The railway was constructed in the late 1800s to carry coal and shale out of the valley. It became a tourist attraction as early as the 1930s. The historic photograph from 1900 at infobluemountains.net.au shows the railway as it was when used for coal mining and without the vegetation around it, so gives a great view of how steep it really is.
Words to walk with:
From the Scenic World website
“Ride the steepest incline Railway in the world down to a lush and hidden valley. The 415m descent will lead you through a cliff side tunnel into ancient rainforest.”