Posts Tagged ‘conway yard’

An Alco Two for Tuesday

December 27, 2022

We know many of you enjoy seeing Alco locomotives so here are two of them for Tuesday.

In the top image former Pennsylvania Railroad Alco RS11 No. 7621 has a Penn Central roster number as it sits mostly backlighted by the sun in the Conway Yard engine facility near Pittsburgh in September 1968.

In the bottom image, Alco RS3 No. 5550 is in Conway the same month. To the left are two Alcos and to the right are two Baldwins.

Photographs by Robert Farkas

Still Says Pennsy

June 23, 2022

It may be the early Penn Central era, but this locomotive still in Pennsylvania Railroad markings is working in what is believed to be Conway Yard near Pittsburgh. The image was made in 1968 or in 1969.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

One Day in Conway

June 3, 2021

Penn Central Alco C425 No. 2429 must feel at home in Conway Yard near Pittsburgh. The unit was built for the Pennsylvania Railroad in March 1965. Conway was, of course, built by the PRR. This image was made in early 1973. No. 2429 would later join the Conrail motive power roster.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Rare Find at Conway

March 22, 2021

A rare Penn Central Alco RS-27, No. 2406 on the left is one of the many locomotives at the engine facility at Conway Yard near Pittsburgh on July 1, 1972. The facility was built by the Pennsylvania Railroad and continues to be a major hub for Norfolk Southern.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Sitting in Conway

December 6, 2020

It is late 1968 in Conway Yard neard Pittsburgh. It’s appropriate that this Baldwin DS44-660 switcher still has Pennsylvania Railroad markings because Conway way, after all, built by the Pennsy.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

It Doesn’t Look Like This Now

January 22, 2020

The early years of Penn Central were marked by a motive power fleet that still had quite a few units wearing their former Pennsylvania Railroad or New York Central markings.

Such was the case at Conway Yard near Pittsburgh in the late 1960s.

Many, but not all, of the units around the turntable are still clad in PRR Keystones.

What some guys might give to be able to travel back in time to this spot for a day or even an hour to see motive power that is largely gone.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

An Hour or So at East Conway

January 7, 2017


Three trains came out of Conway Yard and then backed up to switch tracks during my time there.

The title of this post notwithstanding, I don’t know how much time I spent at East Conway near Pittsburgh in early December.

Hanging out there was not on our agenda when my friend Adam and I ventured toward Pittsburgh. It just sort of happened.

We thought we might be able to catch westbound train 21Q, which was being led by the Pennsylvania Railroad heritage locomotive.

Earlier in the year we had caught the New York Central H unit at East Conway. Given that the PRR and NYC merged in  1968 to form Penn Central, there was a certain symmetry to photographing the PRR and NYC heritage locomotives in the same place in the same year.

As it turned out, we spent more time at East Conway than expected. The 21Q had to wait for a new crew to arrive and there was opposing traffic coming in and out of Conway Yard.

We had been told by local railfans on another trip to Pittsburgh that it is all right to hang out on the bridge over the East Conway interlocking.

The bridge carries a street into the yard and, we were told, it is a public street.

I’m not sure about that, but during the two times that we spent on that bridge in 2016 no one from NS told us to leave and there were always a number of locals there making photographs.

NS has installed security cameras on the bridge, although that may have more to do with checking who and what is coming in and out of the yard.

Getting images of Conway Yard from this bridge had been on my “to do” list for some time.

So everything seemed to work out during this visit. It would have been nice had it not been overcast, but I can live with that.

Now that I’ve made numerous images at the East Conway bridge, I’m not sure I’m all that motivated to go back there except, perhaps, to photograph something specific, like say, the Penn Central heritage unit. I’ve pretty much documented operations there.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Four movements at one time at East Conway.

Four movements at one time at East Conway.

A light power move comes out of the yard for head room.

A light power move comes out of the yard for head room.

Keeping watch ahead for a light power move returning to the yard.

Keeping watch ahead for a light power move returning to the yard.

Keeping watch from a gondola as a manifest freight backs up at East Conway.

Keeping watch from a gondola as a manifest freight backs up at East Conway.

An eastbound stack train has a new crew and is ready to go east.

An eastbound stack train has a new crew and is ready to go east.

An eastbound stack train passes a manifest freight backing into Conway.

An eastbound stack train passes a manifest freight backing into Conway.

Pair of Pennsy Keystones

December 6, 2016

It's a Pennsylvania Railroad keystone rolling over the top of another Pennsy keystone in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. NS No. 8102 is leading westbound stack train 21Q.

It’s one Pennsylvania Railroad keystone rolling over the top of another Pennsy keystone in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. NS No. 8102 is leading westbound stack train 21Q, which is passing an eastbound stack train on the Fort Wayne Line.

