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Shawnee Peak at Pleasant Mountain

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Shawnee Peak at Pleasant Mountain

Maine’s Oldest Continuously Operated Ski Area

by David Irons

     In the early thirties Portland skiers would drive to Mount Washington to ski. Driving Rte. 302 through Bridgton they were looking for a place closer to home and spotted the open lower slopes of Pleasant Mountain as they drove over the causeway across Moose Pond. Veteran ski writer Dave Irons tells the story of how they approached Harry Douglas, the farmer who owned the property to get permission to ski those slopes. His answer was, “Sure, as long as you replace the fences in the spring when I put my cows out”.

     After a season or two of climbing those slopes, a rope tow was installed and In January of 1938 Pleasant Mountain opened for business. Irons traces the story of how this modest beginning eventually reached the top of the mountain, and through a series of owners became one of Maine’s busiest ski areas. In the eighties a Pennsylvania group bought the area and changed the name to Shawnee Peak. They installed lights and today it is the largest night skiing operation in New England. Under current owner Chet Home who bought the area in 1994 Shawnee Peak has expanded and the future is bright. Shawnee Peak at Pleasant Mountain is the story of 80 years of skiing.

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