This legend is a cross between the spectral hitchhiker stories you have heard before and the sort of “Resurrection Mary” type tales familiar to the Chicago area. the ghost of the white lady still walks at night. For historical background there used to be a hotel at the top of the Wopsononock Mountain that was a fairly common getaway for people in Altoona. The Wopsononock hotel and famous lookout burned in the early part of the 20th century and was never rebuilt.
In fact, at one time it was serviced by a narrow gauge railroad know as the “Alley Popper” although that has nothing to do with this tale. The road heading up to the Wopsy Lookout (as it is known hereabouts) is now Juniata Gap road in Altoona. This road is a treacherous one bearing a curve known as the “Devil’s Elbow” which has been the scene of many accidents. Apparently in the early part of the century a couple was married and was heading to the hotel at the lookout for their honeymoon. I know nothing of the father chasing them which is related to the Ebensburg tale you have given.
The legend goes that they were both from Altoona and were heading up the road leading to the hotel when the carriage went over the edge rounding the Devil’s Elbow. Both were apparently killed but the body of the husband was never recovered. Since then travelers on this road have encountered the specter of a woman in white, sometimes seen to be carrying a candle, who apparently is looking for something. Variations on the tale have her waylaying young men and looking them over to see if they are her husband, or hitching rides with young men headed for the top of the mountain and then disappearing near the Devil’s Elbow.
Apparently this spirit has also been seen on the road leading up the mountain where the lookout can be accessed from the other direction, Buckhorn Mountain, and she is also known as the “White Lady of the Buckhorn” as well as the “White Lady of Wopsononock”. The site of the old hotel now is littered with television and radio towers and is still a sort of “lover’s lane” spot for a lot of folks. Apparently some of the technicians at the towers have reported seeing her, but the most recent account (late 1990′s) involved a man who offered her a ride. She apparently got into the car and he could not see her in the rear view mirror but could see her when he turned around.
She said nothing to him and disappeared at the Devil’s Elbow. Much like Resurrection Mary, it is a difficult tale to dispute since it has occurred so often to so many people over such a long stretch of time. Although the historical details are sketchy! No one knows who she was or when the accident actually took place. If you ever get a chance to get to this area take a trip on either road and you may get a chance to run into her.