Summary: Shark Rock Ridge has a series of Aboriginal engraving sites, most of which were documented by Campbell in 1899 and McCarthy in 1960. A few shelters with art and additional engraving sites were recorded more recently.

Most of the Shark Rock Ridge track follows a ridge that runs between the Yatala Trig and Want Trig, which is now dissected by the Pacific Motorway. It’s an area with many Aboriginal rock art sites, primarily along the top of the ridge.

Adult and Young Emu

Just above the freeway is an Aboriginal engraving site on a small rock platform, which has an Adult Emu and Young Emu. They are both fairly weathered.

Fishing or Hunting Scene

McCarthy suggested the men at this rock engraving site were “hunting the kangaroo rats or are engaged in fishing”.

Engraving Mankind Group 98
Stingray Two kangaroos Kangaroo Emu Emu Emu Man and Boomerang Two fish

Stingray

AWAT2421 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Stingray or skate which is 7'6" in length, with a bar across its body and a median strip down its tail.

Two kangaroos

AWAT2419 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Above the stingray are two kangaroos; one of them is described as a young kangaroo with no tail.

Kangaroo

AWAT2436 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Emu

AWAT2431 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of three emus in file

Emu

AWAT2430 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of three emus in file

Emu

AWAT2426 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of three emus in file

Man and Boomerang

AWAT2405 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

A man ("tall, upright, long and narrow half oval head, no eyes, straight arms upraised") next to an angled boomerang.

Two fish

AWAT2408 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Two fish, both very weathered.

There are 22 figures including kangaroos and kangaroo rats, emus, a stingray, fish and a man with a sword club or boomerang.

Whale

This enormous whale is over ten metres in length, with a goanna and whale inside the outline of the figure. Parts of the whale have been “corrected”, with at least one fin showing two sets of carved lines.

Koalas and Shields

This interesting Aboriginal engraving site along Shark Rock was thought to represent “a hunting incident in the mythology or a totemic ritual”.

Koalas and Shields
Koala Shield Shield Shield Shield Koala Legless Bird Oval Man

Koala

AWAT2452 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

A composite human-koala figure

Shield

AWAT2456 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of four shields

Shield

AWAT2459 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of four shields

Shield

AWAT2462 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of four shields

Shield

AWAT2466 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

One of our shields

Koala

AWAT2486 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Despite the appearance of a Daramulan, this figure was described as a "koala bear"

Legless Bird

AWAT2479 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

A legless bird - or an emu?

Oval

AWAT2488 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

an oval shaped figure - or basket?

Man

AWAT2468 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Very weathered figure of a man.

The most prominent carvings are two koala bears (one with a human-like foot), which look very much like Daramulan figures.

There are 14 figures in total, including four shields, part of a man, a legless bird (or emu?) and an oval (or basket?).

Deity

On a thin strip of rock surrounded by dense scrub is a deity figure, described by Campbell as “that of the protective deity, holding up a fish with the right hand” and by McCarthy as “A mythological incident and a site of sacred importance”. Much of the figure is covered by debris & vegetation.

Man and Shields

A small site below the ridge, which has two shields and a small man who is “a unique figure with his bent legs” (this motif couldn’t be located).

Ledge Engravings

A ritual or mythological Aboriginal engraving site, with six figures including a man with “the largest and most distinct mouth in a human figure yet found in the Sydney-Hawkesbury engravings”.

Mankind Group 101
Fish Leaping Wallaby Goanna

Fish

AWAT2532 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

Leaping Wallaby

AWAT2530 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

A "well posed animal"

Goanna

AWAT2526 LR Shark Rock Ridge Engraving sites

The six figures are found along a long ledge, over a distance of 30 metres, with a pothole and axe grinding grooves at the southern end.

Shark Rock Ridge Aboriginal rock art sites

Site NameReferenceNo. MotifsMotifs
Adult and Young EmuMcCarthy Mankind Group 992Emus
Hunting or Fishing SceneMcCarthy Mankind Group 9822Kangaroos, stingray, man
WhaleMcCarthy Group 164
Campbell Plate 25 Fig 4
3Whale, goanna, man
Koalas and ShieldsMcCarthy Group 162
Campbell Plate 25 Fig 5
14Koalas, shields, bird
DeityMcCarthy Group 163
Campbell Plate 25 Fig 6
2Deity holding a fish
Man and ShieldsMcCarthy Mankind Group 1003Man, shields
Ledge EngravingsMcCarthy Mankind Group 1016Man, goanna, fish, jellyfish

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Aboriginal Sites by National Park

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There are over 350 Aboriginal engraving and sites recorded in the Central Coast region, many of these in the Brisbane Water National Park.
Yengo National Park was an important spiritual and cultural place for the Darkinjung and Wonnarua People for thousands of years, and 640 Aboriginal cultural sites are recorded in the park and nearby areas.