Everything you need to know to find Shark Hole Catherine Hill Bay

Located deep in the Wallarah National Park in Lake Macquarie is a little chasm called Shark Hole. This slot canyon is a popular abseiling location, which for many years had one problem, how do you get out from the bottom? In 2019 some people fastened a ladder which is followed by a rope on a ring bolt which solved this issue. Ever since then Shark Hole has become more accessible and also one of the best Lake Macquarie hidden gems around. Many people consider Shark Hols Catherine Hill Bay’s best kept secret, but I’m going to show you how to find this little gem.

wallarah national park
Inside Shark Hole

Shark Hole is approximately 45m deep at its deepest point which is one of the reasons it is popular with abseilers. There are few places in Lake Macquarie that offer such a deep canyon. Inside the chasm is something that words can’t really describe. The floor is littered with fallen rocks and boulders from the cliffs, and looking up feels like another world. You’ll hear the waves crashing all around you in this inlet, it’s honestly surreal. At its widest Shark Hole is 7 metres wide and the smallest width is around 1.5m, this is where you will climb out of the chasm.

Full disclosure. I am not an abseiler, I am a hiker and have only hiked in and out of Shark Hole so I am unaware of the best places to abseil. However, it should be noted that this is a potentially dangerous location, I do not recommend venturing into Shark Hole alone, or with no abseiling or hiking experience. The ladder is currently fastened to the chasm, however, it does not connect to the ground, so you must jump from the base of the ladder onto a rocky/slippery part of the inlet before using the rope to help you down the rest of the chasm.

I recommend carrying a PLB if you do choose to enter the chasm, as injuries can easily happen in this area and getting out injured will be incredibly difficult.

Do not go here alone and I take no responsibility for accidents or injuries which may happen at this location.

If you’re looking for other hiking options in the area, find out what else there is to see in Wallarah National Park here.

Shark Hole Wallarah National Park
Shark Hole

How to find Shark Hole Catherine Hill Bay

There are multiple ways to find Shark Hole, however, I will be showing you 3 of my favourite ways to get to this location, which is one of the best hidden gems Lake Macquarie has to offer!

From Catherine Hill Bay

Shark Hole hike
The hill of Death at Catherine Hill Bay

Distance 2.4kms one way

This route to find Shark Hole from Catherine Hill Bay is probably one of the harder options to get to shark hole, but also the most rewarding.

From Flowers Drive coming from the Pacific HWY you’ll take the 3 left. This looks like a driveway, however, there is an unknown fire trail attached to this which is what we’ll be using. This is unnamed. However, if using google maps it is the left turn before Colliery Road.

Jump the gate at the entrance to the fire trail and follow this fire trail for approx 1km. For the most part, this fire trail is heavily eroded and well-shaded. From here you’ll reach a T intersection. Head left and follow the trail uphill. Again this is a heavily eroded trail, however, is completely open now with no shade. I call this hill the hill of death. It is very steep and very eroded. Once you reach the top of this hill take the 2nd trail on the right. Stay on this trail for 750m until you reach a T-intersection and then head right for 100m until you see the entrance to Shark Hole.

shark hole Catherine hill bay
Inside Shark Hole

From Caves Beach

Distance: 3.4kms one way

One of the best walks in Lake Macquarie is the Coastal Walking Track in Wallarah National Park which connects Caves Beach to Pinny Beach. Complete this walk to Pinny Beach and cross the creek on Pinny Beach. On the southern side of this creek, you’ll head west and join the Yondeo Trail. Once you reach a T-intersection head to the left and follow this track for 500m. Once you reach another T- intersection head left and take the next right straight off the the Southern Headland Trail. Follow this track for 350m and then head right towards the coast until you reach the entrance to Shark Hole.

shark hole
The way out

Via the Bunkers

Distance 3kms one way

shark hole central coast
Inside Shark Hole

For this particular hike, you’ll need to park at ‘Fat Bike Carpark‘ which is arguably the best name of a carpark. This is a tiny carpark in between Catherine Hill Bay and Swansea in the Wallarah National Park. This carpark only holds about 5 cars, so parking can be tricky here and unfortunately, there is not anywhere else to safely park on this track.

Bunkers at Catherine Hill Bay
WWII bunkers in Wallarah National Park

From here you’ll need to head onto the Southern Headland Trail which heads south from the carpark. You’ll follow this track for approx. 750m until you reach a crossroads. At this crossroads, you’ll head left onto Radar Hill Firetrail. Stay on this track until you reach the bunkers.

Catherine Hill Bay Bunkers
View from on top of the Catherine Hill Bay Bunkers

There are two bunkers here which you can explore and have a look through. The north bunker also has a rope attached to the roof and if you’re feeling adventurous you can climb the bunker and see an amazing view of Pinny Beach.

shark hole lake macquarie
Climbing into Shark hole

These are the best options for finding Shark Hole in Wallarah National Park. However, there are many more options available as there are countless tracks in this national park. Please remember to stay safe, do not go alone and leave no trace if you enter this chasm.

While close by find out what there’s to do on the Central Coast.


Sign up for our newsletter and stay up to date


Leave a Comment