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East Gippsland Rail Trail - Trail Description



East Gippsland Rail Trail

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Type: Rail trail
Location: East Gippsland, 280km from Melbourne
Start/end: Bairnsdale to Newmeralla (near Orbost)
Status: Open
Length open: 94km
Surface: Coarse gravel, Fine gravel, Sealed
Public transport: Train, Coach
Features: tourist
Contact Region: Gippsland, Victoria
Beside the long bridge into Orbost (Alex Thompson)
Beside the long bridge into Orbost (Alex Thompson)
Suitable for walking Suitable for cycling mountain bikes Suitable for cycling touring hybrid bikes Suitable for horse riding



BUSHFIRE UPDATE - EAST GIPPSLAND RAIL TRAIL IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS. The short burnt section has now been inspected for dangerous burnt trees and is now READY TO RIDE!!

  • A long rail trail, which passes through a variety of forest and farmland
  • Ideal for multi-day tour or shorter day trips
  • Lots of huge old timber bridges, railway cuttings and embankments
  • Some low level diversions around bridges from Bruthen on are quite steep.
  • Occasional views of the Gippsland Lakes
  • Rich variety of birds and other wildlife
  • Small towns and villages providing meals and accommodation options
  • Option to divert onto the Gippsland Lakes Discovery Trail to Lakes Entrance

Support Services

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Rail Trail services including bike hire, return transport, luggage transfers and accommodation




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Explore the rail trail at your own pace every day of the year. Trek hybrids (adults and children), baby buggies, tagalongs, tandem. E bikes for adults. Our Range of Options:  Fully Supported tours with everything included on single or multiple rail trails; Bike/pannier hire multi day.




Access Points

  • Bairnsdale - Howett Park on the eastern edge of town
  • Nicholson - from Sarsfield Rd
  • Bruthen - Access via pedestrian bridge on east side of Great Alpine Way
  • Nowa Nowa - west side of Kingston St, or east side of the Boggy Ck
  • Newmeralla - at Burns Rd on the edge of the Snowy River flats
  • Orbost - from Forest Park

Bairnsdale to Nicholson (8km)

This section of the trail is fully sealed, and features a fully restored trestle bridge across the Nicholson River.

  • A steep trail on the west side gives access to the shops and picnic areas at Nicholson.
  • Take in the lake views and note the regenerated bushland beside the trail

Nicholson to Bruthen (20km)

The trail surface becomes hard packed gravel from Nicholson.  Features of the section include several large embankments after Stevensons Rd, and views of Slaughterhouse Creek Valley at Bumberrah.

  • Cross Dirty Hollow Creek via low level bypass
  • Take care crossing Omeo highway at Wiseleigh
  • Access to Bruthen township via sidetrack to the right, before a tunnel and then use restored pedestrian bridge

Bruthen to Nowa Nowa (30km)

A long section of trail through shady forest, with a steady climb to Colquhoun.  The surface is hard packed gravel, although it maybe sandy in some sections.

  • In the Colquhoun Forest, another trail, the Gippsland Lakes Discovery Trail provides a connection to Lakes Entrance.
  • See the impressive Stony Creek Trestle bridge about 5km before you reach Nowa Nowa
  • The trail uses a low level bypass at Stony Creek

Nowa Nowa to Orbost (38km)

This is the longest section of the trail, and there are no towns or villages between.  Please ensure you have food and water before you leave Nowa Nowa.

  • The 36km Nowa Nowa to Newmerella (western side of Snowy River near Orbost) section opened in January 2006
  • The surface is fine hard compacted gravel that is easy riding on a hybrid bike
  • The trail is wide enough for three bikes except in a few sections where the camber seems a bit excessive
  • The trail has quite a lot of shade making summer riding quite pleasant.
  • There are three major wooden trestle bridges in the section which have had to have low level diversions.
  • This gives a good view of the bridges but the approaches are quite steep, particularly at the largest middle bridge
  • At Nowa Nowa the new trail connects to the existing section via a path onto the Princes Hwy which crosses Boggy River
  • There is plenty of parking on the old station site
  • Visitors should note that the Bruthen to Nowa Nowa Rd has been turned into the Princes Hwy so some major roadworks has occurred at Nowa Nowa. A new pedestrian/cycle bridge is also planned which will eliminate the diversion onto the highway.
  • At Newmerella the access point is at Burn Rd
  • Coming from Nowa Nowa, Burn Rd is on the left as the Princes Hwy starts to descend to the river flats
  • It is about 2km short of the original terminus of the line, which never actually crossed the Snowy river into Orbost. At this stage the committee do not have any plans to reopen this section which is mostly wooden trestle bridges crossing the river flats.

