Seen In: Rocky
The original Rocky training montage
During the “Gonna Fly Now” training montage in the original Rocky, Sylvester Stallone is seen in his grey sweatsuit running alongside Philadelphia’s Schuylkill River with an arched stone bridge behind him.
The bridge has been identified as Philly’s Connecting Railway Bridge, built in 1866, and Rocky jogs south along the Kelly Drive bike trail in the movie. During the late 19th century, the Connecting Railway Bridge was a frequent subject for scenic paintings of Philadelphia.
The Schuylkill is a hotspot for Rocky filming locations in this area of Philly. It runs right past Laurel Hill Cemetery, where the characters of Adrian and Paulie Pennino are buried, as featured in Rocky Balboa and Creed, then winds past the Philadelphia Zoo on the west side, seen in Rocky II as the spot where Rocky proposes to Adrian.
Keep going south and you’ll hit the stone arched bridge and within a mile or so, end up at the Rocky Steps at the Philadelphia Museum of Art where Rocky completes his training triumphantly atop the museum steps.
Location scout Tony AKA “Captain Catholic” tracked down this road and managed to run the trail himself – “It has barely changed!”, he says of the Kelly Drive trail, which has been repaved as a bike path with a yellow line running down the center, but is otherwise nearly identical to its appearance in Rocky. A main thoroughfare lies right next to the bike path, allowing vehicles to pass through the area.
“So there you have it,” Tony says, “Kelly Drive near the Connecting Railway Bridge. Makes for a fantastic run up to the steps of the Art Museum. No wonder Rocky did it!”
Many thanks to Rocky Location Detective Tony AKA “Captain Catholic” for his work in tracking down this spot!