Tom Price is such a cute name. And it sounds like a pretty cute place to boot.
Located just over 1600km north of Perth in the Pilbara region of WA, Tom Price sits at the bottom of Mount Nameless (surely that's the most unoriginal name for a mountain in the history of mountain naming) and comes alive in WA’s wildflower season.
Its population of 2770 has a median age of just 29, reflecting the young workforce on Rio Tinto’s Mt Tom Price mine and the town’s family-orientated community.
Facilities include a good-sized supermarket, bank, GP, hospital, two primary schools, a secondary school, TAFE and several motels and restaurants. There’s also a visitor information centre, an Olympic-sized pool, an open-air cinema in summer and a stack of sports on offer, from motocross and speedway to netball and soccer. Flight access is via shuttle bus to Paraburdoo Airport, 70km away.
According to Rio Tinto's website, its iron ore operations in the Pilbara (including Mt Tom Price) have expanded to include 15 mines, four independent port terminals and a 1700km rail network.
And the cute name? Mount Tom Price (the town, the mine and the mountain) takes its name from the vice-president of US steel company Kaiser Steel. Mr Tom Price was a major supporter of the opening of the Pilbara region.
"I lived in Tom Price for five years and found it an oasis in the heart of the Pilbara. The weather is fabulous and scenery in that part of Australia is something else. Watching the sunrise, or sunset from the top of Mt Nameless is nothing short of priceless. The clear skies both night and day, and the gorges and waterholes at Karijini are beautiful. A great place to live - just get out and see it. Oh, loved the people too!"
- Caro, Perth