Dowerin Attractions

Rusty The Tin Dog & Tin Dog Creek Walk Trail

Rusty was born in 2004 when the children from the Dowerin District High School developed a project initiative to encourage people to stop in Dowerin.

The students helped with his initial design, sourced funding for his materials and employed an artist to build him.

The students were inspired by the legend of his home, the Tin Dog Creek, which originally got its name during settlement in the area and the commencement of mining in the Yilgarn Goldfields.

The story goes that settlers in Northam started using the surrounding land to feed and rest their stock during winter and driving them home when the feed started to dry off.

A track was opened up as a result of this, leading to Moujakine, Yarragin and Eunuin.

From Goomalling onwards, the road followed a chain of water soaks, one of which became known as the 13-mile soak. The miners who were on their way to the Goldfields would leave their empty tinned beef cans (affectionately called ‘tinned dog’) by the water soak, thus Tin Dog Creek got its unique name (S. Gervas 1997).

Join Rusty the Tin Dog on an adventure throughout his home Tin Dog Creek, located just off Redding Road.

Pick up a walk trail map from the visitors centre at the Community Resource Centre on Stewart Street or at the Shire of Dowerin Office on Cottrell Street and head to the Tourist Information Bay on Goldfields Road and follow the green or red Rusty signs to enjoy the long or short walking trail.

Take a stroll through some of the last stands of untouched bush in the Wheatbelt and you won’t have to look hard to find some fantastic native flora, fauna and wildlife throughout the trail.

There are many educational signs for your interest, the Tin Dog Creek Bird Hyde and some resting points along the way.

Dowerin and Districts Museum

Dowerin and Districts MuseumThe stories of number 16 Cottrell Street and its inhabitants are rich accounts of life in Wheatbelt WA during the first half of the 20th century offering a unique and compelling vision of family and business life at that time.

The building itself is a very authentic weatherboard and iron-roofed cottage, constructed in 1915 by Eugene O'Shaughnessy, the local Saddler and Harness Maker.

Eugene O’Shaughnessy completed his saddlery apprenticeship in Pingelly and came to Dowerin in 1910, taking over the local saddlery business from Mr Gangell.

At that stage it was run from a canvas covered shed but in 1912 the Dowerin Trading Company built two shops and the saddlery business moved into one. The front of that shop is now on the museum premises and the building it fronts houses displays about the saddlery and other businesses from Dowerin town.

In 1915 Eugene married Mae Yolande Holyoake in Pingelly and after a honeymoon in Busselton they moved into their newly built home in October of that year.

Here they raised 5 children: Sheilagh, Tom, Pat, Jim and Carmel, and Mrs O’Shaughnessy lived on here until her death.

There was a proposal to form a museum in town, Apex donated the money to purchase the property and local people donated a range of items to create the unique display you see today.

Bookings are by arrangement through the Dowerin Community Resource Centre on 9631 1662 or the Shire Administration Offices on 9631 1202. Or you can take a virtual tour through the Museum, room by room by clicking on the related tabs under the Museum heading.

Dowerin Museum Brochure

Admission Fees

  • $5 per adult
  • Gold Coin per child

Wheatbelt Heritage Rail

Experience history at the Wheatbelt Heritage Rail Discovery Centre, currently being developed in the heritage rich town site, Minnivale WA. Located in the heart of the Wheatbelt, the centre will celebrate the past romance and importance of rail in the Wheatbelt.

Contact the Shire to arrange a tour of the facility, which includes a fully restored AB Diesel locomotive and other important pieces of rolling stock.

This project is operated by the Shire of Dowerin in partnership with Rail Heritage Western Australia and supported by the AROC group of Councils. Funded by Royalties for Regions and sponsored by Arc Infrastructure, Aurizon and Goldcon Constructions.