Pocono meaning the Stream Between Two Mountains The Pocono Mountains region is home to rolling mountain terrain, breathtakingly beautiful waterfalls, thriving woodlands and 170 miles of winding rivers With 2,400 square miles northeast Pennsylvania's Carbon, Monroe, Pike and Wayne counties. Winters attractions ski, snowboard, snow tube and snowshoe through snowy winter wonderlands encompassing over 163 ski trails, Summers attractions of 261 miles of hiking and biking trails, over 35 golf courses, whitewater rafting, boating, fishing and open access to nine state and two national parks.
The Pocono Mountains of northeast Pennsylvania is divided into five regions: Upper Delaware River Region, Lake Region, Delaware River Region, Mountain Region and Lehigh River Gorge Region. Upper Delaware River Region - Pike & Wayne Counties Lake Region - Pike & Wayne Counties Delaware River Region - Monroe & Pike Counties Mountain Region - Monroe County Lehigh River Gorge Region - Carbon County
The Pocono Mountains were inhabited by the Delaware, Iroquois, Shawnee, Minisink, Lenape and Paupack Indians. In 1659, the Dutch established settlements near the famous Delaware Water Gap, but were forced to leave by the English in 1664. By 1742, English and German settlers were arriving in the Pocono Mountains and the first permanent residence was established by Nicholas Depui in 1725 at Shawnee.
The Poconos are a series of flat-topped mountains that reach 1,400 to 1,800 feet in elevation. They trend southwest to northeast and link up with the Catskill Mountains to the northeast. Hard sandstone and conglomerates in the Poconos have resisted erosion and thus kept the mountains raised above the surrounding lowlands, forming a heavily forested plateau that is flat to hilly in character. The plateau's southern and eastern edge drops abruptly to the lowlands and is specifically known as the Pocono Mountains. This escarpment, with its relatively cool climate and the scenic beauty of its forests, lakes, and streams, has long been the site of many resort facilities for tourists in both summer and winter.
The Pocono Mountains region is also a place for soft adventure activities such as hiking, biking, fishing, canoeing and whitewater rafting. With nine state parks, the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River and Steamtown National Historic Site, the Pocono Mountains offer a wide spectrum of outdoor recreation opportunities.
The Poconos is home to several camp sites. Camp Minsi, owned by the Boy Scouts' Minsi Trails Council, is centrally located in the Poconos on a property of 1,200 acres in Pocono Summit. Camp Mosey Wood, owned by the Girl Scouts' Eastern Pennsylvania council, is located on a property of 425 acres in White Haven, PA. Other Scout camps located on the edges of the Poconos include Goose Pond Scout Reservation , Resica Falls Scout Reservation, and Trexler Scout Reservation. The Poconos is also home to several Jewish summer camps - including Camp Massad, Camp Poyntelle, and Camp Ramah. Other non-denominational season summer camps include Camp Lindenmere, Camp Lohikan, Camp Pocono Ridge, Camp Setebaid , Tyler Hill Camp, Camp Watonka, and Camp Westmont.
Ski resorts in and around the Poconos offer some of the closest and most accessible skiing to the major populated areas of Philadelphia, Baltimore, New York and Washington DC areas.
Camelback Ski Area
Blue Mountain Ski Area
Camelback Ski Area
Elk Mountain Ski Area
Jack Frost Mountain and Big Boulder
Shawnee Mountain Ski Area
Ski Big Bear
Sno Mountain - formerly known as "Montage Mountain"
The Mount Airy Casino Resort and Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs where slots, as well as live harness racing and off-track betting, are available. There is also an Off-Track Betting (OTB) bar & grill in East Stroudsburg.
Pocono Raceway is home to two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, the Pocono 400 Presented by NASCAR in June, and the Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 in August. It also serves as a racing school and motorcycle track.
The Poconos also offer resorts which cater to folks heading into the mountains to hunt and fish. Wild turkeys, grouse, black bear and white-tailed deer are all part of the Pocono hunting scene, Pennsylvania hunting licensees are required in order to hunt, which can be obtained online or in person in Pennsylvania through the Pennsylvania Department of Fish and Wildlife.