Mary2Bay Rail Trail Home


M2BRT = Mary to Bay Trail. FCBUG = Fraser Coast Bicycle Users Group

FCRC = Fraser Coast Regional Council DTMR = Dept Transport and Main Roads

Overview of M2BRT

A FCBUG initiative (from 2004) with support from FCRC and DTMR



FCRC has allocated $20,000 from their budget for 2023-24 financial year for improvements to M2BRT.

The shelter has been erected at Takura Trail Head and trail surface improvements continue, all by FCBUG volunteers.

Work on 2.74km of rail trail  from the Walker Street entrance in Marybough has been completed. Now all that is needed to another 10km to link it from Quarry Road to Colton.

Thanks for Council for providing a new map showing the plan for completing the community’s recereational trail, linking Maryborough to Hervey Bay.

Click here to read the latest media release about M2BRT and our Opening Event.


Our Ambassador worked hard at getting the message out, including featuring on Council’s electronic media.  The Maryborough Sun was most obliging – click here for their coverage.

The Advertiser managed a report on the event afterwards – click on page 26.

Rail Trails Australia shared an article in their RTA News.

Fraser McDonald (chip off old block) shone this week in producing an excellent short promo video of our Rail Trail.  


August Report


  • It was a dry month but a massive amount of work took place leading up to and during the Opening Day on 26 August. It was a great success enjoyed by about 350 people.
  • Jen and Mike Allsopp did a terrific job getting all the signs completed. All the critical signs were installed before the opening. The small number remaining will be completed in the next couple of weeks.
  • Steve Neilsen levelled the full 11km with his Bobcat and spreader bar. Some drainage areas were fixed. In one and a half days Dennis Johnson (Truck Driver), David Lightbody (Spotter), Rick McNamara (Truck Driver) and Wayne Stark (Assistant to everyone) worked as a good team with Steve Neilsen (Bobcat) to get gravel across the gullies at Bridges 2, 4 and 5. Some rain and compaction will help this very good start.
  • MEDIA EVENT. The media event organised by Dave McLeod went very well with Max Voigt covering Ken’s absence. Channel 7 & ABC radio did a short coverage with Dave & Max and Councillors David Lewis and Phil Truscott. Councillor Jade Wellings was also present.
  • OPENING DAY. This was a huge effort and a long list of people contributing. Thanks to the “Fossils” from the FCBUG who ran the food and drinks stall. Well done lads. Thanks to Dave McLeod, Mike and Jen Allsopp, Dennis Johnson, Max Voigt and others who helped organise and do the work required. Guest Speakers were Bruce Saunders, the Member from Maryborough representing the State Govt; David Lewis, Councillor representing the FCRC and Desley O’Grady representing Rail Trails Australia.
  • VISITING BIKE TEAMS. Two groups rode long distances arriving one hour before the official opening ceremony speeches. Andrew Demack from Bicycle Queensland lead a team from near Ipswich riding about 450km mostly along other rail trails. Desley O’Grady lead another team riding about 400km from Builyan west of Gladstone.  This added a lot of interest to the whole event and the M2BRT.
  • We currently have about $1,500 left in the funds but 20,000 from the FCRC and 11,000 from the DTMR are due to be deposited very soon.
  • ADVISORY COMMITTEE. Next bi-monthly meeting is 7 September 2023.



