The Elk River Crew
Gil is a native of Northern Virginia and first
visited Pocahontas County in the fall 1977.
Thinking that he would stay only for the winter
he soon realized what a truly special place the
region is. Gil started his business under the
name the Willis’s farm which catered to skiers
who needed lodging in 1980. He soon added Nordic
skiing trails and services which the resort had
discontinued. After finding his wife Mary they
went year round in 1985 with a focus on mountain
biking. In 1988 they built the Inn & Restaurant
and have never looked back. Gil & Mary are
recreational pioneers in the eastern US for over
30 years. From teaching skiing, fly fishing,
cycling, snowboarding Gil continues to push the
envelope and enjoy what originally landed him in
West Virginia. He and his wife Mary have two sons Gus & Thurston
who also enjoy his outdoor adventure
Mary's love for the outdoors and natural
affinity for healthy minds and bodies has helped
her to provide common sense advice & sustenance
for the many guests that visit Elk River Touring
Center. She acts as part time guide, innkeeper
and restaurateur. The Restaurant at Elk River is
nationally acclaimed as one of the best food
establishments in the state and surrounding
region. Mary is a self taught chef whose entrees
are made from the freshest local ingredients
when available. Desserts are her personal
favorite which can complement a wonderful meal.
She continues to make the Elk River experience
one that is warm and inviting.
Chef David Carte is a native West Virginian who was raised near the New River and spent many of his childhood summers along the Greenbrier River in Pocahontas County. He has completed studies in culinary arts and nutrition at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. After working in top restaurants in Charlotte, NC for several years, Dave has come back to the mountains of his beloved state to share his talent and enthusiasm for great food with visitors and fellow mountaineers.
Photo: West Virginia Executive/Tracy Toler
Ernie is the director of TLC and proud
of it. She is a seasoned Pocahontas County local
who grew up here in Pleasant valley. She knows a
little bit about everything and everyone. Her
local folklore has been passed down to her from
grandparents and treasured relatives. You’ll
meet Ernie at breakfast and she’ll get your
coffee cup filled and tummy packed.
Ski & mountain bike tech, ski instructor, mountain guide, all around trails and fixit guru. Greg is a native West Virginian who tries to spend all his work and free time in the outdoors. He is a former pro mountain bike racer with several top finishes in state and nationally from 1995-2005. A true mountain man with a easy going disposition. He'll lead you around in the woods and be sure to get you home safe.
The friendly voice on the other end of the phone, helping you to make your plans. Julie is a native of Florida who decided to head for the WV hills with her husband Steve in 2009. The Royers have an extensive background in outdoor recreation and instruction. Julie loves the outdoor life and the simple, high quality of life that West Virginia offers.
If you would like more information, please call us at 304-572-3771 or 866-572-3771, e-mail us, or use our online request form.