SteamRanger Heritage Railway

The SteamRanger Heritage Railway is a historic train society in South Australia running trains on the Victor Harbor railway line. It is the only group regularly operating broad gauge steam locomotives in South Australia. It is run by volunteers of the South Australian Division of the Australian Railway Historical Society.


Prior to 1995 when the Adelaide to Melbourne line was converted to standard gauge, SteamRanger was based at Dry Creek, an industrial suburb in the northern suburbs of Adelaide, and home to the main road-rail freight depots in Adelaide. The Southern Encounter operated from Adelaide instead of Mount Barker, including six tunnels through the Mount Lofty Ranges. Special services were also operated to other places on the South Australian broad gauge network including Burra (near the Clare Valley), Nuriootpa in the Barossa Valley and shorter services on the metropolitan network.


Mount Barker station in August 2007

The Cockle Train operates year-round between Goolwa and Victor Harbor. It operates with a steam locomotive in school holidays, and historic diesel locomotives or railcars other weekends.

The Southern Encounter runs from Mount Barker to Victor Harbor during winter, utilising most of the remaining broad gauge branch from the main Adelaide to Melbourne line.

Some shorter services along the line are:

  • The Bugle Ranger – from Mount Barker to Bugle Ranges using a Redhen railcar set. Services operate one Sunday each month from late April to October
  • The Highlander – from Mount Barker to Strathalbyn using steam locomotives when possible. Operates on the second Sunday of each month from June until the end of November (excluding October).
  • StrathLink – from Goolwa to Strathalbyn using a restored heritage Brill railcar. Operates during School Holiday periods.


958 & 520 at SteamRanger’s Mount Barker workshop in May 2006

Steam locomotives operated by SteamRanger:


Owned by SteamRanger but not on premises:

See also

External links

35°03′58″S 138°51′56″E / 35.066064°S 138.865665°E / -35.066064; 138.865665Coordinates: 35°03′58″S 138°51′56″E / 35.066064°S 138.865665°E / -35.066064; 138.865665