For more information on this trail see the book Rail Trails of Victoria and South Australia.

Background Information

The railway came to Bairnsdale in 1888, but didn't reach Orbost until 1916, which was almost the end of Victoria's railway building period.  This railway was notable for it's many long trestle bridges.  The Mundiac Creek trestle was destroyed by bushfires in 1980.  The Stony Creek trestle was the site of a derailment in 1964, when 4 goods trucks fell into the creek.  The line was finally closed in 1987.


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 Support Services and Attractions


Many people ask about accommodation on Gippsland rail trails because they are so long and often demand multi-day travelling. Unfortunately maintaining lists of accommodation near rail trails is beyond the scope of the volunteer capacity of Rail Trails Australia. There are many other resources available for finding accommodation of all kinds in all places. When searching, simply use keywords including the towns through which your chosen rail trail passes, and you should find plenty of options

December 2019

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20 May , 2021 by Flossy

Just got home from the Nowa Nowa to Orbost section. It was about 40km (2-2.5 hours). So we left at 2:30pm, silly us. First off, the country side is so beautiful. I'd rather ride through bush than paddocks. But the trail didn't work well for us [this time]. There were 3 trees that had fallen....big trees that we had to walk into some bush to get around (with bikes, pannier and heavy cameras). I assumed we'd do between 15-20kms per hour. Most of the time we went much slower as the trail was quite pebbly (read slippery), we were all amazed we didn't get a puncture. The sun dipped around 5pm, and we lost all light around 5.20pm, and had to ride about 12kms in pitched darkness, we had additional lights but a kick arse torch in the pannier which was very helpful, but I must remember to take some tape next time. [But it was a cloudless night and the stars were amazing). We got to Orbost about 6:20pm. Checked in to where we were staying and were advised we had better hop to get dinner as the town closes by 8. We had booked at the pub, which worked well, and the beer was golden. The return to Nowa Nowa .....well......we tried to use some close by small roads to miss some of the trail, which would have been easier to navigate on a computer screen than a phone (sigh). Some beautiful wild flowers and mushrooms could be seen on the water breaks, and the sun stayed out the whole time. All riders we in the Astra 2a group (a comment for the times) and on electric bikes (giant quicke plus some other one which I'm not sure of the name). I am writing this the day after I got back, and comments from the other two riders are a real sense of accomplishment and it will be a good memory. We didn't pass any other riders the way there or back, but appeared to have connectivity the whole time (only saying that for others). Who ever put together that Cyclewayz app, thank you, it's the first time I've used it on a trail and was handy when you needed to know how much longer this hill was going to last).

26 April , 2021 by Nbrx

Rode the Bairnsdale to Nowa Nowa section of the trail, which wax well maintained and very beautiful. We only saw 2 other cyclists all day. A great day out.

13 March , 2021 by smithy1000

Well l have just been on the rail in about 5 years, l road from Bairnsdale To Bruthen and just about 5 km beyond, l have to say in parts it has improved like at the start the crumbling sealed path had been reworked and a nice solid bitumen surface then gave way to a sort of loose stone surface stuck to the ground covered the path until it became unpaved surface again around 10 km out, l thought this was going to be better than last time, but l was wrong again there are a number of patches of ground in which there has been no rework or resurfacing so that there was no big ruts in the ground, but there were.! l really think do the maintenance people actually look at them and think to themselves, "hey maybe we should find a better fix to this" l do not think they do. l found still that minor if any at all work on the section heading into Bruthen has been don, again the local Shire and the M.P.s both local and national could draw on funds from the Bushfire recovery fund and make some significant improvements to this trail, like having it properly sealed like the Murry to Mountains trail is?!. l mean come on, people, let's get this trail the treatment it deserves, then you will have a much better trail, happier riders more riders more employment to the local area more vital income as well, this trail has so much potential if only clear heads and willing politicians put their collective effort into making this the premier rail trail in Victoria that title goes to the Wangaratta Bright one hands down at the moment . Get those old rail bridges up and use them to convey cyclists across them instead of having to go down a steep hill then back up again. l gave it a rating of 2 but there is so much room for improvements on this trail that a 5 star ranking could be given..

28 December , 2020 by Fraser Saunder

Honestly people need to harden up and realise that this is a lengthy rail trail through undulating bushland so it won't be as smooth as butter, rather a bit bumpy which just adds character. This is a great trail for all and is well signposted with distance to next station. Get off your high horse and acknowledge that this is a beautiful trail in the countryside of renowned East Gippsland.

13 December , 2020 by Jommy

This is a 5 star ride not a 3. Enjoy people.

