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  • Jennifer Duncan

A piece of history you can follow

Updated: Feb 15, 2021

For those of us lucky enough to have the opportunity to spend time the Queensland country, you’ll no doubt agree, there’s a wealth of knowledge and understanding of our history to be gained just by getting out there, on foot and exploring.


It’s not an easy adventure. There are maps to follow, essentials to be worn & carried in order to withstand the harsher conditions, that will no doubt have you admire the incredible toughness of early Australian’s. There’s also a sense of always needing to be aware of what’s around in the event that you encounter a representative from Australia’s abundant wildlife, that we well know come in all shapes and sizes! And whilst it’s not the easiest of paths, we also know by now that the most rewarding ones never are. Taking a more philosophical approach to travel in the Queensland outback might see an adventure on foot as a rite of passage- one that we take to understand more of our history and be better informed about all that’s gone before.


And one of those paths becoming increasingly recognised in our part of the world by the travelling tourist is the Kilkevan to Kingaroy Rail Trail. One of many ‘Rail Trails’ that exist throughout Australia, these now defunct railway lines, were once bustling train routes that ferried both people and livestock through the undulating terrain of the countryside.


Nowadays, with only remnants of the actual railway, the track is lined in a surface ranging from course or fine gravel and in some part are even sealed. And this makes for a reliable road in which to plan your next adventure.


Opening officially in 2017, this railway line begins 225km northwest of Brisbane in Kilkevan and runs for 88km. It’s become a popular route for travellers who are either on foot or on a push bike and there are also some parts that allow horses.


The real beauty of the rail trail of course is all the creeks and gulley’s that you’ll pass along the way, the ability to see old towns and with that the hallmarks of our early Australian history.


A highlight for the trip would also have to be the wineries dotted along the way, some of which are award winning and well worth the adventure when there’s a Dusty Hill Shiraz and locally sourced cheese to sustain you towards the days end.


You’ll find the Goomeri Motel on the Rail Trail just as you head into town. With the ability to order home cooked meals to your room as you rest your feet and catch the cool afternoon breeze, you’ll also be sure of a good night’s rest. We’re often told by departing guests that it’s a perfect recovery before the onward journey.


Goomeri Motel Room with a view
Put your feet up after a long day at the Goomeri Motel

Below is a general path to follow with information on what to expect along the way. You can of course join the trail at any point. We recommend travelling at the fringe of Summer or throughout winter. Please feel free to download this brochure prepared by the Gympie council for more information on what to expect along the way.


Kilkivan to Goomeri (27.7km)

The trail surface from Kilkivan to Murgon has a gravel and dirt surface that is rough in sections. It also entails wading through a watercourse near Kilkivan so more suited for horse riders, fitter walkers and mountain bike riders.


Killkivan

  • Toilets and water

  • Shops,Cafe, Pub, fuel station and Hotel/Motel, BnB

  • Visitor information Centre

  • Free camping behind the Kindergarten


Goomeri to Murgon (17.2km)

Goomeri

  • Toilets and water

  • Pub, cafes, motels, fuel station

  • Bakery

  • The Goomeri Motel

  • Visitor Information Centre

Murgon

  • Toilets and water

  • Pub, cafes, motels, fuel station

  • Bakery

  • Visitor Information Centre

  • Camping available on the ouskirts of the town

  • Golf course

  • Dairy Museum

Wondai

  • Toilets and water

  • Pubs,Cafe, motels, fuel

  • Visitor Information Centre

  • Free camping in town

Wondai to Tingoora (8 km)

Tingoora

  • Toilets and water

  • Pub (Closed July 2020) - Bottle shop open

  • Free camping available

Tingoora to Kingaroy (22km)

Wooroolin

  • Toilets and water

  • Pub, cafe

  • Free camping available beside the trail

Memerambi

  • Toilets

Crawford

  • Emergency water available at the state school in Siefert St.

Kingaroy

Kingaroy is a major regional centre with all facilites for a visitor including:

  • Accomodation and food

  • Toilets and water

  • Visitor Information Centre

  • Peanut Van

  • Bicycle spares from PSM ProBike in Haly Street

 

Sources for this article:

https://www.railtrails.org.au/trail?view=trail&id=149

https://www.gympie.qld.gov.au/documents/40005057/41360494/Kilkivan%20to%20Kingaroy%20Rail%20Trail%20Brochure.pdf

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