Pennsylvania is an excellent are to find state parks at. Shawnee State Park, which is located on 3,983 acres of The Ridge and Valley Province of PA, is one of them. This national state park is found just 10 miles west of the historic town of Bedford, PA, and can be easily accessed from both the Pennsylvania Turnpike or State Route 30.
The main focal point of Shawnee Lake is the lake itself. With 451 acres of beautiful clear water, Shawnee Lake attracts swimmers, boaters, fisherman and sunbathers alike. The lake is open during the summer season with posted lifeguards in certain areas, and the swimming area is free. The beach area includes a large area of sandy beach, with both sunny spots and shady areas. Swimming in the lake is allowed during normal summer hours, and any type of flotation devices are also permitted. Located at the main swimming area is a concession stand offering hot and cold foods, as well as an assortment of beverages and ice cream. Hours for the beach are 11 a.m to 7 p.m., running from the first Saturday after Memorial Day through Labor Day. Just a slight ways down from the beach area are volleyball nets set up for anyone to play on a first come, first served basis.
Campers also love to come camping at Shawnee Lake. With 293 sites available, everyone can have a spot to set up at. The campgrounds in the park are equipped with picnic tables, modern and clean bathrooms with showers, fire pits and garbage disposal. The campground is able to accommodate trailers, campers and tents. If you need electric hook-ups, 50 sites are available for you to choose from. The second Friday in April begins the camping season and runs through mid-December. Available on -site is a camping store that sells all the amenities that are needed for camping, such as firewood, charcoal, snacks, lighters, camping gear, food and more. Available at Shawnee Lake are also three cottages with electric heat, bathroom, fire pit, picnic table and more. Call for more information and to make a reservation for cottages on site.
Shawnee Park is an excellent area to take out a boat. Visitors to the area can rent canoes, a paddle boat or a rowboat to take out onto the lake, on a first-come, first served basis. Also permitted on the water are personal boats, with 3 separate boat launching areas. Motorboats must show a boat registration from the state they are licensed in. A launching permit or state park mooring permit is required for any non-powered boat on the water. Fishing is also a huge draw for those who wish to visit the lake, as the lake is stocked every year with a multitude of warm water game fish. All PA Fish and Boat Commission laws apply. Many common fish are stocked, such as bluegill, sucker, catfish, crappie, largemouth bass, northern pike, carp and bullhead. For hikers and nature lovers, a 16-mile scenic trail system is offered, as well as 7.5 miles of biking trails. Hunting is allowed on the land as well, over 3,000 acres. Hunters can hunt for deer, squirrel, grouse, woodchuck and rabbit. All PA Game Commission rules and regulations apply to hunters in the area. Disc golf is another available activity, with a 9-hole, par-3 course offering a nice challenge to golfers.
Shawnee Lake also offers visitors the chance to take advantage of the beauty of the park in the winter. Snowmobiling, skiing, sled riding, ice skating and ice boating are available during the winter hours. A winter report is available online from the website for additional information on current snow and ice depths.
For more information on this beautiful State park, visit the website at Shawnee State Park
You may also call 1-888-PA-PARKS for reservations and additional information. Shawnee State Park is located at: 132 State Park Road, Schellsburg, PA 15559, and can be reached directly at 1-814-733-4218.