13 December , 2020 by Jommy

After 35 years of coming to Lakes Entrance, taking up bike riding has been a salvation in my life. I have seen the Rail Trail for so many years and have really not taken ant notice of it. I decided last month to try the rail trail from Bairnsdale to Buthen and back. What an experience. 64klms there and back. Stopping in Buthen at the pub for a few well earned frothies. A wonderful pedal through some amazing bushland and scenery. Quite deceiving in hilly climbs on the way back and found it exhausting getting back to the car. Well sign posted and a couple of stop offs on the way. Plenty of wildlife and most people are really friendly on the track. Be sure to stop at the Nicholson bridge for photos. Well done to all that look after the trail. An amazing experience.

01 July , 2020 by RobertI

ISO June 2020 I rode three days from Bairnsdale and was very impressed with the distance signs along the trail and the roofed shelters. In Orbost I cycled on to Marlo on the coast, the road is really narrow and dangerous so perhaps consider the Vline bus as they will take bikes. I heard Parks Vic was intending the build a bike path from Marlow to Cape Conran. On returning I took the side trip Gippsland Discovery Trail a wonderful Rail Trail but with some ridiculously steep hills to come back up.

17 December , 2019 by

25/27 My challenge in 2019 is to ride every rail trail in Victoria, and this was the one I have been most worried about all year because of the distance from home, it's overall length and some of the reviews on this site. I tackled the 1st 31km from Bairnsdale to Bruthen (where we were camping for 2 nights) after doing the Gippsland Lakes Trail on the Friday. That left me 'only' 68kms to finish off the next day. Full credit to the volunteer committee for their work on this RT. Signage is easily the best in Victoria, I loved the fact they all showed the distance between towns. The 1st 8kms to Nicholson had recently been resealed, but I have to admit I prefer nice hard-packed gravel to bitumen on railtrails, each to their own. The 39km section from Nowa Nowa to Orbost wasn't easy, but certainly wasn't as bad as some of the reviews here. Yes there were some quite stony parts were you had to be careful, but it was hardly treacherous. MTBs and hybrids only though, especially on this section. There are plenty of nice rest stops along the way, often in picturesque spots. Some wonderful views of old trestle bridges that are absolutely stunning, even if you had to dismount a few times to get through their steep gullies. The bushfires were close enough to create hazy conditions but the wind was blowing the fires away from where I was, and I saw plenty of wildlife along the way which is always pleasant. 25 down, and 2 trails to go to complete my challenge.You can follow all my railtrail rides on FB Warwick Duncan - The 2nd Chance Man or Insta @warwick_rides

02 November , 2019 by

Reporting back after my previous comment in July 2018. We rode this track again last weekend and it has new signage and the trail is much improved. Thank you to all the volunteers for all the work that has been done. We rode from Bairnsdale to Nowa Nowa again. Will try the Orbost section next and keep riding it. A very enjoyable ride. Probably still not good for skinny tyres, still a few stony spots, but otherwise most people and families should now be able to ride it. Thanks again.

08 April , 2019 by Pedalpower

The only words to describe this goat track are cruel, treacherous, and brutal. The track is noted as sealed between Bairnsdale and Nicholson.... the bitumen is deteriorating to make the ride bumpy and rough. The track then bounces and climbs through the Colquhoun Forest with a lot of tree debris on the track towards Nowa Nowa. We can recommend the Nowa Nowa Tavern for overnight accommodation (there's not a lot more to the town). The 40 klm journey to Orbost was the toughest and relentless riding we have ever encountered. The track is strewn with loose river rocks which were slippery and lumpy. No coffee shops or breaks on this segment! There are signs all along the way stating that the only vehicles allowed on the track are maintenance vehicles - there hasn't been one sighted for many years. Could not possibly recommend this ride to anyone.

03 January , 2019 by Leefull

My partner and I rode this over Christmas period for 3 days and the trail from Bairnsdale to Nowa Nowa is great. We stopped in Nowa Nowa 2 nights and the caravan park there is a good rest spot by the river. We rode Nowa Nowa to Orbost and back and the track is in shocking condition. We are experienced riders and found this challenging due to the surface being of big rocks and the constant vibration was exhausting. We got 2 pinch flats. They need to seriously upgrade that section.

09 July , 2018 by

We have ridden this trail from Bairnsdale to Nowa Nowa. From Bairnsdale to Bruthen, it is a great trail with some shrubbery growing on the trail in only some places. From Bruthen onwards, the trail is much worse and not maintained well, if at all. More like an abandoned vehicle track with shrubbery invading the trail. Also very stony with lots of sizeable rocks on the trail in many places. from reports it gets even worse from Nowa Nowa to Orbost, so we turned around. A real pity because the trail goes past beautiful forests and bushland. Not recommended for skinny tyres, families or recumbent trikes.

