Mount Magnet is the next town encounted when traveling north from Perth to Newman. Mount Magnet is a crossroads and mining town; i.e. now a relatively young town in recent times that has been planned for mining growth. Originally Mount Magnet was an old gold rush town. However its gold-rush heyday can be seen in its very wide main street with three hotels, a race course and a golf course complete with oiled greens.
The name was chosen during exploration of the region due to an isolated hill 5 km north west of the town current townsite. This hill has extremely high iron content and affected the compasses of explorers. Serendipitously, the magnetic variation at this location, as of 2006, is zero: magnetic north equals true north.
Surrounding the town are remnants of old mining operations, and to the north east are significant Aboriginal sites being preserved jointly by the local community and the West Australian Museum.
Today Mount Magnet is primarily a service town for the surrounding pastoral district which supports very large sheep stations.