Devil’s Hole

Paradise Valley, Pennsylvania

Kevin Whipple writes about a ski area in Pennsylvania called Devil’s Hill. According to Kevin, the location is on state game lands off Devil’s Hole Road in Paradise Valley, Pennsylvania. “It is difficult to find, but a real interesting hike,” says Kevin. The area was forced to shut down in the 1950’s after a fire started by a nearby railroad destroyed the base lodge and most of the hillside.

Kevin provides the following photos:

This picture shows one of the fireplaces still standing from the old base lodge. “It seems like there were two fireplaces on a basement level, and two on an upper level,” Kevin writes. Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.
A sheave wheel still attached to a tree. “Natural trees seem to have been used as towers,” notes Kevin. Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.
Looking up the old towline. Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.

Kevin Whipple provided the following images in September, 2008:

A 3-d view of the hillside from Google Earth. Image provided by Kevin Whipple.

An updated topographic map from the area. Image provided by Kevin Whipple.

An additional photo of the base lodge. In this picture, you can see the two chimneys on either end of the structure. There appears to have been a basement level with two fireplaces, and an upper level with two more fireplaces. Some really nice stonework. Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.


Another shot showing the remnants of the lodge. Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.


Looking down the liftline from just above the base area. Notice the sheave wheel in the tree, the only remnants of the tow I found (except for maybe the bottom tow shack which was crushed under a fallen tree). Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.


A wrap-around trail that was graded into the hillside. Heavily grown in, but it is easy to find and follow because of the grading. It is visible on the topographic map as the dotted line running to the top of the tow. It is also slightly visible in the aerial image. Photo provided by Kevin Whipple.

Reader Comments

Robin Andrew
December 4, 2008
These are OUTSTANDING!! The colors are magnificent, especially in the fireplace. Extremely IMPRESSIVE. As a photographer myself, I can REALLY APPRECIATE Kevin's eye for something SPECTACULAR!! (I was married to a Kevin Whipple!)
February 22, 2010
I have a PA hiking book that states this also used to operate as a speak easy during prohibition due to its secluded location.
September 24, 2013
I've done this hike half a dozen times over the years. We have old PA hiking books in our home which state that this location was a former speakeasy in the 20's. The location and the buildings could have been kept in use beyond the end of prohibition. However, I find it highly unlikely the location was ever used for recreational skiing. The location is amid a thick hillside forest, there's no signs of any slopes having been clear-cut long ago, and there are plenty of other recreational ski facilities in the area. Also, the rig up the trees was to hoist materials and machinery down the mountain to the speakeasy.

Ski and Tell

Speak truth to powder.

Join the conversation by logging in.

Don't have an account? Create one here.

0.02 seconds