02 February , 2018 by davnrob

Rode from Orbost to Simpsons Ck Rd (28km return) with a deviation to Grandview lookout. Road surface vey good as long as you are not on skiny tyres. Pleasant ride with lots of shade from trees beside the track . Great views over Snowy River floodplain bridges (3km west of Orbost) from lookout.

29 September , 2017 by Plummy

We rode this rail trail from Bairnsdale to Orbost over 3 days. I was hauling my 4yr old son on a trail gator, and also a double chariot trailer with our 2 yr old twins. My wife hauled a (largely) empty single trailer which our 4yr used for rest of when it was raining on the first day. We stayed in Bairnsdale the night before at the Big4 caravan park (which we hear is about to close). It was perfectly fine to stay at, and was reasonably straight forward in getting to the rail trail. It did require a 400m ride along the highway, but other than that was not too bad. I dropped a car at Bruthen earlier in the morning and rode back. It was showering on and off but the trail was still in very good condition. The first day's ride was excellent. Great scenery and well graded. We stayed at Bruthen campground and it was probably one of the best we've stayed at. Beautifully kept and unique. The area around Bruthen is gorgeous and the town has a great feel to it. The next morning we headed off towards Nowa Nowa. We did a car drop early again, but with my Mum's camper van this time. It was perfect, as she would meet us for lunch along the way. The second day starts out with a climb and the quality of the trail was still very good for a gravel trail. I would describe this rail trail as more of a bush rail trail. We were hauling trailers and never had any real issues. This part of the trail spends most of the time in forest which was in contrast to day 1. Stoney Creek bridge is very impressive, but the grades down into the low level bypass and back out again are a lot steeper and required some walking with loaded trailers. Without the trailers, it is rideable. We stayed at Mingling waters in their Lakeside Cottage. It was exactly what we needed, enough room for the 5 of us (including 2 protects) and a lot of space for the kids to run around. The owners are absolutely lovely and our kids played with theirs for most of the afternoon an following morning. The burgers at the cafe there are absolutely sublime! The next day was easily the hardest. There had been some high winds a few days previous and there was a lot of branches and debris on the trail, as well as the occasional tree. The grades are more variable as there are more low level passes and also some sections of cutting that have been bypassed (requiring more climbing and defending) due to the risk of erosion. It's not necessarily worse, just a bit more work. Probably almost double the elevation gain of the previous day. Most of the day was also spent in forest which is not as interesting, but after the second crossing of Joiners road, the trail heads downhill and into beautiful country as the trail cuts across the hillside and onto the flats that lead into Orbost. Highly recommend finishing in Orbost and not at Burn Road. We ended up driving home (Jindabyne) that afternoon/evening, but would probably recommend staying in Orbost the night. All up, a great trail that we all thoroughly enjoyed. The quality of the trail was fine and we had no real issues besides the branch (and tree) fall.

22 February , 2017 by Scottie

Just did the trail in a single day from Bairnsdale, then rode onto Marlo from Orbost to stay at the hotel I'd booked there. I'm a roadie so used to riding long distances. I've been on Warburton trail with my roadbike countless times with 28mm tyres inflated to 70 psi, but this trail was much more challenging especially from Nowa Nowa to Orbost. MTB or CX might be the go. Another note of caution is that large parts of this trail is a long way away from any townships or main roads, so water, food, puncture repair and mechanical issues should be considered. I kept getting twigs caught in the rear derailleur, which could have snapped it if I was unlucky. If you're a cycling novice you should go with someone with a bit more experience, with right equipment and preparation.

