SHAWNEE STATE PARK
Shawnee State Park is 3,983 acres of Pennsylvania?s scenic Ridge and Valley Province. Ten miles west of historic Bedford along US 30, Shawnee has fine recreational facilities that are convenient and fit into the natural environment. A focal point of the park is the 451-acre Shawnee Lake.
Shawnee State Park is named for American Indians who lived for a short time in the vicinity of the park during their westward migration from the Potomac in the early 1700s.
General Forbes camped his army within the boundaries of the park while building the Forbes Road in the campaign of 1758 against the French at Fort Duquesne, Pittsburgh. One can still walk remnants of the Forbes Trail within the park.
The white barn, buildings and houses now surrounded by a lake of water were once surrounded by a sea of grass. These buildings belonged to John Bowman?s ?Water Brooks Farm.? John Bowman was president and chancellor of the University of Pittsburgh and was the driving force behind the building of the Cathedral of Learning.
Camping: modern sites, some with electric
The 293 sites have picnic tables and fire rings, and accommodate either tents or trailers. 65 sites have electric hookups. Two campsites are ADA accessible. There is a sanitary dump station and centrally located washhouses with flush toilets, showers and laundry tubs. A camp store sells wood, charcoal and other camping supplies and is open from Memorial Day Weekend to Labor Day. The camping season begins the second Friday in April and ends in late December.
Organized Group Tenting:
An 80-person capacity rustic tenting area with composting toilets and a hand-pumped well is available April through December for organized youth and adult groups. Advance reservations are required.
Centrally located on an island in the middle of the park, this three-story house offers year-round accommodations with panoramic views of Shawnee Lake and the surrounding countryside. The lodge is ADA accessible and has a modern eat-in-kitchen, one bathroom, living room, sitting room, four bedrooms that sleep eight, porch and yard with firering and picnic table.
The sand and turf beach has modern bathhouses with flush toilets and showers. The beach is open from late-May to mid-September, 8 a.m. to sunset. Lifeguards are on duty from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day, unless otherwise posted. Please read and follow posted rules for swimming when lifeguards are off-duty.
Boating: electric motors only
The 451-acre Shawnee Lake has three boat launch areas and 183 boat mooring spaces. A boat dock is ADA accessible. The boat concession rents paddleboats, canoes and rowboats during the summer.
Motorboats must display a boat registration from any state. Non-powered boats must display one of the following: boat registration from any state; launching permit or mooring permit from Pennsylvania State Parks that are available at most state park offices; launch use permit from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission.