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Amy Gillett (Adelaide Hills) Rail Trail - Trail Description



Amy Gillett (Adelaide Hills) Rail Trail

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Type: Rail trail
Location: Mount Lofty ranges, 49km from Adelaide
Start/end: Oakbank to Mt Torrens
Status: Open
Length open: 16km
Surface: Sealed
Terrain: Flat with moderate climb between Charleston and Mt Torrens
Best seasons: All
Public transport: Coach
Features: wineries, tourist
Contact Region: South Australia
Cows between Hartmann Road and Springhead  Road (2020)
Cows between Hartmann Road and Springhead Road (2020)
Suitable for walking Suitable for cycling mountain bikes Suitable for cycling touring hybrid bikes Suitable for wheelchairs Suitable for horse riding Suitable for prams Suitable for scooters in line skates



  • A high quality trail close to Adelaide
  • Funding obtained Oct 2020 for extension to Birdwood
  • Potential to extend to Mt Pleasant - 32km in total
  • Picturesque ride in Adelaide Hills district


  • Short scenic ride loops available in the Oakbank and Woodside districts
  • Check out the old German town of Hahndorf
  • Rail journeys on steam train from Mt Barker
  • Check out the many wineries in the nearby area
  • MTB/BMX tracks at Woodside and Charleston
  • Melbas chocolate factory on the trail at Woodside
  • Check out the fantastic National Motor Museum at Birdwood

Support Services

Bike About logo webBike About Cycling Tours

Providing Adelaide, Adelaide Hills, Barossa Valley, Kangaroo Island & Flinders Ranges with the very finest in Cycling tours & Bike hire services. 


  • This is a very picturesque 16km long rail trail very near to Adelaide. It will be 32km long when fully developed all the way to Mt Pleasant.
  • The entire length has a sealed surface and is open to walkers, cyclists and horse riders.
  • It is named in memory of Amy Gillett, a South Australian track cyclist and rower who represented Australia in both sports. She was killed when a driver crashed into the Australian squad of cyclists with whom she was training in Germany in 2005.


  • Toilets and picnic facilities at Woodside, Charleston and Mt Torrens
  • Bicycle maintenance stand at BMX/MTB track, Station Rd, Woodside

Oakbank to Woodside (4.5km)

  • This first stage of the trail opened in January 2010, and actually starts at the end of Elizabeth St in Oakbank where the old railway station once stood. There are no visible remains of railway or station in Oakbank.
  • The first section of the trail is on-road on the busy Onkaparinga Valley Road for about 1km towards Woodside. On the left is the Oakbank racecourse, home of steeplechasing and jumping in SA, which combines with flat racing over the Easter weekend festival and includes the famous Great Eastern Steeplechase.
  • A safer option is to commence from the parking area on Gillman Road, about 500m north of the start of the rail trail.
  • The trail is then a smooth sealed surface that follows the old rail alignment for 3.5km
  • At Woodside the trail crosses Onkaparinga Valley Road and curves around behind the shops. If you are hungry or in need of a good coffee, there are cafes and bakeries on Onkaparinga Valley Road.
  • Public toilets are located in the sporting precinct near the road crossing.
  • The trail is on-road along Station Road and Langbein Avenue.
  • The Woodside BMX/MTB track has been constructed on the site of the old Woodside station. It is landscaped and maintained by volunteers from the Love Woodside Group. The station's well, used to supply water to steam trains and stock, has been restored at the northern end of the station precinct. Ample car parking is provided near the BMX/MTB tracks and picnic facilities and a bike maintenance stand have been provided.
  • From the end of Langbein Avenue the trail becomes a rail trail proper again and passes through a picturesque heavily wooded section of the Woodside township. The trail passes Barristers Block Winery on the left, before it again crosses Onkaparinga Valley Road.
  • Melba's Chocolates and Woodside Cheese Wrights are signposted to the right just north of the road crossing.

Woodside to Charleston (5km)

  • This section of trail was opened in June 2011.
  • At Charleston, the trail does a dog leg to the right along Newmans Rd.
  • Shaded picnic facilities, including free BBQs, and toilets are located off Newmans Rd near the intersection with Onkaparinga Valley Road.
  • Charleston Hotel does all-day meals on weekends

Charleston to Mt Torrens (7km)

    This section of trail was opened in May 2014 and features scenic farmland and traverses some deep shady cuttings and high embankments.
  • It is a steady climb from Charleston to the road crossing at Mt Torrens.
  • The trail currently ends at Oval Rd on the northwest side of Mt Torrens. Turn right onto the unsealed Oval Rd for access to Mt Torrens township.
  • Mt Torrens has a general store and hotel. Toilets are located at the oval.

Background Information

The railway line from Balhannah to Mt Pleasant was opened in 1918, following some 60 years of meetings and negotiations, and ran as a freight and passenger service. The line had six stations and seven halts. The six stations were Oakbank, Woodside, Charleston, Mount Torrens, Birdwood, and Mount Pleasant. Typically the halts were located near level crossings at Mappinga, Riverview, Kayannie, Muralappie, Milkappa Road, Crane Road, and Narcoonah. Up to 19 trains would service the Easter Oakbank Races and most would be parked at Woodside until required for the return trip to Adelaide. Troops were carried to and from Woodside Army Camp with their siding called ‘Riverview’.

The line was closed on 4 March 1963, and the former corridor between Balhannah and Oakbank has mostly returned to private landowners.The railway line from Balhannah to Mt Pleasant was opened in 1918 and closed in 1964. The former corridor between Balhannah and Oakbank has mostly returned to private landowners.