09 November , 2016 by pageal

On 28-31 Oct 2016, I rode the trail with 2 others for 3d/2 nights. I drove to Bairnsdale and my 2 mates caught the train, which carried 6 bikes/cyclists alright. It was a good ride that I've wanted to do for a couple of months, but held back on due to 2-3mo of Tasman Sea lows dumping rain in Gippsland. There is actually a part-time chap who drives the trail and keeps it clear, and we were impressed with how well maintained it was. It's more of an adventure out-bush trail, not a Warby trail. Although, we ran into folks on folding compact bikes, a tandem and families with kids on bikes; so it offers diverse capabilities in different places. The creeks and rivers weren't overly full, but there were billabongs in places. We'd been warned to bring Aeorguard for the mossies, which got used daily. Sat, we carried panniers for 60km Bairnsdle to Nowa Nowa, where we stayed in a caravan park for 2 nights. The pub did us tea for 2 nights (normally closed sundays), and it was affordable and good tucker. Mingling Waters Cafe opens at 6am, and had interesting fare and good coffee. On Sunday's 40km ride to Orbost (& 40km return): we had 1 tree to climb over out-bound; it got windy, and we had to stop for 6-8 trees/branches across the track coming back (half of which were small enough for us to remediate). The trail also got down to single track for a few km. On Monday morning, the trail west from Nowa Nowa got a bit heavy for about 20km after some night rain. When the trail dried out, the 15-20kn headwind kicked in. Can't complain, as there was tree cover and hills to give a degree of shelter. We rode the 200km Bairnsdale to Orbost/return in 3 days, and thoroughly enjoyed it. I'd say hybrid and mountan bikes with 35mm and larger tyres are the go, and road bikes (23-28mm tyres) would struggle as there are sand and gravel bits to take down the unwary. We panniered 60km in/out, and rode Orbost/return 80km without baggage on Sunday for lunch. There were some big hill climbs - around 7km length, but not too steep (RT gradient). Bruthen had the micro-brewery (good reports from a couple of riders), 2-3 take-away shops and a bakey, and is well placed as a coffee stop. We met a lady NSW rider here (self-supported camping) aiming to ride the 100km Bairnsdale-Orbost leg in one day, who said there's nothing like Victoria's rail trail network in NSW. She was really enjoying herself. I had aggresuve 40mm Schwalbe Mondial touring tyres (on a 700c rigid bike) which gave me great control, and I could light up and hammer the track at 35kmh when conditions allowed. Balancing your gear on the bike is important, and one mate went down on a straight stretch when his front tyre lost grip due to the load aft (26”mtb with racks); which also took down our second rider (with 'street tread' 35mm tyres). A lighter load, or a frame or handlebar bag might have helped with load distribution. Two 800ml bidons (or equivalent) strongly recommended, along with a multi-tool and tyre repair capability. It was long, sometimes hard, and a lot of fun. Enjoy!

05 October , 2016 by Rail Trail Reflections

I had only 4 hours to ride so I didn’t rush. A leisurely breakfast was had before driving out to Nowa Nowa to start the first overnight bike ride that I’d ever done. I was tackling the Nowa Nowa to Orbost section of the Bairnsdale rail trail, having previously knocked off the first section of the ride with Dad perhaps 10 years earlier. I started from the trestle bridge near Nowa Nowa and was surprised to find another car there…heaven forbid! It was school holidays I guess. They quickly left anyway and I was on my own…just me and the bush. My rig was simple – two paniers filled with camping gear and food. I needed a bit more space so overflowed to a small pack on my back. The one worry I had was that a clip was broken on one panier and I needed a makeshift measure to hold it to the bike – a shoelace proved to do the job sufficiently…I took off along the slightly bumpy gravel and it held. Through the bush I went, the track was flat, birds chirped and I cruised…I had plenty of time. The gravel didn’t facilitate the fastest rolling pace but the lack of hills perhaps balanced this out in terms of distance covered. After a bit over an hour I was ready for a break and a snack. I came to a sign…it was one I had seen before…10 years ago…I had ridden the wrong way! What a goose. I had but one job…Get on the rail trail and follow it to Orbost. Well I was on the rail trail but I was following it back to Bairnsdale! After taking some time to compose myself, I was back on my bike heading in the other direction…this time with a bit more urgency. I still hadn’t started my planned ride yet for the day and the sun would set at about 6pm. By the time I arrived back at the bridge and had another quick rest, it had been 2 hours since I started and it was after 1pm…off I went…with a sufficient warm-up definitely under my belt. In all this action I hadn’t seen another cyclist or user of the track…after 4km I rolled into Nowa Nowa to glimpse the only other cyclist of the day. He was at a rest stop and looked like he was living on his bike…he had a trailer overflowing with gear and sported a scruffy beard. We gave each other a nod and I carried on...back into the wilderness…there was to be no further civilisation for 36km. Despite the lack of other humans or perhaps because of it, the wildlife was prolific. In a 60 second interval I witnessed a wallaby/kangaroo, rabbit, wombat and echidna all within 100m of each other. I slowed down and said hello. It had rained heavily in the preceding week and any water source that I passed was flowing strongly. At 2 points I came to unpassable water over the track and trekked my bike through the bush to the road rather than wade through it. I stopped for a late lunch at a 2nd trestle bridge over a country road. A shelter had kindly been provided at the crest of the hill and I lunched there, looking down on green paddocks filled with cows. A couple of trucks revved past, other than that it was just me, my billy and the cows. Back on track for what seemed like an age, signs of civilisation increased as I neared Orbost. I was tuckered out, unconditioned to this much riding. On the flats leading into Orbost I was attacked! It was swooping season and a magpie dove down at me. My tactic of raising my arm into the air kept him hovering above me rather than repeatedly diving. After about 500m, well past his tree, he let me be…my heart was pumping…the magpie had drawn me from my weary state. The last of the 3 trestle bridges was the largest, spanning across the farmlands on the west of the Snowy River – the largest trestle bridge in Victoria. Crossing the Snowy, I was in awe of its size. It was visibly flowing, meeting the sea only a short few kilometres further on at the tiny hamlet of Marlo after having come 350km from the New South Wales Alps. It was swollen like the other waterways that I’d seen. I checked into the Orbost Caravan park for the very reasonable rate of $20 and set up camp. I wandered up to the pub to watch the footy with the local farmers and have a pot of beer for $4.20. Curiously I was asked for ID…I’m 31 years old. Reflecting on the ride, I was well content. It was an easy and relaxing saunter surrounded by nature and in solitude. Kudos to those involved in its inception and ongoing maintenance. Until next time...over and out!

