He jumps - careless of the winter’s water temperature - into the still, untouched surface of the waterfall’s rock pool like it’s something he’s done countless times before. John Carter’s pile of clothes is dumped in a heap next to the water’s edge. There is no towel, the water is icy cold and the 5 o’clock shadows are starting to cover the rock pool. But this hasn’t stopped him from trading the Gold Coast hustle and bustle for the tranquility of Purling Brook Falls.
Perhaps it is the calmness confined within the tall trees and natural rock faces that best encapsulates this remote spot. Purling Brook Falls is about a half hour drive inland from Mudgeeraba on Regency Place.
“I try to finish work early and come here at the end of the week to wash off the office cobwebs,” says Mr Carter, standing with water dripping from his solid and tall stature. His deep brown eyes are exposed when he sweeps back the thick dark hair falling into his face. The 36 year old gives the sense of strength and authority, yet still manages to bring a calm ambiance.
“A lot of people come here on day trips, but I see myself as a bit of a local now and come for a short time in the afternoon. I like to end my working week and start my weekend with a refreshing swim – it almost feels like I’ve escaped to some place tropical, in another country.”
The catchment of Purling Brook Falls is protected in the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area with the waterfall height spanning just over 100m. The journey to the waterfall takes you on a 2km walking track from the car park surrounded by Australian bush deep into the rainforest and further away from the stresses of every day life.
Rain or shine and at any time, Purling Brook Falls showcases its natural beauty. The tall trees and rock faces surrounding the waterfall act as an arrangement to protect you from the outside world.
“The first time I came here, I instantly felt a weight off my shoulders,” said Mr Carter, his eyes gleaming with life. “Sometimes you need reminding of how little your issues are in such a big, beautiful and natural world.”