Pittsburgh: Cruising The Three Rivers

I’ve seen Pittsburgh from the road in the car, on foot from walking and running and from up in the hills. Pittsburgh is known for it’s three rivers, so it was time to see the city from the rivers themselves. The Gateway Clipper Fleet was going to help me accomplish this.

Gateway Clipper Fleet is located in the historic Station Square on the south side of the Monongahela River. The ramp down to the fleet features murals representing Pittsburgh, throughout it’s history. Being a huge sports fan I focused on the murals of the Steelers, Penguins and Pirates all representing the city with championships and the colors black and gold.

Gateway to Pittsburgh murals - Gateway Clipper Fleet

Gateway to Pittsburgh murals - Gateway Clipper Fleet

They have a fleet of five boats, are open year around and you have dozens of cruises to choose from. There are public ones for sightseeing, dining, dancing and day tips. Private ones for weddings, corporate and school events. These boats also serve as shuttles for sporting and special events.

Pittsburgh - Gateway Clipper Fleet pier

Pittsburgh - Gateway Clipper Fleet pier

I’m taking the one hour city tour cruise on “The Duchess”. Very reasonably priced.

Pittsburgh - Gateway Clipper Fleet - Ferry

Heading out on the Monongahela River toward the point you will pass by the two historic Wabash Bridge piers. They are all of whats left from the old railroad Wabash Bridge, demolished in 1948. Throughout the tour we were given bits of history and trivia from the crew.

Pittsburgh - Monongahela River - Wabash Bridge pier

Right before reaching the point where the three rivers intersect you come up to the Fort Pitt Bridge which links the Fort Pitt tunnel with Point State Park.

Pittsburgh - Monongahela River - Ft. Pitt Bridge

As you go onto the Allegheny River from the point you’ll be moving along the North Shore neighborhood and you’ll pass by PNC Park home to the Pittsburgh Pirates. On the other side of the river is downtown, in which you get a great view of the skyline when at the ballpark.

Pittsburgh - Allegheny River - PNC Park

As you go down the Allegheny River you’ll pass by the old Heinz 57 factory, the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, the Ft. Duquesne, 6th, 7th and 16th Street Bridges along with many more. You’ll come to the Fort Wayne (Pennsylvania) Railroad Bridge. It’s a double-deck bridge though the lower deck is not in use. The bridge was one of many in the region raised to increase navigation capabilities. This one in 1918. It’s easily seen by the lighter concrete that was placed on top of the original, darker stoned peers.

Pittsburgh - Allegheny River - Fort Wayne Railroad Bridge

Pittsburgh - Allegheny River

Last but not least we went on to the Ohio River. You’ll pass by the North Shore neighborhood again and this time Heinz Field home to the NFL’s Pittsburgh Steelers and college football’s University of Pittsburgh Panthers. Great views of the surrounding hills can be had.

Pittsburgh - Ohio River

Looking back towards the point you’ll get the best views of Point State Park and the city skyline behind. The Fountain at the head of the point is currently under construction and will reopen in 2012, just enhancing the scenic view.

Pittsburgh - Point State Park - Downtown Skyline - Ohio River

Pittsburgh - Point State Park - Downtown Skyline - Ohio River

There are some great panoramic photo opportunities out on the water.

Pittsburgh - Ohio River - Panoramic river, skyline, Heinz Field shot

It was a fast hour, definitely one of the highlights of my time in Pittsburgh. No matter the occasion/event or just looking to sightsee or looking for a scenic way to get to a sporting event, the Gateway Clipper Fleet definitely should be on the top of your list.

Pittsburgh - Gateway Clipper Fleet - Station Square

What’s your favorite thing to see along the rivers in Pittsburgh? What city or area is your favorite to cruise on the river to checkout the sites?

4 responses to “Pittsburgh: Cruising The Three Rivers

  1. I bumped into your site while doing some research, so I thought I’d drop you a little note. This Pittsburgh gal is always glad to hear of traveling tales through this neck of the woods. I love this city with all my heart. We bleed black & gold around here! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Oh how I envy your adventures. Enjoy this journey, and all the ones yet to come. Be safe.


    • Thanks Kate for the kind words. I love the city. Still a lot more to explore. I’m always craving a Primanti Bros. sandwich too haha. ๐Ÿ™‚ The scenery is unmatched. It is amazing how many people are always sporting the black and gold when I am out and about. I was there recently on the weekend the Steelers played the Ravens, was just amazed by the support and passion everyone has. Take care! Aaron

  2. From everyone at The Gateway Clipper Fleet- we love the pictures, comments, and over all blog! You’ve highlighted the city and the Gateway Clipper Fleet, and we truly appreciate it! We hope to have you back down again to visit- have a great day!

    • Thank you! It was an amazing trip seeing a lot of what Pittsburgh had to offer via the rivers. You guys made it a great experience. Will definitively be back again soon.

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