Finally, I Got To See The World Famous Horseshoe Curve.
I first read about the Horseshoe Curve, located near Altoona, Blair County, Pennsylvania, in one of those factoid features in a newspaper when I was in grade school. I was curious about it then, and pretty much everything else , and told myself I would visit it someday. Well a half century later I finally did.
I was traveling to Pittsburgh to attend my niece Cassidy’s graduation from Duquesne Law School. While looking for somewhere to stop along the way I came across an article about the World Famous Horseshoe Curve and decided to visit on my drive to Pittsburgh. The visitors center is located in Logan Township a few mile off of I99.
Upon arriving at the visitor center I soon learned that in order to cross the Allegheny Mountains by train, this 2300 foot railroad curve was completed in 1854. It was a remarkable feat of engineering in it’s day. And still is. I walked up 194 stairs to the train viewing area (the funicular was closed due to Covid-19 concerns, but I would have walked up the stairs anyway.)
As soon as I reached the bottom of the stairs I heard another train. I immediately ran up the 194 stairs, my legs are still sore, three days later, and watched a very long train pass along the Horseshoe Curve. This was the engine pulling the train,
I wished I had more time to explore the exhibits, and learn more about this historic site and it’s influence on our Nation’s industrial development. But I had a dinner engagement in Pittsburgh and I hadn’t even had breakfast yet. Here is a link to some more photographs from my visit. World Famous Horseshoe Curve. May 15 2021.
“The introduction of so powerful an agent as steam to a carriage on wheels will make a great change in the situation of man.” — Thomas Jefferson, 1802