Goburra Pool is the most picturesque pool in the Heathcote National Park, and one of the most accessible. A low sandstone
wall surrounds the pool on three sides, whilst beautiful lilies float in the water on the opposite bank. I love the contrast
of colours here from the grey rocks to the orange submerged sandstone to the deep blue-grey water and the vibrant yellows, greens
and whites of the floating vegetation.
Above: View from the cliff top at Goburra Pool
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The pool itself is huge at over 120 metres long and about 20 metres across. Because this long pool is curved,
you can't view it all at once, giving you the opportunity for a swimming exploration around the bend to the
elevated rock shelves that mark the pool boundary downstream. In dry conditions, the pool length can however contract considerably,
as it is quite shallow in parts after you hit the bend. Getting into the water was relatively easy for me after carefully climbing
down onto a pool side rock ledge, but might be
difficult for very young children. The water depth increases in sharp, vertical drops, so you need to swim almost immediately
after getting in. Whilst the middle of the pool is very deep, there are few places where you can dive or jump safely into
the water from the wall around the pool due to those submerged rock shelves. The walls do however offer good protection from
any wind running along the Heathcote Creek Valley.
Above: The water lilies in Goburra Pool
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The track down to the pool is unsignposted, but reasonably visible if you follow the directions below, with wooden
steps clearly marking the start of the steep descent from the Pipeline Track. The track itself is narrow, but was free of encroaching
vegetation when I travelled along it. Open space beside the pool is limited near the end of the track, but if you wander upstream or
downstream along the length of the pool, there are plenty of open rock shelves around.
Here is a video of my swim at the pool, which was one of my favourite swims in the Heathcote National Park.
Other Information Before You Go:
Accessible from the Pipeline Trail, Heathcote National Park, near Heathcote,
38 km (approx. 1 hr drive to the start of the walk) south-west of Sydney.
There are several access points for the Pipeline Trail. I started from the Goburra Track, at
the end of Oliver Street in Heathcote, where you can park your car on the side of the road. This track takes you
over the hill and down natural sandstone steps to the Pipeline Trail. Head north for about 200 metres, where you
will see an unmarked track leading steeply down to the creek, shortly after crossing Goburra gully.
You can also catch the train to Heathcote, and then it's a 1 km walk across the Princes Hwy and
down Oliver Street to the start of the walking track.
Maximum water depth:
Greater than 2 metres
Minimum swimming proficiency required:
Prohibitions including whether you can bring your dog:
No pets other than certified assistance animals, no smoking, no
campfires, no solid fuel burners, no gathering firewood, no generators, no amplified music.
No shade available in or out of the water
Campsites are available at the Mirang Pool Campground
2 km upstream, for up to 12 people at any one time, limited to one night stays only.
You can book these through the managing authority for a nominal fee ($12 per night last time I checked). If you are
staying overnight in the area and don't want to camp, or want to stay longer than a single night, you can try
accommodation in nearby Heathcote
NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service
Nearby attractions: Yabba Pool
, 100-200 m upstream of Goburra Pool.
Before you head out, make sure to read the
swimming safety information
and check with the managing authority for any current change of conditions.
The marker indicates the approximate location of the pool.
If you would like to leave a comment about this swimming spot, please fill in the comment box below.
I am particularly interested in your experiences after visiting, and any changes in conditions, etc.
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