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Grampians Rail Trail - Trail Description



Grampians Rail Trail

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Type: Rail trail
Location: 233km north west of Melbourne
Start/end: Stawell West to Mt Dryden Rd car park
Status: Partially open
Length open: 11km
Surface: Fine gravel
Terrain: Flat
Best seasons: All
Public transport: Train, Coach, Bus
Features: wineries, tourist
Contact Region: Western Victoria
At Codds Flat Road (2014). Credit: Alex Thompson
At Codds Flat Road (2014). Credit: Alex Thompson
Suitable for walking Suitable for cycling mountain bikes Suitable for cycling touring hybrid bikes



  • This rail line ran from Stawell to a stone quarry at Heatherlie at the base of the Grampians from 1882 to 1949.
  • The quarry supplied stone for many of Melbourne's public buildings including Parliament House and the State Library.
  • The trail is mostly through beautiful bushland.


Start Point.

Stawell West - The trail starts at a small car park on the Grampians Road, 700 metres south of the Western Highway.


From the car park at Stawell West, the trail heads west towards the Grampians with the first 2.5km being on a path south of the original easement.  The rest of the trail (about 9km) travels along the old rail alignment, parrallel to the Grampians Rd, and then Mt Dryden Rd, and close to Lake Lonsdale.  Bridges have been constructed and erected by the students at Stawell Secondary School, and an 800metre boardwalk has also been completed.  The trail continues on to a carpark at Mt Dryden Rd.  Be aware there is a temporary gate across the trail 2km before the end which will be removed

There are no plans to extend the trail to the Heatherlie quarry.

At the Heatherlie quarry, a short section of trail is walkable. A number of quarry buildings are still standing, and there is plenty of interesting mining equipment to explore.

Background Information

For the last few years, Year 9 students from the Stawell Secondary College have been working on an 11km section from near Stawell to Lake Lonsdale Rd.  This will link with quiet dirt roads to provide a route to the popular tourist destination of Halls Gap, avoiding the busy Grampians Rd.

Upon completion it will be managed by the Northern Grampians Shire Council.


Rail Trail manager - John Pye  0432 867 387

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17 December , 2016 by jhaley3180

Visited today. A lovely Saturday afternoon. A nice rail trail to do with the Children. 20km, flat and in generally good repair. It is apparently supposed to be closed, because council can't work out a fence/gate... but you can ride the length easily, two temporary gates to maneuver. Start is approximately 700m towards Halls Gap from the intersection of Western Hwy and Grampians Road. A small car park on the right with some white bollards.

17 October , 2016 by Kaput

Really disappointed by the lack of current communication about this rail trail. On Saturday I looked on this site for an update, checked the North Grampians Shire website and Facebook group. No updates in one and a half years. I sent a message to the shire and asked them to let us know if the trail was opened or closed. As we were staying in Dunkeld, we dropped into the information centre. The lady there had never heard of a rail trail in the Grampians. She tried to ring Halls Gap information, they didn't answer. So we decided to risk it and go for it. On Sunday we drove to Stawell (a 3 hour return trip) to try to find the trail. We could see part of it but there was no signage. We went to Stawell information. They were out of brochures but the lady there told us to go to Federation Park for the trail head. It was raining all day, so in Monday afternoon we returned, but there was no signage, no indication of a trail head. We rang the shire. They advised to cross the road and continue further down. I told the lady who answered my story and asked for the person responsible to return my call (haven't received a call back as yet). We soon found it and enjoyed the 11km immensely. Sad to see others don't seem to be doing it but I can see why! Get your act together North Grampians Shire Council. Get the trail revitalised and we will come! Finalise your negotiations with the sheep farmer! Communicate with Stawell, Halls Gap and Dunkeld information centres! Please facilitate this Thank you

16 January , 2015 by cascho

I rode this trail yesterday (15/1/15) and found it okay but short. The track surface is fine for mountain and hybrid – though gets a bit rough on the western end given that part of the track has seen less use. The main issue with this trail is that it does not have any standout features – there are no great views of the Grampians, or river vistas. The only interesting sites are the wastewater ponds and the cattle farm. I saw no evidence of any washed out sections – the track has been maintained, and well done to the high school students who built the bridges – good job.

15 January , 2013 by Stuart

My wife and I attempted the Stawell section around the middle of 2012 and found it in need of maintenance. We were wondering if it has been repaired after the floods destroyed sections of it?

15 January , 2012 by Bush Blubberman

Rough track. Lost the track at the Heatherlie Quarry end and used a 4WD tack to get onto Pines Rd. The Heatherlie Quarry end is only recommended for the hardy. Rains in late 2011 have damaged the trail at the Stawell end. Some sections have been washed away and a lot of debris lies on the trail. link to GPS tracklog:- alternatively May the road rise with you.

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