Work in July

  • Light rain settled the dust. Bob Webley, Wayne Stark, David Lightbody and Ken erected 10 out of 12 posts at the end of the gullies for arrow signs to be fastened later.
  • Ross Collins, Dennis Johnson and David Lightbody erected the Grillex shelter at Takura. Great work. Wayne Stark assembled the table and seats. Well done all.
  • Mike A and Ken McD took Martin Kelly of the Ambulance service on a tour to complete the Emergency Response plan. This went well.
  • Ken took Glen Miller, the Founder and President of the Butchulla Men’s Aboriginal Assoc on a tour. Glen was very supportive and interestingly worked underground at the Dunstan coal mine near the rail trail for a short time after High School in Maryborough. He was keen to attend the opening and offered support.
  • Ken, Mike and Jen had a constructive meeting with Craig England, David Gleadow and Martin (Finance person) on 12 July. There was a lot of detail covered. Mike has kept comprehensive notes of these discussions. A couple of positives were that DTMR will pay for the signs (about $3,000) for the trail. They said they would provide ongoing funds of $11,000 per year.  i.e.  $1,000 / km.
  • Mike and Jen Allsopp organised signs to be made by Wolfpack printing for the 11km. This work is in progress. It will be a bit tight to get them up before 26 Aug. We plan to get all the posts in early so fastening the signs will be fast. Jen and Mike are also working with FC Tourism and Events in developing a M2BRT website.
  • Planning for the Opening on 26 August has been ongoing. Dave McLeod has been busy with invitations and organising the media etc.
  • The DTMR funds of $4,825 came in. Max Voigt reported good news from FCRC with financial support of $20,000 for the 2023/24 financial year.
  • Some bulldozer work occurred last week. The plan is to level the whole 11km, fix one ramp and get some gravel across 2 or 3 gullies … plus other work so it will be in good shape for the Opening.
    August Update
    Ken has covered the Rail Trail opening well in his report so just a few points from there. Apology from me for this Tuesday night I’ll be coming in from an overnight inspection of part of my National Trail section in my role as Section Co-ordinator Biggenden to Manumbar.
    I’d like to add my thanks to Ken’s for the tremendous effort made by volunteers to make the opening the success that it was. From an advocacy perspective it has given us huge impetus and credibility at local and State Government levels and we now need to keep that pressure up to secure funding and works to complete the Rail Trail. Local State Member Bruce Saunders opened the Trail with Councilor David Lewis and Deputy Mayor Denis Chapman rode to the event on his horse.
    FCRC created a simple overview map as part of their media support work which will be useful and is greatly appreciated- at bottom
     There was a low key event Saturday night at a picnic area down on the Esplanade near the Surf Club at Torquay for opening event organisers to spend time with our long distance travellers. As well as an opportunity to offer them hospitality after the ride in from Maryborough that morning it was a good opportunity for networking between FCBUG, our “sister RT” BBIRT, Bicycle Queensland and Rail Trails Australia.
    RTA NSW reps John O’Brien and partner Kathy travelled up from Dubbo which was greatly appreciated. Desley O’Grady Patron of BBIRT is Central Qld RTA rep and was instrumental in FCBUG securing the TMR licence in 2021. Qld rep Mark Linnett was unable to be present due to work commitments but gave us many hours researching and providing scans of historic photos and information.
    A number of post-opening activities for me will include
    * Updating mapping and the RT brochure with Jen. I suggest that with no further extensions planned in the near future this is the time to seek grant funding for a professional brochure.
    *Maryborough Rotary are keen to stage an event on our section in November so I will need to turn our event risk management for the opening into a template along with creating a suitable application form (BVRT has an excellent form we can modify).
    *Bob has already updated Mboro Info Centre wall maps and I’ll do the same here next week.
    *Provide RTA webmaster with update on the M2BRT with Jen
    *Write copy for Summer RTA full colour glossy mag
    And to finish- Takura Trailhead Village that popped up for a few hours on Saturday morning August 2023 with a range of stalls in a semicircle around the event area where the opening ceremony was held.
    July’s Update
    G’day all
    August opening date (26th August) is coming up on us fast. Ken, as we have seen, is busy getting the Trail in great shape ready for the opening. The opening program can be found down further in my report.
    The big take-away from this opening if we can push it to the max will be significantly increased leverage to see the Rail Trail completed. So we need everyone in the BUG to come onboard volunteering, rolling up on the day, maybe emailing your local Council member… whatever works for you. One item for discussion Tuesday night will be volunteers required for a range of tasks.
    As Ken said, we now have our shelter and picnic table ready for the day which is a significant development. I haven’t received the draft of the interpretive signage yet so that may not be available in time for the opening.
    Jess Cook (Communications Officer Marketing and Communications with Fraser Coast Regional Council) is planning a media event on Thursday morning Thursday 17th August at 10 am at Takura with a range of journalists and media invited. As well, Jess is publicising the opening in a range of FCRC online media.
    JAG Sports & Event  First Aid Services have kindly agreed to provide First Aid at an affordable cost.
    Ultime Velo – Bicycle Servicing and Repair agreed some time ago to be our official bike mechanics for emergency repairs; and there have been enquiries from other bicycle businesses as well so there could be several bike shops present.
    Martin Kelly (QAS Regional Senior Operations Supervisor for Wide Bay) suggested that all cyclists should have the Emergency Plus app loaded on their mobile phones for emergency use anywhere and particularly on the Rail Trail  when he was inspecting the Trail with Ken and Mike The Emergency+ app is a free app developed by Australia’s emergency services and their Government and industry partners. It uses GPS functionality built into smart phones to help a Triple Zero (000) caller provide critical location details required to mobilise emergency services. and it can be found on a range of app stores.
    Opening program–  if as many as possible could ride out to the opening, it would ease parking issues. Whilst we have a range of parking options available, parking space will still be at a premium.
    0830     Cyclists can ride out to Churchill Mine Road and return to check out the Trail at their leisure.
    0930     Ken will take invited official guests to at least Bridge 6 to showcase the work that has been done to prepare the Trail.
    1100      Official opening with Bruce Saunders MP performing the opening
    1130       or after opening- all cyclists off the RT so the horse riders present can enjoy a safe ride out on the Trail.
    Don’t forget Desley O’Grady, Rail Trails Austalia Patroln, is cycling down from Calliope with a number of BBIRT members, which will take nearly a week. They will follow the BBIRT to Gayndah then take secondary and bush roads to Maryborough.
    Andrew Demack BQ is cycling up from Wulkuraka (Ipswich) with a party via the BVRT, the Link trail to Kingaroy then the K2K  RT and secondary roads to Maryborough. This will take about a week.
    Both parties plan to meet in Maryborough on the Saturday morning and BUG members Bob Webley and Wayne Stark will then lead them to Takura via the newly completed FCRC section of the Trail at Walker St and the various back alleys which are our only route until the RT is completed. Hopefully, we’ll get a few minutes advance notice of their arrival and we can cheer them into the Takura Trailhead.

    M2BRT Discussion Group page has reached almost 3,200 members…