As mentioned, my step mother is visiting us. She is travelling by train from Echuca to Southern Cross Station where R will collect her.
This has caused me to examine Echuca train timetables. It is quite interesting. Keep in mind that by car, it takes about 2 and half hours, that is 150 minutes without a stop.
The minimum train time seems to be 193 mins, well over half an hour more. How can this be? Worse the maximum time seems to be about 210 mins using the combined bus and train service. Most of the services are by bus to Bendigo and then train to Melbourne.
Add to these times, the time to get to and from the stations, you really have to judge your trip by other thoughts. Train travel is much more relaxing and easy. I should think, although I haven't checked, that it would be cheaper than the petrol you use, although my step mother's car is LPG.
Try this one by train only. 16.10 depart Echuca, stop only Rochester and Elmore, at 17. 25 a 10 min break at Bendigo, no more stops until Southern Cross Station, arrive 19.33. How can it take so long? It is rails with nothing to impede it.
The clue could be here. This one is bus only via Heathcote and Murchison East and follows more closely the route you would take if you drove. Echuca 15.05, stop Rochester and Elmore, arrive Southern Cross 17.45. This is comparable with car travel time and the service is using roads, as you would in your motor car.
That a train only service takes so much longer than a bus service on public roads amazes me. I can see that the train takes a slightly longer than as the crow flies route. Anyone have some easy answers?