10 December , 2015 by davroy

A group of four rode the trail from Orbost to Bairnsdale over three days Melbourne Cup weekend. Weather was ok, just a little rain on the first day from Orbost to Nowa Nowa. We were staying in Lakes Entrance and just did car shuffles each day. Second day was Nowa Nowa to Bruthen, then us two boys were dropped off at the top of the Mississippi Trail and we rode it back to Lakes whilst the ladies drove the cars. Day three was the boys riding from Bruthen to Bairnsdale whilst the ladies shopped. All in all, a wonderful weekend's riding on a fantastic track. I agree with the others, the section between Nowa Nowa and Orbost is not as good as the other parts, but it was perfectly acceptable. The sealed section from Nicholson was rather bumpy, I preferred the gravel track!

10 May , 2015 by cascho

I rode this trail on the weekend (2nd and 3rd of May 2015). This trail, to me, has two very different parts. The section between Bairnsdale and Nowa Nowa is fantastic, past Nowa Nowa to Orbost is not so good. The trail is sealed between Bairnsdale and Nicholson, though cracking in a lot of places, while it is good compact gravel on to Bruthen and then to Nowa Nowa, past Nowa Nowa the track surface has deteriorated – the track is littered with large stones and tree debris, making it difficult to ride. I found the ride up to Bruthen the best part, with fantastic countryside and good views of the surroundings. I really recommend this section as the trail as it is not that hard, and the trail through Bruthen is well integrated with the town. Past Bruthen you begin to climb to the Gippsland Lakes trail turn-off, then downhill into Nowa Nowa. This section is more secluded but easy going. Past Nowa Nowa, I found very hard because of the trail surface – though there is enough interest in the surrounding bush not to make it boring. One of the biggest problems I had with this trail was the lack of signage – while I’m not a fan of posts every kilometre, there wasn’t much signage to tell you how far you were from the next town, so made judging timing hard. Past Nowa Nowa, the signs at the road crossings have been weathered away – so there was no clear indicator of how far to go. I found the trestle bridges at Wairewa Road and Stony Creek the most impressive of all the bridges I have seen on any trail. It is a good weekend trip.

11 March , 2015 by davnrob

Rode from Nowa Nowa west to the historic timber bridge at Stoney Creek (approx 6km). Easy ride out to the bridge, good views of the bridge and then a great coast most of the way back. Track in good condition with the Nowa Nowa shop a great great place to finish for a drink or a feed.

04 October , 2014 by Philflem

Our favourite Sunday ride! My wife and I regularly ride from Nicholson to Bruthen for coffee/lunch and back again on a Sunday. This part of the trail is about 42 km there and back, a very comfortable ride through gently undulating hills and it is well shaded. Bruthen has some great eateries as well. We are often surprised that we have the track to ourselves and wonder why more locals don't use it more?

18 April , 2014 by jeff Rigby

Further to my last post As previously mentioned I camped in Bruthen and Orbost. I started from Orbost at about 1.30 having left my car at the caravan park not far from the beginning of the trail, arriving at Bruthen at about 4pm. I mention this because without a doubt, the Bruthen Caravan Park is the nicest one I have ever seen, well situated close by the river with a very good manager who maintains the place beautifully. The next day I stopped at Nowa Nowa for morning tea, again a great place to stop and by about 4pm I had arrived at Orbost which also has a good caravan park close to town. The descent into the valley opposite Orbost is marvellous and the ensuing ride past the very long trestle bridge stretching across the river flats is fascinating. I mentioned Marlo before, 11 kms from Orbost; it is a beautiful little town with some nice bike paths with lovely views of the mouth of the Snowy. Importantly there is a good pub with nice sea food which makes it an ideal side trip from Orbost.….. It was a lovely trip and while a fully loaded bike is heavy, I always think it is more comfortable with the weight tending to make for a smoother ride. It is certainly a very cheap way to travel and there is also more flexibility with the possibility at times of camping off the trail.

