Fostoria Map Link
About 100 miles north and a little east of Dayton is the town of Fostoria. Renowned for its glass by collectors, this place is a haven for railfans.
Use I-75 north from Dayton, or South from Toledo, to Findlay exit 157, east on State Route 12 is the easy way to get to Fostoria. From the Toledo or Columbus areas, Route 23 goes through the town, too. There are some short cuts and run-arounds, but if you are not familiar with the area, just follow Route 12 east and it goes to Fostoria. A bonus is that at Arcadia, the NS runs parallel and there are crossings providing wide open spaces photo spots.
True, the variety of power is not what it once was. But on a typical day, you can still find CSX, CR, NS, BNSF, UP, SP and others on the point of nearly 100 trains going through this town. (Even more when the national economy is strong.)
The CSX-NS diamond at the station on Main Street, just north of Route 12 (West Lytle Street) is the place to be. The traffic here is a mix of east - west movements of everything including all-container hotshots from the west coast. The NS is the old Nickel Plate Road line to Ft Wayne and also serves the grain industry west of town.
The area features block signals everywhere and a variety of backdrops from rural to cityscape add variety. Train approaches are ample as the trains whistle for the many grade crossings in the area. Did I mention the easily viewed block signals at the station? Amtrak runs through each day but you have to be a night owl to catch them.
Just east of the crossing is another crossing, this time the north-south CSX Columbus subdivision where it meets the NS at Columbus Avenue. CSX has a small yard in Fostoria, just east and a little south of the Main Street location.