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Bike Tours Around Victoria Updates

These updates are available to download as a pdf. here

May 13, 2010
Ride 23 Grand Ridge Road & Latrobe Valley

The Mirboo North – Boolarra Rail Trail, now known as the Grand Ridge Rail Trail, was damaged by fires in 2009 and is mostly closed until two major bridges are repaired. For the latest information see http://www.railtrails.org.au/states/trails.php3?action=trail&trail=12

May 13, 2010
Ride 11: Nagambie Day Ride

There is a new Wetlands Café and Wetlands Walk at Tahbilk Winery. Note that closed shoes are needed for the walk and there’s a $5 charge.

May 13th 2010

As one contributor to the blog has pointed out taking even small numbers of bikes on V/Line trains can be very problematic if you are travelling with the peak flow during peak hours, or on public holidays and other busy times such as Friday and Sunday evenings. It is strongly advised that a D-van be booked if you intend travelling with a group at such times. So long as you indicate that your group will be about 10 this is usually not a problem. Don’t forget to book your seats as well if it is a service for which reservations are required.

Having said that there are some hopeful signs, in the shape of surveys currently being carried out, that suggest that the authorities have finally realised that there is a large and increasing demand for the carriage of bikes on trains. Hopefully we may at least see a booking system for bikes introduced on V/Line trains soon, which would be a great boon for cycle tourists. Perhaps in the more distant future we may even see new trains with more space for bikes.

October 19, 2009
Ride 24: South Gippsland Circuit

The Great Southern Rail Trail is now complete except for a 3km stretch between Koonwarra and Meeniyan. The surface of the completed trail is compacted dirt with a sandy surface. There are now Enviro-Loo toilets at Stony Creek and Buffalo and just before Foster.

October 19, 2009
Ride 8: Bendigo Base Camp

In ‘Bendigo Bushland Trail’ (ride 2) the map on page 65 mentions ‘Swampy Gully Track’, this should actually read ‘Stumpy Gully Track’; the ride instructions on page 68 (paragraph 2) list it correctly.

The Bendigo Bushland Trail was affected by fires in early 2009. Some signs were damaged, however it is still passable.

October 19, 2009
Ride 6: Gold & Spa Country Circuit

The Yarrowee River Trail could be used for the return to Ballarat. Information and maps available at http://www.visitballarat.com.au/

October 19, 2009
Ride 5: Swan Hill Base Camp

Several attractions mentioned are now closed: Annie’s Wine Place, the Rotary Dairy, the Faberge Egg Museum, and Murray Downs homestead. However the Sound and Light at the Pioneer Settlement is excellent. The general store at Lake Boga township now has a coffee machine and a picnic table outside. There’s a good picnic spot just before the bridge at Fish Point. A new 5km off-road path on the NSW side of the lift bridge passes Murray Downs homestead and finishes at a golf resort.

May 13, 2009
Taking Bikes on country Trains and Coaches

Conventional bikes can be carried free on V/Line trains, depending on the availability of space. V/Line has a few different train types.

Space is limited on Sprinter and VLocity trains, arriving in, or departing from Ararat, Ballarat (including Wendouree), Bendigo, Echuca, Geelong (including North Geelong, South Geelong and Marshall), Seymour and Traralgon. Look for the bike symbol appearing on VLocity and Sprinter trains to know which door to enter the train with your bike.

More space for bikes is generally available on long-distance, locomotive-hauled services, arriving in or departing from Bairnsdale, Shepparton, Swan Hill or Warrnambool. If you are travelling with a group it is also possible to book a D-van on these trains. To do so contact the Group Travel Coordinator on 9619 2338 at least a week in advance.

May 13th 2010

As one contributor to the blog has pointed out taking even small numbers of bikes on V/Line trains can be very problematic if you are travelling with the peak flow during peak hours, or on public holidays and other busy times such as Friday and Sunday evenings. It is strongly advised that a D-van be booked if you intend travelling with a group at such times. So long as you indicate that your group will be about 10 this is usually not a problem. Don’t forget to book your seats as well if it is a service for which reservations are required.

Having said that there are some hopeful signs, in the shape of surveys currently being carried out, that suggest that the authorities have finally realised that there is a large and increasing demand for the carriage of bikes on trains. Hopefully we may at least see a booking system for bikes introduced on V/Line trains soon, which would be a great boon for cycle tourists. Perhaps in the more distant future we may even see new trains with more space for bikes.