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Construction Starts on Capricorn Coast Rail Trail

The Queensland Goverenment has honoured previously promised funding for the construction of the first section of the Capricorn Coast Rail Trail at Yeppoon. This will be 4.5km of sealed rail trail from near the centre of Yeppoon to the edge of town and the $1.1m project will also include the refurbishment of four bridges.

, The Rockhampton Regional Council has commenced work and thi section is planned to be open in March 2013.

click here for a full description and map of the Rail Trail.


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Capricorn Coast BUGs are very excited with the start of construction. (Jo Emery)

Victorian Hume Region Significant Tracks and Trails Strategy Survey

Twelve local government authorities in Victoria’s Hume region, along with Hume Regional Development Australia and the Victorian Government are in the process of developing a strategy to further develop existing and potential significant walking, cycling, mountain bike riding and horse riding tracks and trails in the region. In order to improve the network of tracks and trails in the region, they want to understand the needs and interests of existing and potential track and trail users so that they can plan accordingly.

We encourage you to participate in the survey.

Details of relevant open and prospective rail trails in ths region can be found here.

Surveys need to be completed by 7 December 2012.

Please click here for the survey.


O’Keefe Rail Trail Improvements Continue

Improvements and developments on the O’Keefe Rail Trail in northern Victoria continue apace. Over the past year all the former low level crossings have been replaced with at level bridges and the sub-standard suspension bridge over Axe Creek has also been replaced with an at-grade bridge.  When combined with surface improvements and better signage the rail trail is a far better experience now.

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Cyclist enjoying one of the bridges that replaced low level crossings

Please click here for a complete description of the O’Keefe Rail Trail.

The hard working Friends of the Bendigo – Kilmore Rail Trail have also just provided us with a summary of the following good news and activities

Axedale town path open

Now you can walk or ride all the way from the Bendigo Creek to the Campaspe River on an off-road trail. The rail trail now takes you across Crows Road and winds its way through the town to finish at the Campaspe River Reserve

Heathcote town path under construction

Once they’d finished at Axedale, the contractors packed up and moved south to Heathcote where a combination of gravel and sealed path will run for approx. 3.2 km between Speed Street and Pink Cliffs Road is now under construction. Talk about getting the trail from Axedale to Heathcote is all very well, but actually seeing a bobcat at work is getting the residents excited. We’re also excited – it’s the first bit of new trail beyond Axedale since the first section of trail was opened in the early 1990s.

Station signs going back up

It’s been a long time since they were taken down and now station signs are returning. With the help of a council community grant, council, fundraising by the Friends and a lot of time and muscle power, we’re installing five signs to mark some of the major stops between Bendigo and Axedale. Travellers along the trail will then be able to see where the train once stopped at Rifle Butts, Rangelea, Strathfieldsaye, Longlea and Axedale. A sixth sign will also show where the Heathcote station was located. The Friends are planning to install the signs at volunteer working bees before the end of December 2012.

Green gates – going, going, gone

The 16 green gates that were the bane of cyclists and horses travelling along the original O’Keefe trail are now gone.  Weren’t they part of the trail’s own history? Well, yes, but we don’t deny they were removed by Friends’ and council muscle power with some pleasure.

Bendigo Rail Trail Connections

At North Bendigo the rail trail connects with the Bendigo Creek Trail to get users closer to the centre of Bendigo.  However this involves an informal crossing of the busy five lane Midland Highway (Napier St).  The Friends group regard this crossing as hazardous and are lobbying council and VicRoads to consider this in their planning

What is also needed is a better connection to the Bendigo railway staton.  With the improved VLine rail service to Bendigo even day trips by public transport are practical, refer Summer 2011/2012 Rail Trail Connections magazine for an article by members doing just this.  Again the Friends group have requested that the City of Greater Bendigo, in conjunction with VicTrack and V/Line, create the ‘missing link’ shared path from the Bendigo Railway Station to McIvor Highway/Baxter Street. This route could utilise sections of the existing railway reserve, to create an off road shared path. From here it becomes the existing ‘Back Creek’ trail which connects to the Bendigo Creek Trail, which then connects to the O’Keefe Rail Trail.  They have shown the proposed new link on Google Maps here.


