There’s a reason that Grey Hat Falls and Crayfish Pool have become increasingly popular – it’s an incredibly picturesque swimming hole and waterfall ,along a pristine creek. The pool is said to have been “discovered” in the 1970s when it was named “Grey Hat Falls” (it is also referred to as Kanuka Falls and Tin Hat Falls; the pool below the falls was named later.
The waterfall cascades over a number of rock shelves into the pool; you can easily access the base of the falls, but the rocks are fairly slippery.
Crayfish Pool, fed by the pristine Kanuka Brook, has a sandy “beach” providing access to the water on the opposite side of the beach, and the water gets fairly deep near the waterfall.
A rough track along the base of the cliffs (on the eastern side of the creek) takes you to a small cave above the pool – you need to crawl though a low overhang to get there.
The cave frames a nice view of Crayfish Pool – you can return the same way, or use the rope to swing into the pool.
Just above the pool, at the end of the track, is a large overhang. You can descend from here to the base of the falls; or to reach the sandy beach, re-trace your steps about 100m and cross the creek near a shallow, rocky section.
Getting to Grey Hat Falls and Crayfish Pool
The waterfall and swimming hole are reached by a bushwalking track off Red Hands Firetrail – the track is not signposted, but it fairly obvious. There’s a small parking area (also not sign-posted) opposite the start of the trail. It’s about 1km one-way, with the track descending pretty much the whole way – initially fairly gently.
Nearer the bottom of the gully, the track gets steeper and some scrambling is required.
For the last few hundred metres, the track follows Kanuka Brook, before a very short and steep climb up to the large overhang above the pool (for the easiest access to the water, head back along the track, and look for a shallow section of the creek where you can cross to the other side).
The start of the trail (and parking area) is about 13km (25min drive) from Glenbrook, via the Oaks Trail and Red Hands Firetrail – access is during daytime hours (gates are locked overnight):
- First Sunday in October to first Sunday in April 8.30am to 7pm
- Rest of year 8.30am to 6pm
- Cyclists and walkers have 24hr access
The access road also crosses a causeway and may be closed if the river level is high.
- David Noble – Grey Hat Falls Walk