Hidden Treasures of the Great Southern, Western Australia
Hidden Treasures of the Great Southern, Western Australia

Borden and The Stirling Ranges

Borden was gazetted as a town in 1916. The name was proposed by the Secretary for Railways as the name of a siding on the new Tambellup - Ongerup Railway. It was named after the Right Honorable Sire Robert Laird Borden, the 8th Prime Minister of Canada (1911 - 1920), although there is no record of why.

In the early years at the height of the sandalwood trade, Paper Collar Creek was a meeting point for the sandalwood cutters as they traveled between the hinterland and the port. When they headed to town, they would dress up their shirts with collars made of paperbark to impress the ladies, and then discard the paper collar near the creek on the way back. Sandalwood Road near the Amelup store is another reminder of one of Western Australia's first export industries. Amelup is now known for its CAUTION; NUDISTS CROSSING sign where gentlemen can create their own unique photo memento from the waist up by standing behind the sign.

Surrounded by undulating farming country, focusing on both grain and livestock production, Borden continues to be the service centre for outlying farms. In the past few years the town has witnessed the rapid expansion of the Cooperative Bulk Handling bin into a strategic receival point for grain from all over the region. The grain bins provide an interesting focal point for the town.

And as the closest town to the Stirling Ranges, the Borden area is ideally located to provide accommodation and other essential services for those wishing to explore this region.

 

Sightseeing

Stirling Range National Park
You step off from Borden into the spectacular Stirling Range National Park. It's where nature lovers come to hike, go abseiling or rock climbing, take photographs and have picnics.

It has some of the best mountain walks in Western Australia, but walkers must always carry water and be prepared for sudden weather changes. You can get mountain mists, wind chill and rain at any time. In winter, there's occasional snowfall.

Stirling Ranges wildlifeIn such a large area you're going to see a lot of wildlife: kangaroos and wallabies, emus, rare spiders, numbats, eagles, black and white cockatoos and numerous other native birds.

The walks on offer include Bluff Knoll (1096m), Toolbrunup (1052m), Ellen Peak (1012m), Mount Trio (856m), Mount Magog (856m), Mount Hassell (847m), and Talyuberlup Peak (783m). Take your pick - depending on which hill you choose, it can be a test for the unfit and those with dicky knees.

 

Nightwell Mineral Spring
This is located 13 km along Nightwell Road between Borden and Ongerup. The spring was a camping ground for cattle farmers using the stock route across to Margaret River and Busselton, as it was a guaranteed source of fresh water. Legend has it that it was called Nightwell because the water only flowed from the ground at night time, never during the day.

 

The Lily
The Lily windmill, Stirling RangesOwner, Mr Pleun Hitzert, using recycled bricks and timber from the old Albany jetty, built this replica 16th Century Dutch windmill. With a 22 tonne cap and sails, it is the only one of its kind and one of the largest windmills ever built in Australia. It is now a fully operating flour mill, producing organic wholemeal and white flour for sale.

The resturant (open by appointment) situated adjacent to the windmill and is located in the original, relocated and reconstructed 1924 Federation-style railway station building from Gnowangerup.

 

Accommodation

Stirling Range Retreat Chester Pass Rd, Stirling Range. 126 beds. Chalets, cabins and caravans, powered and unpowered sites, hot showers, laundry, pool, BBQ, campers' kitchen and playground, all in a natural bush setting. Contact Tony or Ayleen Sands. Ph 9827 9229, fax 9827 9224 www.stirlingrange.com.au.

Trio Park Camp Ground Salt River Rd, Stirling Range. (40 people) Contact John Byrne. Ph 9827 9270, fax 9827 9271 www.mounttrio.com.au.

Moingup Springs Camp Ground Chester Pass Rd, Stirling Range. Situated in the middle of the park. Toilets, free gas BBQs, no power. Small fee charged. Ph 9827 9230 or 9827 9278.

The Lily Chester Pass Rd, Borden. Offers 3 types of accommodation, each having its own outside seating area. Fully self-contained with linen, towels, wood heater, iron and board, TV, radio/CD player, fridge, stove, microwave and food essentials. Daily breakfast basket included. Ph 9827 9205, fax 9827 9206.