13 April , 2014 by jeff Rigby

I rode this trail in October 2012, Bairnsdale to Orbost and return, camping at Bruthen and then Orbost. I then went out to Marlo at the mouth of the Snowy River which, to my mind was the high point of the trip, 22kms return, easy riding. I suggest that this side trip should be mentioned in the trail description. On return, I rode the whole way back to Bairnsdale in a day as the weather looked like breaking up, ( which it did) The various trestle bridges were wonderful, especially the huge one running over the river flats to Orbost. One would hope that something could be done to ensure its survival as it must be the longest in the country. I did find the section of the trail after Nowa Nowa became rather rough and on my return, I kept to the highway to Nowa Nowa, but as someone has previously said, the weather had obviously knocked the trail around. Still, perhaps it would be wise to give it a bit of extra maintenance, perhaps it has received some by now. As always, this New South Welshman is astonished at the way the Victorians have set these trails up. It is certainly a more civilised place than NSW!! Bike riders are regarded as dangerous Greenie lunatics in my state.

11 July , 2012 by nealrubin

I came down from Canberra to do the EGRT last weekend. Had a fabulous time. Everything was arranged by liz of Snowy River Cycling. I picked up my bike, great selection Liz, a nice Trek with soft front option and hard tail. Stayed at the Grand Terminus hotel in Bairnsdale, made to feel very welcome. Started out at first light in -2 degrees. Beautiful morning. My first thought was that you can tell its an old trail that has been used many times. The surface is first class and well bedded down. Credit to the local councils and committees that do the maintanence. I thought that the ride was going to be very flat but there are some nice undulations in the trail. I stopped at a cafe in Bruthen for breakfast. They did a great job and you can tell that they love people riding their trail. Took off again and this section of the trail is probably the best, great surface again and some good cuttings. And then the highlight of the whole trail. I came flying around a gentle right bend and as it opened up I saw the most amazing sight. It took my breath away. The trestle bridge is the best example of early 1900's wooden infrastructure that I have seen. I have to admit that up until that point I was disappointed with the amount of railway infrastructrure on the trail. This fixed that. I spent quite a bit of time walking around the bridge and reading great interruptive signage, well done again. When I finally got going again I made it to Nowa Nowa for the night. Have to admit that finding where the trail started again was tricky. I like to do this when I get into town because I leave at first light. I stayed at the Mingling Waters Park and they loved having me there, thank you Mike. Dinner at the pub, thank you girls for a most unexpected vegetarian dinner, not what I expected. First light saw me back on the trail. One of the reason why I love rail trails is that if you get on them before the sun gets up you get to see the beauty of first light hitting the trees, I was even luckier to be in a granite cutting when it did and the colours were fabulous. This short 40km section has a rough surface which I was disappointed in but I understand the issues they have had with weather lately so thats ok. Watch out for herds of kangaroo coming across the trail at this spot and at this time of day. It was great to ride beside them but having a 200kg roo come straight across your path when you are doing 30kph yourself is interesting. Got into Orbost a couple of hours after setting out. More trestle highlights on this part of the trail, finished with the 937m long flood plain trestle as you go into Orbost. Locals were very friendly when I showed up all smelly and wanted some breakfast. Thank you to the travel agency who changed my bus and train bookings and to Kay at her cafe for the most enjoyable breakfast. Overall, fabulous experience, great trail. Well done to all the locals who make it happen. Neal

15 March , 2012 by pageal

I rode 200km Barinsdale to Orbost and return over 3 days (10-12 Mar '12) with a YHA group of 6, with 2 nights spent in Nowa Nowa. It had rained 57mm in Nowa Nowa on the Thrs, and we set off on Sat. The rivers and creeks were swollen and lots of flooded paddocks around. The trail was excellent, had drained well in 36hrs and we had little trouble. One could get loose sand eroded onto the trail in a few stretches, but we adapted. East of Nowa Nowa we were told there's a couple of level creek crossings, but we got past these without getting our socks wet. The 100km of nearly contiguous bike track is a real treasure. I had a thoroughly great time. My Shogun hybrid XT groupset 27 spd had 38mm front and 35mm rear Schwalbe Cross Pro tyres, and the rig was perfect for this dirt track. A couple with us rode on 28mm cross tyres and did alright, but may have been a bit more cautious when the surface loosened up occasionally. It's fairly sparsely populated, so bring water, sunscreen, multi-tool, tube, tyre repair kit, etc. A few bike families we saw teamed up, and were using cars to let the kids do shorter stretches. There are roads crossing the track at intervals to allow this. There's interesting birdlife, wallabies and kangaroos, and a personal highlight was riding behind 3 emus for 3km at 30km. The countryside is varied, with forest gaining predominance much of the time. Riding in the forest gives good shelter from the wind and probably sun. I loved it. Thanks to the trail volunteers who keep the scrub in check , clear fallen branches and arrest erosion issues. The track is a gem.

