Replica of original building at Naroghid station site. (2013)
The trail is generally known as the Camperdown to Timboon Rail Trail. A new name, Crater to Coast, is also used to recognise the trail's start on the open volcanic plains of Corangamite and potential extension to the coast at Port Campbell.
A major upgrade of the trail has been made possible by significant funding from BHP Billiton and Curdies River Bridge was restored with funding from DSE and Heritage Victoria.
Eventually the trail may be extended 18km on a road side path to the Port Campbell National Park and on to Princetown joining the Great Ocean Walk.
The Timboon Railway Shed Distillery occupies the original Timboon goods shed and distils an assortment of spirits including: single malt whisky, vodka (with vanilla bean), coffee cream, strawberry schnapps and lemon liqueur. They serve great food and pride themselves on local produce. For example, Timboon honey, cheese, strawberries, ice cream, handmade chocolates and other regional produce including Prickly Moses and Red Duck beers.
The Red Duck Provedore is located at the beginning of the trail in Camperdown and offers light meals and tastings of their award winning range of beers.
Camperdown - An on-road route is signposted from the railway station to the start of the trail on Naroghid Rd, which is the current start of the trail. There is a shelter, picnic facility and trail maps available about 1 km from the start of this section.
Cobden - a good starting point is McKenzie Street near the Technical School. To follow the trail north, travel through the golf course and on towards Naroghid. To head south, follow the sign posts in front of the Fire Shed, then west along the walking /riding track, which runs north for 20m before the sign posts direct you to the left onto the trail beside the Landmark Store. Follow the trail and be prepared for several major road crossings.
Glenfyne - Parking is available opposite the Glenfyne Hall at the station site. There is also a picnic and BBQ area and trail maps available.
Curdies River - park near the old platform on the southern side of the bridge. There is a shelter and trail maps are available.
Timboon - the trail begins north of the station site where the Timboon Railway Shed Distillery occupies the original Timboon goods shed.
Camperdown to Naroghid Rd (approx. 11km)
This section is on road.
The route marked from Camperdown station to the start of the rail trail on Narighid Rd is sign posted but not an easy ride. The alternative route means some time on the main Camperdown to Cobden road with no shoulder and it has no sign posts. Naroghid Road is the current start of the trail..
Naroghid Rd to Cobden (7km)
From the Naroghid Rd entrance, the rail trail proper heads south through scenic farmland into Cobden. It bisects the Cobden golf course linking with the Cobden bike trail via McKenzie St, Neylon St to Grayland Rd. The trail recommences on the north side of the farm supplies store.
Cobden to Glenfyne (11km)
The trail runs beside the Cobden – Warrnambool Rd for most of this section, crossing the road a couple of times.
Glenfyne to Merretts Rd (2km)
As you leave the Glenfyne siding area, you will cross the Cobden – Warrnambool Rd to the Glenfyne Hall, where you will find BBQ facilities and water available.
Merretts Rd to Curdies River trestle bridge (4km)
This section is a scenic walk/ride through dense bushland and still has the rails and sleepers of the original track, though some of the sleepers are now covered with Tuff (volcanic ash). There are 5 by-pass bridges built across Limestone Creek in this section and the trail is narrow and muddy in parts, especially after heavy rain. Some people may prefer to walk this section. It is a pretty walk/ride through dense bushland.
This section is only suitable for walking or mountain bikes and is difficult after heavy rain
Curdies River trestle bridge to Timboon (5km)
This section passes gently uphill through bush and farmland to Timboon. The Curdies River pile (trestle) bridge has been restored and it is a joy to ride over. From the bridge, this 5km section passes through bush and farmland to Timboon.
There are shops and cafes for provisions and the famous Timboon cheese factory is not far away. A boutique whiskey distillery has be established in the old goods shed at Timboon, which is the only one of its kind in Victoria. Meals are available as well.
The railway to Timboon was opened in April 1892 after three years of construction. It carried timber, lime, and later farm produce (hops and apples) as well as passengers. Eighteen saw mills operated in the area processing thousands of tons of timber each year. There were also lime works in the area.
Many original features remain along the line, including brick culverts and remnants of the 38 bridges. The Curdies River pile (trestle) bridge has been restored and is listed with Heritage Victoria.
The section from Merretts Rd south to Curdie has very high conservation values. The giant yellow-bellied-glider possum, white goshawks and powerful owls live here. Wallabies, kangaroos and koalas are commonly seen along the trail. Rare plants, including Lime Ferns, are also a highlight of the trail.