Last Saturday my friend Adam Barr and I headed for Pittsburgh for a morning of railfanning Norfolk Southern in the steel city.

We had been in town about a half-hour when an an online report popped up that the Pennsylvania Railroad heritage unit was headed west past Manor, Pennsylvania, with a load of sea cans. That turned out to be stack train 21Q.

Manor is east of the Pittsburgh where the Pennsylvania Turnpike crosses over the NS Pittsburgh line between Pittsburgh and Altoona, Pennsylvania.

We headed for California Avenue with the idea of getting an image of the locomotive paying tribute to the PRR on a structure that was built by the PRR, the Ohio Connecting Bridge that today carries the NS Mon Line.

When I think of railroads in Pittsburgh, structures such as this come to mind. I also think of the former Pennsylvania Railroad.

We were able to get ahead of the train and catch it at CP Leets in Leetsdale. Although I had my scanner on, we didn’t get any warning of the train approaching because I didn’t pick it up calling any signals.

Our “heads up” was another railfan bolting from his car and running toward the bridge over the tracks that carries a road leading into an industrial park. I was barely able to get the shot I wanted of the Pennsy heritage unit passing former Pennsy position light signals.

We weren’t sure if we could beat the 21Q to East Conway because it was moving along at a good clip. But it turned out the stacker would have a long wait there because of traffic working in Conway Yard that needed to come out to East Conway for head room as well as the need for the 21Q to change crews.

Our last photo op of the 21Q was planned for the bridge over the Beaver River in Beaver Falls. But things did not go according to plan because Adam, who was driving, could not find a parking spot in a timely manner.

He dropped me off at the east end of the sidewalk of the bridge and I walked as fast as I could toward the river. I wouldn’t make it.

The 21Q had already called the signal at the Brighton and I could see its headlight illuminating the sides of the containers of an eastbound stack train that was slowly making its way toward Conway.

I noticed the Fort Wayne Line bridge had an old, but faded Pennsylvania Railroad keystone and decided to make that the focal point of my last photograph of NS 8102, thus ending my chase of the 21Q with an image of a pair of Pennsy keystones.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders


Coming at you on the OC bridge.


When I think of Pittsburgh I think of massive bridges and the Pennsylvania Railroad. This is as close as I can come to recreating the golden age of the PRR in the steel city.


For the second time in 2016, I caught the Pennsylvania Railroad heritage locomotive passing by former PRR position light signals.


With a new crew on board, the 21Q gets underway at East Conway.


A roster-type shot at East Conway of NS 8102.

Conrail H Unit Passes through N.E. Ohio

August 8, 2016




The past several weeks the Conrail heritage unit of Norfolk Southern has been leading trains through Northeast Ohio.

Two weeks ago I caught it going by Berea tower (top photograph). This is a significant location both locally but also for the Conrail system.

Conrail’s route structure was basically an X with the lines crossing at Cleveland and, specifically, at Berea tower.

On Saturday, I caught the Conrail H unit leading again, this time at East Conway (middle and bottom photographs). Conway Yard was an important point on the former Pennsylvania Railroad ever since it opened in 1957. This continued through Penn Central and Conrail and remains so with Norfolk Southern.

Many photos have been taken throughout the years at this iconic spot and I thought this would be a worthy inclusion with those.

Article and Photographs by Todd Dillon

Sunday Afternoon With NS

July 31, 2012

The nose of the lead locomotive of an eastbound stone train peeks through the vegetation.

These days a primary reason to hang out next to a busy Norfolk Southern mainline for several hopes is the hope of seeing one of the railroad’s 20 heritage locomotives.

That wasn’t the primary reason why the Akron Railroad Club held its summer picnic at the Willis Picnic area of the Bedford Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks system on Sunday. Yeah, we chose this site because it is next to the NS Cleveland Line, which is a very busy route.

Our hopes of seeing a heritage unit, though, were dashed early. Although three such units had been in Conway Yard in Pittsburgh earlier, none of them were going to be assigned to trains likely to pass by our location during the picnic.

But NS sent 28 trains by during our 11 hours in the park. Shown here is a sampling of the action from Sunday.

Photographs by Craig Sanders

A short stack train rushed past headed west.The view is looking west into the park.

The head end of another westbound intermodal train passes over the bridge of the street leading into the park.

The other side of the bridge from the park side. An eastbound RoadRailer approaches.

Getting up close and personal with the RoadRailer.

The trees made nice framing devices for the trains.

Another in the parade of late day westbounds.

Headed eastbound in the dying light of the day. It was the second to last train that we would see.