Framed against the backdrop of Mt Remarkable, the small historic town of Melrose is the oldest settlement in the Flinders Ranges. Word of the discovery of copper in the early 1840s attracted miners, but when the ore body petered out the squatters moved in and Melrose became the centre of a significant grazing and grain-producing area. More recently, the local farmers have diversified into olive groves, oil seeds and grapes. The Ranges first inn, the North Star, opened in a log hut in 1854 and the license continues today although the present hotel was built in 1881. The Mt Remarkable Hotel and the National Trust-listed Melrose Inn date back to 1857. The original police station and courthouse have been converted into the district museum. These days, however, Melrose is a Mecca for bushwalkers drawn to the area by some excellent tracks including the five-hour Mt Remarkable hike which follows part of the famous Heysen Trail. The locals have great pride in their town and their well-kept gardens complement the public reserves which are lavishly draped with roses and bird-friendly native plants.