Length – 45 km (one way), G2G trail continues to Goderich +79 km
95% rail trail path
5% road crossings, detours
Terrain – mainly flat as rail lines go, gradual hill down to covered bridge
Surface – crushed stone, gravel, rocks, grass, tall weeds, gopher holes!
Skill – easy, intermediate, on west side gets wild and rough
Maps – map boards, sign at gates, milestone markers on some of the route Google map
Traffic – bicycles, hikers, x-country skiers, snowmobiles
Facilities – parking lots, a few outhouses, some food and lodging
Highlights – Montrose covered bridge, large farms, Mennonite community of Elmira and St. Jacobs
Trail Fee – free
Phone – none
Local Clubs – GORBA
Access – Parking lots in Ariss, West Montrose, Elmira, Wallenstein, Linwood, Millbank and other sideroads.
History – This rail line was built in 1907 by Guelph & Goderich Railway between those two towns for a length of 127 km. The railway served communities and farms along this length to get produce to markets and the port on Lake Huron.
Grain was being hauled from Manitoba and up to 4 passenger trains travelled a day in the 1920’s.
Decades later increased auto and truck traffic reduced demand for train travel. The last passenger train travelled in 1955 with freight moving only.
By 1988 Canadian Pacific Railway had decommissioned the route removing the tracks and bridges.