A classic mountain lake nestled deep in the Willamette National Forest, Elk Lake is significantly sized to accommodate many human-powered and electric motor vessels. Boaters can enjoy calm waters with scenic views of nearby Battle Ax Mountain and Mount Beachie to the west.
There is a single basic gravel boat ramp at the west end of the lake in the middle of the 17-site campground. Several vaulted toilets can be found in the campground, and there is no potable water source. There are also several non-designated, free campsites at the east end of the lake.