Australia’s Longest Rail Trail Bridge Open

Hundreds enjoyed a beautiful spring day for the long awaited opening by local state member Bill Tilley of the Sandy Creek bridge on the High Country Rail Trail, near Tallangatta in north east Victoria.
The 600m long bridge with its “red sticks” is a real landmark as it crosses the Sandy Creek inlet and removes a gap that previously required a 5km deviation on the busy Murray Valley Highway.
The bridge is a testament to all who never gave up on this dream for over a decade since the first section of the rail trail opened.  This is particularly true for both the voluntary Bonegilla and Tallangatta Rail Trail Advisory Groups and Parklands Albury-Wodonga who manage the rail trail in partnership.
The project also included a 15 metre cantilevered viewing platform and resurfacing of 10km of trail between Huon and Tallangatta.  The new, fine gravel surface is smooth and wide, a pleasure to ride on.
The project was funded by a $1.35m grant from the Victorian Government together with $0.3m from project partners Towong Shire Council, City of Wodonga and Indigo Shire Council.

The rail trail is now continuous from Bandiana to Old Tallangatta with a road side path connecting it to Wodonga.

Please click here for a complete description of the High Country Rail Trail.

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Part of the crowd with the bridge in the background
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Tehy came by boat and bike, as well as foot!
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The cantilievered viewing platform.
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The upgraded trail surface between Huon and Tallangatta.

More Funding for the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail (VIC)

Media Release: Wednesday 17 October 2012


Member for Morwell Russell Northe today announced Coalition Government funding of $200,000 for the upgrade and enhancement of the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail (GPRT) – stage 1.

Mr Northe said the funding formed part of an overall $800,000 2010 election commitment to the GPRT.

The $200,000 funding will complete approximately 14 kilometres of a shared-use section of the trail from Glengarry to Cowwarr.

“The 67-kilometre GPRT stretches from Traralgon to Stratford,” Mr Northe said. “The trail passes through dairy country, and offers sweeping views of the Great Dividing Range to the north.”

“The section from Glengarry to Cowwarr via Toongabbie has two creek crossings that can be walked through, and the trail reserve has significant remnant stands of native trees, shrubs and grasses.

“This funding will upgrade the existing trail with gravel, installing safe road crossings and constructing a crossing over Eagle Hawk Creek”, Mr Northe said.

Mr Northe said the Glengarry to Cowwarr section of the GPRT would improve connectivity for local communities and become a significant tourism attraction for the region.

The 14km upgrade was pivotal to the opening of the long awaited Glengarry to Traralgon section of the GPRT.

Chairperson of the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail committee Helen Hoppner said the upgrade was a great victory for the community who looked forward to the flow on effect of tourism, economic and environmental benefits.

During the works there will be disruptions to the users of the trail and the committee seeks the community’s patience and understanding as the end result will be a great outcome for the community.

“The trail will give local residents and visitors the chance to experience the varied landscapes of the Latrobe Valley and Wellington Shire and take in the many tourism and recreational assets along the way,” Mr Northe said.

“Completing this section of the trail will deliver economic benefits to the region through additional tourism opportunities and allow access the Glengarry, Toongabbie and Cowwarr by alternative and recreational transport.”

Work on the Glengarry to Cowwarr section of the GPRT is expected to be completed in April 2013.

Media contact: Russell Northe 5133 9088.

For more information about the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail see the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail Description.



Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail (VIC) – Submissions Invited

The Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail is a proposed 45 km long walking and cycling trail between Daylesford and Woodend with possible links to Kyneton, Malmsbury, Macedon and Gisborne.

It is part of the Crossing Borders Tracks and Trails Project, a joint initiative of the Hepburn, Macedon Ranges, Central Goldfields Shire Councils and the City of Ballarat.

The public are invited to provide input to the Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail project by completing an online survey or by providing a written submission.

