderness after your adventures.

How to Apply

Ready to have a summer with unlimited opportunities that will take you to new heights?

Please email your resume.

If you have any questions, please contact Mark Prince by phone or email.  We are looking forward to a great summer and to hearing from you!


While 2020 was a challenging season we are working hard to provide the safest environment possible for our guests and staff.  Smiley Creek is following CDC, state and local guidelines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  We are all in this together and are here to support each and answer any questions or concerns you may have. Please do not hesitate to ask about our protocal for COVID-19. The information liste below is subject to change depending on CDC, state, and local requirement as we progress through this Pandemic

What additional sanitation and safety measures will be in place at Smiley Creek Lodge? 

The safety of our guests and staff is our top priority.  We will be following all guidelines laid out by the CDC and Idaho South Central Department of Health to maintain the highest possible standards of cleanliness and sanitation.   

Measures currently in place

  • Employees will not be permitted to work if there are signs or symptoms consistent with infection, if you do not feel good please stay home 
  • Required use of face coverings for staff
  • Required use of face coverings for guests (per local mandates)
  • Reduction/removal of tables and chairs in dining/bar areas to increase distancing
  • Increased outdoor seating available  
  • Adjusted menus and food service practices to meet current and upcoming Idaho Covid -19  guidelines to provide a safe and friendly dining experience
  • Increased frequency of cleaning and disinfecting of all public surfaces
  • Installation of  hand sanitizer dispensers in public places
  • Additional signage in public spaces to ensure social distancing


During your interview we are happy to address any and all concerns and provide answers for you in order to  make you feel safe and welcome so you can enjoy your work environment as well as your overall summer experience in the Sawtooth Mountains.

We hope to see you soon!

Contact Smiley Creek Lodge