Shawnee Mountain Ski Getaways

ski getaways

Shawnee Ski Mountain is closer to metropolitan New York and New Jersey than any other major Pennsylvania ski area. And since folks from the greater metro area have been heading to the Poconos for years in the summer and fall, it's not surprising that quite a few of them find their way to Shawnee in the winter.

Shawnee is perennially among the first in the Poconos to open, usually in time for the increasingly important Thanksgiving weekend. A powerful snowmaking system, recently upgraded to include 450 tower-mounted guns and almost fully automated, covers all slopes, trails, the terrain park and half pipe. Just about everything on the map is lit for night skiing and riding, including the pipe and park.

Shawnee has 23 slopes and trails on a 700-foot vertical drop. There is a half pipe and an entire 3000-foot trail terrain park. A Pipe Dragon grooming attachment keeps the half pipe in shape. The uphill lift capacity is 12,600 riders and hour, and with most lifts going to the top of the summit ridge it's easy enough to find one with a short line. Fully half of Shawnee's terrain is rated intermediate, with beginners and advanced skiers and riders splitting the remainder.