  • The online survey can be found by clicking here.
  • Written submission can be posted to Jayson Moran at Insight Leisure Planning, Suite 129, 199 Toorak Road, South Yarra, VIC 3141
  • Submissions can also be emailed to Jayson at jm@insightleisureplanning.com.au

The ball really is rolling with The Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail. In further developments the rail trail’s Project Reference Group will soon hold the first of a series of meetings scheduled during the six months feasibility study period.
The group comprises representatives from:

  • Insight Leisure Planning
  • Hepburn Shire Council
  • Macedon Ranges Shire Council
  • Rail Trails Australia
  • Bicycle Network Victoria
  • Department of Sustainability and Environment
  • Parks Victoria
  • Daylesford Spa Country Railway
  • Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail Working Group

Rail Trails Australia members are encouraged to take part in The Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail online survey.

For more information regarding submissions for The Daylesford to Macedon Ranges Rail Trail, please click here.

Submissions close 9 November 2012.


The Barossa Trail Extension (SA)

The new section of Barossa Trail will be 27km in total, and will be known as the Jack Bobridge Track, after the Olympic cyclist.

Stage 1 of the project involves the Lyndoch to Kalbeeba section, alongside the existing railway line.

Stage 2 of the project, the Tanunda to Lyndoch section, commenced shortly after the completion of Stage 1 in July. It is hoped that the whole Jack Bobridge Track will be completed by early 2013 to coincide with the 2013 Santos Tour Down Under. Sections of this stage will not follow the railway, but it will be a cycle/walking trail beside the North Para River.

The whole trail will then connect to the existing trail from Tanunda to Angaston giving a total length of about 36km.

The Commonwealth is contributing $4.81m to the $5.44m project.

Click here for the Barossa Rail Tral description.


High Country Sandy Creek Bridge Opening

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A local BUG enjoying a preview of the bridge / Jack Vukasinovic

The High Country Rail Trail Cycling Festival over the weekend of 20 – 21 October includes the official opening of the iconic 600m Sandy Creek Bridge.

Four rides, a bridge run and one walk will converge on the Sandy Creek Bridge by 11.30am. Rides start at Tallangatta (10am), Tangambalanga (10am), Ebden (9.30am) and Bandiana (9am) or Bridge Run starting at Huon (10am).

MORE INFORMATION AND TO REGISTER: www.parklands-alburywodonga.org.au 02 6023 6714

This event is FREE. However, to assist with organisation and catering, it would appreciate if you could register on line before the day.

Tallangatta Tall Trestle Treadle

Also, back by popular demand for a 5th year, is the Tallangatta Tall Trestle Treadle, with four great rides from Corryong to Tallangatta, bus between, morning tea and afternoon tea and lunch at Koetong Pub on Sunday 21 October.

Bookings essential Rob Caddell 0417294234 Email:tallangattattt@yahoo.com.au

More details at www.parklands-alburywodonga.org.au

Please click here for a complete description of the High Country Rail Trail.


Trek the Trail in Perth

Railway Reserves logo webTrek to showcase Wooroloo – Chidlow route

This year’s Trek the Trail will be held on Sunday 23 September.

Last year’s event had to be cancelled due to severe weather conditions, however the same route is planned to showcase Railway Reserves Heritage Trail from Wooroloo to Chidlow.

Trek is an annual event organised by the Shire of Mundaring, in conjunction with the Mundaring Visitor Centre, Mundaring and Hills Historical Society and Mundaring Arts Centre.

The event, held on a different section of the Railway Reserves Heritage Trail each year, is aimed at promoting the area’s beautiful trails, natural environment, arts, tourism and significant history whilst promoting physical and social activity.

The 2012 route includes Wandoo occurrences, historic buildings of the Wooroloo sanatorium and travelling through nature reserves and lush farmland, blossoming with September wildflowers.

There will be displays highlighting the historic sites, flora and fauna, interactive artworks and activities displayed along the trail.

As with previous years, local artists have the opportunity to enter the Mundaring Arts Centre Trek the Trail Sculpture Awards.

 Mundaring Community Bank Branch Bendigo Bank in partnership with Shire of Mundaring will hold the Have a go with Bendigo Photography Competition.

 For more information visit the Trek website www.trekthetrail.com.au.

Click here for a detailed descriptioin of the Railway Reserves Heritage Trail