If you’re a railfan the Horseshoe Curve is most likely on your bucket list. The 2,375 foot long curve was build around a lake, dam, three reservoirs in the Kittanning Run valley. The Keystone Corridor is Pennsylvania’s main line connecting the east coast to points west to Ohio and Indiana. Nearly 60 Norfolk Southern trains pass through this busy corridor daily along with Amtrak’s Pennsylvanian service running between New York and Pittsburgh.
When you visit the curve plan on spending the whole morning or afternoon or even the whole day. This railfanning park has multiple picnic tables and benches throughout the park you can easily find a shaded spot up on the summit. You may want to bring some comfortable walking shoes since it is nearly a 200 stair climb up to the summit. The other option is funicular (a passenger car that runs on tracks with a cable pulley system) that runs every half hour up and down the summit.
What to bring with you to the curve:
- Extra batteries
- Bottle water
If you enjoy photographing trains make sure you bring a lens with some long range capabilities to get trains heading west to east around the curve. A tripod maybe helpful as well.
The great thing about having a scanner at this location is there are multiple track detectors along this route. Since the park is high up you can get great reception.
160.800 NS Altoona East Dispatcher
160.860 Rose Yard
160.980 JBS Industrial
452.9375 EOT (front-rear)
457.9375 EOT (rear-front)