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Bushwalking track notes, photographs, maps and more for Mackerel Beach are found in each of the tabs below
Mackerel Beach Loop
Time: 3 hrs Walking time
Includes the time for the return leg
Please allow extra time to rest and to explore
11.3 km NNE of Terrey Hills
Length: 8.2 km Walk Length
As this is a return style walk, the 8.2 km includes the return leg of this walk (ie back to the start)
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park
Climb: 299 m Total Climbing
This walk has a total cumulative climb of 299 m, this is the total of the elevation gains made in each of the walks uphill sections
There is car access and parking near the start and end of this walk
Style: Return
Track: Hard

This walk takes one of two main tracks down to Mackerel Beach. The track leaves West Head Rd, passing some historic Aboriginal engravings before descending to the beach. The track loops around the small community of Mackerel Beach to come back down the beach and return to West Head Rd. A nice An optional side trip to Currawong Beach makes a nice addition to this walk. (open in app)


Today's Fire rating
LOW MODERATE (No fire ban)
  Bushwalking track notes photographs, maps and camping spots for Mackerel Beach

Map of Walk

Location

                Sponsor of Mackerel Beach bushwalking tracknotes
Map of Mackerel Beach
Problem loading PDF Try here
Map Controls - Show Contours | Hide Path | Hide Distances | Hide Names
Map Scale 1 km
Int. Basin Trk and West Head Rd
Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Entry
Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Entry
Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Exit
Int. Basin Trk and Mackerel Trk
Mackerel Trk Clearing
Mackerel South Gate
Mackerel South Gate
Mackerel North Gate
Mackerel Beach Wharf
Mackerel Beach Wharf
Digger Crescent Bridge
Mackerel Beach Bush Fire Brigade Shed
Starting point for this hiking track: Int. Basin Trk and West Head Rd

Base maps are used under licence and is © Department of lands   Panorama Avenue Bathurst 2795   www.lands.nsw.gov.au

Maps that cover the walk area (please always carry maps of the area)

Print a map and track notes here
 Broken Bay 1:25 000 Map Series NSW-91301N 
 Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park Tourist Map 1:40 000 Map Series CMA Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park Tourist Map 
 Sydney 1:100 000 Map Series 9130 

Photo Gallery

 
The Basin Track Carpark
 
The Basin Track Carpark +
 
Aboriginal rock carvings, a man
 
Aboriginal rock carvings, a man +
 
The Basin Track to Aboriginal Engravings
 
The Basin Track to Aboriginal Engravings +

 
Pittwater from a clearing above Mackerel Beach
 
Pittwater from a clearing above Mackerel Beach +
 
South gate of Mackerel Beach
 
South gate of Mackerel Beach +
 
Mackerel Beach
 
Mackerel Beach +

 
Mackerel Beach community
 
Mackerel Beach community +
 
Bridge between Digger Cr and Monash Ave
 
Bridge between Digger Cr and Monash Ave +
 
Boat on Digger Cres
 
Boat on Digger Cres +

 
Sun through leaf
 
Sun through leaf +
 
Track through palms
 
Track through palms +
 
Seat near Mackerel Wharf
 
Seat near Mackerel Wharf +

Terrain


Please note: This is a 'return' style walk and therefore these graphs only show the terrain for the first half of the walk (until the turn around point.)

Cross sectional view of the Mackerel Beach bushwalking track

Cross Section of the Mackerel Beach bushwalking track



Analysis and summary of the altitude variation on the Mackerel Beach bushwalking track

Summary of the gradients over the the lenght of the Mackerel Beach bushwalking track

Overview of this walks Grading - Based on the AS 2156.1 - 2001
These details are new. This new feature still requires more testing and refining. Please use the 'Walker Feedback' for report specific issues. Please e-mail Matt if you have any general comments. Hope you find it helpful.

Under this standard, a walk is graded based on the most difficult section of the walk.
Length 8km
Time 3 hrs
.


Grade 4/6

Track: Hard
AS 2156.1 Gradient Short steep hills (3/6)
Quality of track Rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely (4/6)
Signs Minimal directional signs (4/6)
Experience Required Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Weather Weather generally has little impact on safety (1/6)
Infrastructure Limited facilities, not all cliffs are fenced (3/6)
*This summary of grading information is new and still in testing

Some more detail of this walks Grading
Here is a bit more details explaining the grading looking at sections of the walk.
Gradient
2.6km of this walk has gentle hills with occasional steps and another 970m has short steep hills. The remaining (530m) is flat with no steps.

Quality of track
2.7km of this walk follows a clear and well formed track or trail and another 810m follows a formed track, with some branches and other obstacles. The remaining (610m) follows a rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely.

Signs
2.3km of this walk has directional signs at most intersection and another 1.2km is clearly signposted. The remaining (610m) has minimal directional signs.

Experience Required
Around 3.9km of this walk requires no previous bushwalking experience, whilst the remaining 180m requires some bushwalking experience.