Glenelg Quarters Sandalwood Rd, Stirling Range. Self-contained budget accommodation for 12 persons. Shared ablution block, kitchen and eating area, which could be used for workshops. Situated at the base of the Stirling Ranges with magnificent views. Contact Shirely Moir, ph 9827 9274.

Koolatoo Farmstay Self-contained shearer's quarters sleeping 12 persons. Shared ablution block, kitchen and eating area. Lounge area suitable for meetings, etc. Contact Brendan Barrows, ph 9828 1113.

Yardup Cottage Farmstay Chester Pass Rd, Borden. Self-contained early 1900s weatherboard farm cottage which sleeps 4 persons. Contact Ellen Milne, ph 9827 9209.

Yardup Shearers' Quarters Chester Pass Rd, Borden. Self-contained budget accommodation for 12 persons. Shared ablution block, kitchen, eating area and sitting room. Kitchen/eating area has long trestle table and could be used for workshops. Contact Ellen Milne, ph 9827 9209.

The Cottage at Yarawee PO Box 32, Borden. Wonderful old homestead, built in the 1920s, with untouched charm. Sleeps 4 persons and has a brass double bed, leadlight window, wide open shower, BBQ, swimming pool and attractive picnic spots. Breakfast and dinner provided on request. No facilities for cooking. Contact Bronwyn Gaze, ph 9827 3530, fax 9827 3536.

Yarawee Quarters Borden. Sleeps 10 persons. Has separate kitchen/eating area whichcould be used for workshops. Contact Bronwyn Gaze, ph 9827 3530, fax 9827 3536.

Borden B & B John St, Borden. Contact Mary Murray, ph/fax 9828 1148.

 

Food & Drinks

Borden Tavern Moir St, Borden. Contact Mandy or Stephen, ph 9828 1026.

Bluff Knoll Café Chester Pass Rd, Borden. A warm, friendly and welcoming place to visit whilst touring the Stirling Range National Park. Cafe food with a smile. Want to see the Stirling Range from an Eagles perspective talk to us about our scenic flights due to arrive after July 2012. Bluff Knoll Cafe is open every day (except Christmas Day) from 6.00am to 9.00pm. Contact the cafe, ph (08) 9827 9293

The Lily Dutch Windmill is open by appointment only. For reservations please contact Hennie or Pleun Hitzert on 9827 9205.

Borden General Store Moir St, Borden. Takeaway only. Ph 9828 2045.

Amelup Roadhouse Chester Pass Rd, Amelup. Takeaway only. Contact David or Carol, ph 9827 9222.

 

For more information, please visit the Shire of Gnowangerup website or phone 08 9827 1007.

 

Don't Miss...

Stirling Range Retreat - Spring Celebrations a range of bird walks, orchid tours and flora slide evenings are available for you to participate in from mid August to 31st October. For more information please contact 08 9827 9229 or info@stirlingrange.com.au

 

Abseiling and rock climbing are permitted in the Stirling Range National Park, but you must have your own gear.

Stirling Ranges abseiling and rock climbing

The stars at night - Remember, you're out in the bush, away from the glare of city lights. Go outside at night and look up. You won't believe the number of stars there are in the southern hemisphere and how close they seem.

Scenic flights over the Stirling Ranges can be arranged with pilot Lindsay Joice of Albany. Advance bookings are made through The Lily Café on 9827 9205. The length of the flight determines price.

Stirling Ranges scene

Bird Watching and Hidden Treasures Orchid and Wildflower Touris in the Stirling Range - At the Stirling Range Retreat, from 15 August til the 31st October each year, the Hidden Treasures Orchid and Wildflower Tours (2hour - 3hour duration) operate daily from 9 am. Hidden Treasures Bird Walks (1.5hour durations) operate twice daily at 8 am and 3 pm from mid September to 31st October.

Whale's Willy
If you enjoy a good laugh, then the Borden Tavern is the place for you. Mounted on the wall of the Borden Tavern is a real whale's willy. The Tavern is open everyday from midday to late and is a good place to have a quiet drink.

 

 



Stirling Range sunset
Stirling Ranges welcomes walkers, climbers and sightseers
Stirling Range wildflowers