Summary: The Yankee Hat Rock Art Site in Namadgi National Park consists of 18 motifs, in white and red ochre, representing a range of animals as well human-like forms. It's reached by a 6km return bushwalk.

The Yankee Hat Rock Art Site is the only publicly accessible Aboriginal rock art site in the ACT, which is reached by the short Yankee Hat bushwalk. Nearby habitation shelters have been carbon-dated and show that the local Ngunnawal people were camping here at least 800 years ago, and potentially as much as 3,700 years ago. The rock art is on the side of a large granite boulder, near the base of the Yankee Hat peak, which has been rounded off and under-cut by weathering.

Note: the shelter has been closed since January 2022, and is expected to re-open in mid 2024.

The Yankee Hat motifs include animals, as well as some abstract and human-like figures, painted in clay (white) and red (based on iron oxide or ‘ochre’ – the nearest known ochre quarries being at at Michelago and Gungahlin). The group below is thought to consist of a kangaroo, an echidna or turtle, a dingo and a human with an outlined head in white. The red figures are another (elongated) human and multiple birds (emus or brolgas).

1X3A6054 LR Yankee Hat - the only accessible Aboriginal rock site in the ACT1X3A6054 LR lbk Yankee Hat - the only accessible Aboriginal rock site in the ACT

The kangaroo is the largest figure in the group below.

This group is thought to represent a kangaroo, wombat or koala (the largest figure), next to three human-like forms (one of them is barely visible).

The figures were painted in groupings which may describe relationships between the different figures, and the their meanings may have varied according to the viewer’s level of initiation into tribal tradition.

Getting to the Yankee Hat Rock Art Site

The signposted Yankee Hat Walking Track starts from Old Boboyan Road, which is off Boboyan Road (a 4WW is recommended if it’s been raining, as there are a couple of fords). There is a signposted carpark just before a lockled gate. The bushwalk is about 6km return on a good track.

More information

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