Weather
This whole walk, 4.1km is not usually affected by severe weather events (that would unexpectedly impact safety and navigation).

Infrastructure
Around 3km of this walk has limited facilities (such as not all cliffs fenced), whilst the remaining 1.1km is close to useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats).

Track Notes


Since this is a 'return' style walk once you have had enough of the walk, turn around and retrace your steps back to the start.
Drive to Int. Basin Trk and West Head Rd
You can drive or ride to this start of this Bushwalk A park entry fee is required for driving into the park.
You can drive or ride to the start of this walk
Use these links to plan your trip to the start of this walk.
Plan your trip from --> Castle Hill|Chatswood|Dural|Epping|Gosford|Hornsby|Katoomba|Manly|Parramatta|Penrith|Strathfield|Sutherland|Sydney|

(0 km) Int. Basin Trk and West Head Rd to Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Entry
Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 363 m Time = 7 mins
Climb = 13 m Descent = -3 m
From the car park, this walk follows the management trail around the green gate, keeping West Head Rd on the right. The walk continues along the trail, which tends to the left, and soon comes to a signposted intersection with the 'Aboriginal Engravings' track on the right.

(0.36 km) Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Entry to Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Exit
Optional sidetrip: Walk: Easy - bushtrack
Length = 105 m Time = 2 mins
Climb = 3 m Descent = -1 m
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Aboriginal Engravings' sign into the heath and away from the management trail. The track tends left, to a ramp after approximately 10m. The track follows the wooden edging over the rock surface, between the engravings, heading to the signposted intersection on the management trail again.
(Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn sharp right to continue along this walk.)

The Basin Track Aboriginal Engravings Alt = 163 m
The Basin Track Aboriginal Engravings, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, is a large rock surface scattered with Aboriginal engravings. The engravings depict men, fish, hopping wallabies and a club. The engravings are marked with interpretive signs which outline where on the rocks the engravings are and how they were made.

(0.36 km) Int. Basin Trk and Aboriginal Engraving Trk Entry to Mackerel Trk Clearing
Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 1.78 km Time = 33 mins
Climb = 14 m Descent = -94 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads south up the hill (keeping the engravings on the right) to the next signposted intersection with the 'Aboriginal Engravings' track on the right.
Continue straight: From the intersection, the walk winds gently uphill along the management trail, keeping the engravings track initially on the right. The management trail then comes to the intersection with the signposted 'Mackerel service trail'[1] on the left.
Veer left: From the intersection, this walk heads towards the sea, following the arrow sign 'Mackerel Service Trail'. The track meanders down the wide spur for approximately 1km, to then lead along a narrower area of the spur and into a saddle. The track continues to undulate to a clearing with a view over Mackerel Beach and Pittwater Bay.

(2.15 km) Mackerel Trk Clearing to Mackerel South Gate
Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 437 m Time = 10 mins
Climb = 4 m Descent = -59 m
Veer right: From the intersection, this walk follows the ridge down towards the sea. The track winds down the ridge, passing numerous large green water tanks to the left of the track, as the walk continues for approximately 50m to a lookout on a large boulder. The track heads down the left side of the boulder, winding steeply down the hillside to houses. The walk then leads to a small gate on the track in front of a brown wooden house.

(2.58 km) Mackerel South Gate to Currawong Beach
Optional sidetrip: Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 265 m Time = 7 mins
Climb = 17 m Descent = -26 m
Turn right: From the gate, this walk heads down the headland away from the house. The track drops down some small rock slopes to continues down the hill side for approximately 200m to Currawong Beach.
(Retrace your steps back to the main track, then continue straight to continue along this walk.)

Currawong Beach Alt = 3 m
Currawong Beach, Ku-ring-gai National Park, is a 400m stretch of sand looking east over Pittwater. The beach is situated between The Basin and Mackerel Beach. Currawong Beach has a wharf which allows for access via the water. Backing the beach is Currawong Beach Cottages and some steep hills. 'Little Mackerel Beach' was purchased in 1949 by the NSW Labour Council for their members. The resort was called Currawong, which is now the common name for the beach.

(2.58 km) Mackerel South Gate to Mackerel North Gate
Track: Hard - footpath
Length = 176 m Time = 4 mins
Climb = 5 m Descent = -18 m
Turn left: From the gate, this walk heads through the gate, then winds between and under the houses for approximately 200m, coming to a gate before the beach.

(2.76 km) Mackerel North Gate to Mackerel Beach Wharf
Walk: Easy - beach
Length = 291 m Time = 6 mins
Climb = 3 m Descent = -17 m
Veer left: From the gate, this walk heads onto the beach and continues for approximately 300m across the beach to the wharf in the middle of the beach.

Mackerel Beach Alt = 2 m
Mackerel Beach, also known as Great Mackerel Beach, is a 600m stretch of sand facing east over Pittwater. The beach is backed by a lagoon and a small community of houses. Mackerel Beach has a wharf with public ferry access. Mackerel Beach and its southern neighbour, Little Mackerel or Currawong Beach, were originally purchased for farming in 1823 by John Clarke. The land was then subdivided and more than a hundred houses were built, many of which still stand today.

