Overview

Location: Wangaratta, Bright, Rutherglen, Milawa, Beechworth, Myrtleford, Wandiligong
Distance: 100km
Surface: Sealed
Grade: Easy
Open: No seasonal closures
Fees: Free
Wheelchair accessible: Yes

For more information and to download the rail trail map: ridehighcountry.com.au/rail-trails/murray-to-mountains

Rail Trail Victoria High Country

Stretching for over 100km right into the scenic heart of Victoria’s High Country, the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail offers a sealed, off-road cycle path through the beautiful Ovens Valley with its spectacular mountain vistas, bountiful farms, picturesque wineries with welcoming cellar doors and pretty country towns full of great places to eat, drink and sleep.

There are a number of businesses in each destination offering cycle shuttle services, gourmet cycle tours following the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail, bike repairs and bike hire of all kinds, including e-bikes (perfect for those uphill legs!)

The trail through the Ovens Valley is also a spine from which interconnected trails lead from the plains around Wangaratta to the famous holiday destination of Bright as well as to beautiful, historic Beechworth, the gourmet riches of Milawa and the stunning hidden valley of Wandiligong. And with a separate section linking Rutherglen to Wahgunyah on the Murray River, there are plenty of trail options to fit your schedule.

No matter your age or riding ability, the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail offers sections to suit cycling adventurers or casual cyclists and families of all ages and abilities.

Along the old railway line

Easily accessible via V/Line train from Melbourne, Wangaratta is a convenient place to begin. Start from the Old Wangaratta Station in the middle of Apex Park and follow the path taken by the old railway line. First head north to a tunnel under Wangaratta Road. Follow the levee and a brief section beside the road before you arrive at Bowser, the first of the steam-train-themed rest stops.

Take care as you proceed from Bowser through the narrow tunnel under the highway, and don’t miss the sharp right-hand turn on the other side. Once through you are greeted by flat farmland and soon you arrive at the junction at Old Everton station.

Beechworth detour

At Old Everton station you have two options: break away and take the trail uphill to Beechworth; or continue on the main trail through the valley and on towards Bright.

At 800m above the valley floor, the climb to Beechworth is steady going, through beautiful bushland and birdsong. The ride is a decent workout with the reward of a gorgeous town to explore at the summit.

Beechworth is packed with fascinating history, many dining and accommodation options. Spend a night here and walk to one of the excellent places to eat and drink, from high end Hatted fare at The Provenance to gourmet pizza at Bridge Road Brewers.

Myrtleford to Bright

The main trail pushes on through farm and pasture that gives way to the beautiful Stanley State Forest at the crest of Taylors Gap – an impressive cutting in its time – opening up to spectacular views of Mount Buffalo on the descent into the buzzing town of Myrtleford. Discover local history, including the historic tobacco-drying shed and the Big Tree. Myrtleford is the perfect place to stay the night, with plenty of accommodation for every budget and some great places to eat and drink.

From Myrtleford, cross the Great Alpine Road where signposted and continue pedalling through the valley to Porepunkah. If it's a warm day, pause for a dip in the Ovens River.

The valley deepens and as the mountains on either side rise above you, the plateau of Mt Buffalo looms to the west as you arrive in the town of Bright. Stay the night in one of the great accommodation options and enjoy a variety of delightful places to eat and drink.

From Bright follow the extension all the way to the historic gold and orchard town of Wandiligong. Wandi, is the furthest location on the Murray to Mountain Rail Trail, and a great place to explore as its landscape and buildings are certified by the National Trust. It also has one of the High Country’s best little pubs.

With so many stopover options in beautiful villages along the way, it’s easy to tailor your trip. Add on great side trips with easy-to-access trails and well-maintained paths.

Shorter options

Everton – Beechworth – Everton, 32km return
A great out-and-back experience. An adjunct to the main trail, the Everton to Beechworth leg asks you to work hard during a steady climb up from the valley floor through bushland, paddocks and wineries to the scenic and historic town of Beechworth. Spend the night in this famous town and enjoy fine dining at Provenance Restaurant. If you're doing it in a day, grab a takeaway Gum Tree Pie, Fish & Chips from the Ageing Frog or a panini from Project 49 and head to the Chinese Gardens for lunch on the go, then drop the gears to low and cruise downhill right back to Old Everton Station. Mountain bikers shouldn't miss cutting a run on the parallel, purpose-built Flame Trees Mountain Bike Trail on the way down.

Rutherglen to Wahgunyah, 9km one way
Enjoy a leisurely morning ride from Rutherglen to Wahgunyah on the mighty Murray River, passing some of the region's oldest vineyards. At just nine kilometres, the route is the shortest of all the rail trails and part of the Pedal to Produce network. Take some time to visit some of the many cellar doors open for tastings, sales and in some cases, lunch or coffee. The flat terrain also makes it perfect for a jaunt with the kids. So hit the trail, sample local flavours and soak up the abundant sunshine in the never-ending summers of Rutherglen. Be sure to bring your bathers so you can cool off when you reach the Murray River in Wahgunyah.

Wheelchair accessible options

Bright to Porepunkah, 6km one way
Starting in beautiful Bright, make your way along the old railway corridor against the stunning backdrop of Mount Buffalo looming over the valley. Stop for breakfast or lunch at the Rail Trail Cafe and don’t miss the incredible views from Ringer Reef Winery’s cellar door.


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