The trail is managed by Dept Planning, Transport and Infrastructure.  To report any issues or problems please contact or phone 1800 018 313

Other Support Services and Attractions

There is a shop in Woodside that has bicycles and spare parts and does repairs. It is located at 33 Onkaparinga Valley Road and open 7 days/week except public holidays.


October 2020

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05 December , 2019 by Martincousins

My partner and I did this trail in late one afternoon in September 2018. We stumbled on it after visiting Hahndorf. We managed to hire good bikes including an e-bike from the Eco Adventure Group behind the Bicycle Fix cycle store in the small town of Woodside. The picturesque scenery of the Mount Lofty Ranges and e-bike made this ride a highlight of the whole SA trip for her! There are wineries along this trail, as well as chocolatiers and historic features. The trail is also popular with locals, with many people out cycling, walking or running. There are options for side trips and we took an alternative route on return to Charleston.

27 January , 2016 by nickbarker

Did this trail this Australia Day with our little one in tow in a trailer. Its a nice trail but is lacking in amenities/shady shelters and has a couple of annoying gaps. The trail surface is great and smooth the whole way but there are a couple of busy on road sections which get a bit scary when towing a baby in a trailer.... The trail also just 'ends' on the outskirts of Mount Torrens. My suggestions would be... A nice little cafe/kiosk in Woodside next to the jumps park and rail trail - would be a little gold mine for whoever takes this on.... Some sort of sign at the end near Mount Torrens A continuation of the trail through to Mount Pleasant! Was a nice way to spend the day though :)

28 May , 2015 by Binnari

Found this trail while exploring the hills. As I came from NSW and had the bike in the vehicle. Asked at the local bike shop and the brochure I was given was out of date. Found it much longer than I thought had a great ride along length. Looks like it is about time this site was updated to show the current length of the ride. Some form of printed info available at shops and information centres would help those who are not locals.

05 May , 2014 by 

Rode this excellent trail yesterday. Rang my bell whenever I saw a pedestrian, but the people without their dogs on leads was a real worry. I was scared they would run under my wheel and bring me down. There would be tears if the dog was hurt I imagine

19 July , 2013 by Steve Manoel

Totally agree with you Greyhoundlover, I personally sound the bell on my bike when approaching other trail users regardless of what mode of transport they are using. Also looking forward to using the next section when it is complete.

09 June , 2013 by Greyhoundlover

I seem to be the only one offering comments, but here is a suggestion. At all access points to the trail, I would like to see a notice requesting cyclists to give some warning when approaching people on foot or horseback from behind. On that smooth surface it is impossible to hear bicycles coming. I am amazed there have been no accidents.... a startled dog or horse will swing around to face a perceived threat, could push its owner / rider into the path of bikes. Please give this some consideration.

06 June , 2013 by Greyhoundlover

Thanks for that, I was quite puzzled but think I have seen that sign. Will look for it next time. I'm looking forward to walking the new section when it's finished, Great work!

31 May , 2013 by gbull

The trail extension starts in Newman Road about 50 metres to the east of the existing trail. Look for a stobie pole with HANSON Lot 102 written on it. The driveway by the pole is the access road.

26 May , 2013 by Greyhoundlover

Love the trail! I live in Birdwood & often drive to Charleston to walk my greyhound on it. I see that work is underway for the Charleston to Mt Torrens section... lovely, I can't wait! But I have been trying to workout where in Charleston that section starts & so far I can't find it. Can anyone enlighten me?

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Amy Gillet Rail Trail – A Koala friendly trail

(Posted: 15/03/21)

In December 2019 a bushfire spread through the hills and valleys around the Amy Gillett Rail Trail (South Australia) resulting in the loss of life and substantial damage to property and vegetation.


Amy Gillett Rail Trail helps to revive the Adelaide Hills

(Posted: 15/03/21)

In December 2019 a bushfire spread through the hills and valleys around the Amy Gillett Rail Trail resulting in the loss of life and substantial damage to property and vegetation. Twelve months later, regrowth is occurring and the local community is pulling together to return to something near normal. In February, the Adelaide Hills Council held a ‘Festival of the Hills’ event which created an atmosphere of enjoyment, full of music, light, colour and entertainment.


$2.6m secured for Amy Gillett Bikeway Rail Trail in South Australia

(Posted: 12/10/20)

Adelaide Hills Council has received $2.6 million of Federal funding to complete stage 4 of the popular Amy Gillett Bikeway Bikeway Rail Trail from Mount Torrens to Birdwood.


Extension of Adelaide Hills Amy Gillett Rail Trail in South Australia

(Posted: 29/04/20)

The Adelaide Hills Council has identified an extension of the Amy Gillett Rail Trail as a Priority Project


Stage 3 of the Adelaide Hills Amy Gillet Rail Trail Opening

(Posted: 04/05/14)

The next 7km section of the rail trail between Charleston and Mt Torrens will be officially opened on Tuesday 13th May 2014


Adelaide Hills Rail Trail Link Open

(Posted: 17/06/12)

The gap between the two existing sections of the Adelaide Hills Rail Trail completed and construction of the next section to start. More...

Amy Gillett Rail Trail (Stage 1) Official Opening (SA)

(Posted: 20/01/10)

The Amy Gillett Rail Trail (Stage 1) Official Opening will be held on Saturday 23 Jan.


Funding for the Adelaide Hills Rail Trail Announced

(Posted: 28/01/09)

The South Australian state government has announced $1 million in funding to build the first stage of this rail trail.


Adelaide Hills Rail Trail (SA) Committee Formation Meeting

(Posted: 17/11/07)

The first AGM for this committee supporting the development of this rail trail will be held on Monday 19th November at Balhannah. More...