Mount Surprise is a tiny settlement (no more than a pub, a couple of cafes, a railway station and a service station) located 319 km south-west of Cairns and 393 km east of Normanton on the Gulf Development Road. It is 453 m above sea-level and its annual rainfall is 802 mm. Its current industries include cattle, tin mining and gemstones.
Forty Mile Scrub National Park is a relic of an ancient rainforest which has remained virtually untouched for millions of years. It has a bewilderingly rich variety of flora species – some say the greatest concentration anywhere in Australia – and it is an area which is used to support the theory of continental drift.
A recent addition to the interesting places around Mount Surprise is the Tallaroo Station Hot Springs. Located 38 km west of Mount Surprise the station is open to the public from April to September. The hot springs exist in a strange five-terraced sequence which rises from deep inside the earth and bubbles up in the Einasleigh River.
45 km south of Forsayth is a very pleasant swimming hole, surrounded by cliffs, gorges and, not surprisingly, plenty of animals that know a good thing when they see it. There is a camping village with facilities which conducts tours of the gorge starting either from the campground or from Forsayth.