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Community-led restoration of the historic timber Snowy River Rail Bridge

(Posted: 30/12/20)

Watching the smoke and steam from the first trains to puff across the newly opened Snowy River Trestle Bridge in 1916, residents of the Orbost district would have found it hard to imagine that more than a century later Victoria’s longest timber rail bridge would be a pedestrian and cycling crossing on the East Gippsland Rail Trail.


Rail trails can help support bushfire affected communities

(Posted: 04/02/20)

It may be a little difficult carrying an #EmptyEsky on your bike, but you can still make a #RoadTripforGood using a rail trail as the foundation for your trip.


East Gippsland Rail Trail Quickly Repaired (VIC)

(Posted: 13/02/11)

Sections damaged by fire due to reopen Feb 19. More...

East Gippsland Fire damage

(Posted: 04/02/11)

Tuesday's (Feb 1-2) fires east of Nowa Nowa has closed the rail trail from Jonson Road to past Partellis Crossing.


Victoria Bike Path Discovery Day 2007

(Posted: 23/01/07)

Bicycle Victoria has organised this day for Sunday 4 March 2007, which includes two rail trails. More...

Caution Regarding Rail Trails in Fire Prone Areas - UPDATE Jan 07

(Posted: 12/12/06)

A reminder that using rail trails in rural environments during our hot, dry summers requires some extra thought and preparation. More...

East Gippsland Rail Trail (Victoria) Extension Officially opened.

(Posted: 31/01/06)

On Saturday January 28th 2006 the 35km extension from Nowa Nowa to Orbost was officially opened More...

East Gippsland Rail Trail (Vic) Extension Funding Approved

(Posted: 24/04/05)

The East Gippsland Rail Trail Committee of Management is preparing to invite tenders for construction works after receiving official confirmation of funding through the Federal Government's Regional Partnerships Program. More...

East Gippsland Rail Trail Ride (Vic)

(Posted: 16/03/05)

Cyclists galore on the Trail weekend of 11th March 2005. More...

Springfest 2003 Bairnsdale - Nowa Nowa, Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 September (Vic)

(Posted: 11/09/03)

A two day bike ride will be held celebrating the East Gippsland Rail Trail. It was hoped that the restored V/Line train service would be operating in time for the weekend however this will not be the case. More...

Riding the East Gippsland Rail Trail Recumbent Style (Vic)

(Posted: 23/07/03)

Andrew Hooker describes a ride along the East Gippsland Rail Trail.


Report on the Bicycling Australia Show (Melbourne)

(Posted: 19/11/02)

The Bicycling Australia Show was held in Melbourne last month. There was a good Rail trails presence at the show.


East Gippsland Rail Trail Annual Ride

(Posted: 19/06/02)

The East Gippsland Rail Trail is having its annual ride/walk/horseride on Saturday 22 June. More...

Gippsland Trail News (Vic)

(Posted: 15/02/01)

Works on the East Gippsland trail are progressing. The spectacular Kilcunda Trestle Bridge is now open for trail users. Developments on the Walhalla Goldfields Rail Trail. More...

Railtrails at the Melbourne Bicycle Show

(Posted: 01/11/00)

iltrails were well represented at the bike show in Melbourne on Sunday 15 October. More...

Victorian Government Funding for Railtrails

(Posted: 29/07/00)

In answer to a question in Victorian Parliament, the Minister for Environment and Conservation stated that funding has not been provided for railtrails in the 2000-01 budget but $975,000 has been provided for two specific railtrail development projects. More...

Victorian Railtrail News Update

(Posted: 02/07/00)

Sealing of the East Gippsland Rail Trail is under way. Progress on the Ballarat Skipton Rail Trail.


Gippsland Railtrails News

(Posted: 17/06/00)

Work continues on the next section of the East Gippsland Rail Trail. Reports from Gippsland Plains, Great Southern and Walhalla Goldfields railtrails. Plans for an Gippsland Rail Trail newsletter. More...

Australian Railtrails News Roundup

(Posted: 15/04/00)

News on railtrail developments in News South Wales, South Australia, Western Australia and Victoria. More...

Bairnsdale to Bruthen Annual Community Ride

(Posted: 19/02/00)

30 km ride on Saturday 25 March.