(3.05 km) Mackerel Beach Wharf to Palm Trees North end of Mackerel Beach
Alternate Route: Walk: Easy - bushtrack ( Show detail)
Length = 349 m Time = 6 mins
Climb = 5 m Descent = -1 m
Continue straight: From the wharf, the walk heads along the beach (keeping the water to your right) for approximately 300m, to the only palm trees on this end of the beach. Below the palm trees is a boulder with a black arrow painted on it.
Turn sharp left to rejoin the main walk, following the notes from 3.05km 'Mackerel Beach Wharf'.

(3.05 km) Mackerel Beach Wharf to Palm Trees North end of Mackerel Beach
Track: Moderate - bushtrack,servicetrail,bushtrack
Length = 1.04 km Time = 21 mins
Climb = 37 m Descent = -32 m
Turn left: From the wharf, this walk follows the tarmac pavement to the the corner beneath a large, yellow 'Submarine Cable' sign. The track then turns right, heading along a grassy pathway of Monash Ave. The walk continues along this for approximately 300m to a bridge.
Continue straight: From the bridge, this walk crosses the bridge and leads along the grassy path of Diggers Crescent. The walk turns right after approximately 100m, then continues another 100m to a large shed, the 'Mackerel Beach Bush Fire Brigade' shed.
Continue straight: ****Warning: This section of track has been reported as overgrown and no longer passable**** From the shed, this walk passes along the left side of the shed, to a small grassy clearing near a lagoon. The walk travels alongside the lagoon for approximately 300m, tending right with the lagoon to open onto a sandy creek bed behind the beach. This walk then continues to the right side of the creek, to continue to the two palm trees on this end of Mackerel Beach. A boulder below the two trees is painted with a black arrow.

Drive from Int. Basin Trk and West Head Rd
You can drive or ride from this end of this Bushwalk A park entry fee is required for driving into the park.
You can drive or ride from the end of this walk
Use these links to plan your trip from the end of this walk.
Plan your trip to --> Castle Hill|Chatswood|Dural|Epping|Gosford|Hornsby|Katoomba|Manly|Parramatta|Penrith|Strathfield|Sutherland|Sydney|

Getting there

Plan your trip to the start of the walk and back from the end of the walk

Public Transport links currently not working, sorry

Driving Directions
To the start of the walk

Drive from:
From the end of the walk

Drive to:


Near by


Campsites in the park
The Basin campground


Nearest know Outdoor Stores near the start of this walk
Store Address Phone Distance (straight line)
Paddlecraft 3B / 1714 Pittwater Road, Bayview 02 9997 8015 7.9 km
Outdoor Shack 1131 Pittwater Rd , Collaroy (02) 9981 6933 15.8 km
Kellys Camping & Outdoors 826 Pittwater Rd , Dee Why (02) 9972 0061 18.4 km
Larry Adler Ski & Outdoor 1024 Pittwater Rd , Collaroy (02) 9971 8711 16.5 km
Mannings Sports 172 Mann St , Gosford (02) 4325 1617 19.2 km


A list of the nearest UHF CB repeaters I found to Mackerel Beach.
Channel Call sign
(more info)
Site Distance and dir from Mackerel Beach
Click to re-center search
6 VMB7 CB Repeater Site 16 Alan Rd BEROWRA HEIGHTS 13 km (to the WSW)
8 MDC08 Gencom Site Lot 6 Wakefield Close KARIONG 17 km (to the N)
5 SYD05 Sydney Adventist Hospital 185 Fox Valley Rd WAHROONGA
Emergency use only
23 km (to the SW)
3 VMB2 Tower Street BATEAU BAY 29 km (to the NE)
7 SYD07 7 Glamorgan St BLACKTOWN 41 km (to the WSW)

Weather and Park info

Fire Danger
This walk passes Greater Sydney Region fire area which currently has a LOW MODERATE rating and No fire ban in place.
(Tomorrow the Fire Danger Rating is LOW MODERATE, No fire ban.) (Downloaded 3 years ago)
Please Note: Each park may have its own fire ban, this rating is only valid for today and is based on information from the RFS Please check the RFS Website for more information.

Weather and Climate
Weather and Climate summary detailed weather and climate information here
°C (feels like °)
km/h from the
% humidity     (as at )
Wed      29°Showers. Likely storm developing.
Thu19°|25°Possible shower.
Fri18°|30°Partly cloudy.
Sat16°|24°Possible late shower.
A graph displaying the average daily temperature range for the year

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park Link to official closures and fire bans page
A largely untouched wilderness on the northern boundary of Sydney, Ku-ring-gai Chase NP is one of Australia's oldest national parks. Here at the head of the Hawkesbury River, you'll find Aboriginal engravings and sites, as well as sandstone escarpments,
Region: Sydney & Surrounds
Park fees Camping Facilities I am not aware of any closures in this park at the moment.

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