Uloola track – karloo pools

Uloola track – karloo pools


walking distance: 5.0 km
duration: 0:00 h
walking: 0:00 h
elevation diff: m
location: royal national park
driving distance: 70 km
driving time: 1 h
water available: yes
parking: -34.0879,151.0086

gps tracks

Total distance: 4987 m
Max elevation: 0 m
Min elevation: 0 m
Total climbing: 0 m
Download file: karloo.gpx


Track notes

karloo pools is supposed to be nice and it is only 2.5km from the car.
it is most likely fairly busy place in the summer

Uloola Track (Heathcote to Waterfall)



“Karloo Pools are nice but rest of the track is pretty ‘meh'”

Walk Highlights

Uloola Track (Heathcote to Waterfall)
  • Distance: 11 km one way
  • Time: 4-5 hours
  • Location: Royal National Park, Sydney, near Heathcote train station
  • Facilities: Toilets and camping at Uloola Falls
  • Getting There: Catch a train to Heathcote from Central Station
  • Highlights: Swimming at Karloo Pools, sitting above the waterfall at Uloola


Walking Track Description

If you’re looking for a longer bush walk near Sydney, or an easy two-day walk with overnight camping, then try the Uloola Track, in the Royal National Park. At just over 11 kms long, the trail begins at Heathcote train station and ends at Waterfall train station, so it’s easily accessed with a train from the city. The walk includes a number of small creek crossings, swimming pools and a waterfall (seasonal) near the camping area.

Heathcote to Karloo Pools

From Heathcote train station, head east to Wilson St and past the Fire Brigade (SES) buldings to the start of the Karloo track. Descending away from the train station, the walking trail soon crosses Heathcote Brook and then climbs across broad rock shelfs to a ridge.

The trail follows this ridge east along a valley for about 2 kms until it crosses Heathcote Brook again, at Karloo Pools. A great spot for a swim and a picnic, Karloo Pools are a collection of freshwater billabongs formed at a sharp bend in Heatthcote Brook. There is plenty of leafy shade covering the flat rocks around the pools, which support all manner of birds and lizards.

Karloo Pools to Uloola Falls

Another 2.5 kms on from Karloo Pools is the camp ground at Uloola Falls. From Karloo Pools, the Uloola Track climbs up the valley for about 1 km, before heading across a rocky plateau at the top. Keep a close eye out for the yellow and red stripes painted on rocks that show the way across the plateau, as the track is easy to lose in places.  Eventually the track leaves the plateau, descending south east towards Heathcote Brook and Uloola Falls.

Uloola Falls Campground

This basic camping area has a toilet and enough space for about 6 tents, there is no water available (unless you boil/treat water from the brook) and fires are not permitted. Booking must be made with NPWS on 02 9542 068.

Uloola Falls to Waterfall

From the campsite, follow the walking signs up and over a  rocky  ridge for about 0.5 km. Flattening out, the track joins a wide, sandy fire trail which winds all the way back to the cricket oval behind Waterfall station, 5 km away. At the cricket oval, look to the west for signs highlighting the last stretch of the track to the train station.

Walking Trail Map


Royal National Park

Closed areas: Bungoona path closed for track upgrade
Some parts of this park are closed from Monday 20 May to Friday 14 June 2024 while Bungoona path walking track is being upgraded. There will be no access to Bungoona Path for the duration of the work.
Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, contact the local NPWS office on 02 9542 0632.

Closed areas: Lady Carrington Drive closed to vehicles
Lady Carrington Drive is closed to vehicles until further notice. One section of the trail has slumped due to recent flooding, causing the trail surface to become uneven and unstable.
This area has been highlighted by traffic cones and danger tape. Please navigate this area on Lady Carrington Drive with caution.
For more information, contact the NPWS Royal National Park area office on 02 9542 0632.

Closed areas: Multiple carparks and picnic areas closed in Audley
Wattle Forest, Figtree and Willow Tree picnic areas and carparks in Audley are closed due to flooding impacts. These areas will re-open as soon as it is considered safe.
Other areas within Audley are open, however surfaces are waterlogged. Please exercise caution, particularly in carparks, due to the wet and muddy conditions.
Remember, it’s never safe to drive, ride or walk through flood waters. Check Live Traffic NSW for up-to-date information about road closures. For assistance during severe weather visit the NSW SES website. In life-threatening situations call emergency services on Triple Zero (000).
Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, contact the Royal National Park Visitor Centre on 9542 0648.

Other planned events: 1080 pest management
NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service will be conducting an aerial baiting program using dried meat baits containing 1080 poison (sodium fluroacetate) for the control of foxes. The program will occur from Wednesday 5 to Saturday 8 June 2024 in Royal National Park.
All baiting locations are identifiable by signs. Don’t touch baits.
Domestic pets are not permitted in NSW national parks and reserves. Pets and working dogs may be affected (1080 is lethal to cats and dogs). Pets and working dogs must be restrained or muzzled in the vicinity and must not enter the baiting location. In the event of accidental poisoning seek immediate veterinary assistance.
Fox baiting in this reserve is aimed at improving the eco-health of the reserve by reducing predation of ground dwelling mammals and small birds, and specifically targeting fox control along the Hacking River to assist the successful re-introduction of platypus into Royal National Park.
Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, contact the NPWS Audley office on 02 9542 0632 (business hours)or the NPWS after-hours call centre on 1300 056 294 (after hours).

Other planned events: Ironbark Flat partially closed for turf refurbishment
Post-flood turf repairs will be taking place at Ironbark Flat picnic area from 12 June 2024. Some sections of the picnic area, particularly near the river foreshore, will be closed to allow for the repair and for new turf to establish. Please take note of signage and barriers in place protecting the work area. It is expected that the picnic area will be fully open for use by the end of August.
For further information, please contact Royal National Park Visitor Centre on 9542 0648.

Closed areas: Areas closed for deer control program
Some areas in Royal National Park are closed to the public between sunset and sunrise from Wednesday 30 May to Friday 29 December 2024 to enable a deer control operation to be carried out.
The affected areas include:

  • All picnic areas in the Audley precinct
  • Asset protection zones adjacent to Maianbar, Bundeena and East Heathcote.
  • Wattamolla and Garie picnic areas
  • North Era campground and coastal areas between Garie Beach and Figure 8 Pools
  • Garrawarra Farm
  • Lady Carrington Drive
  • Bonnie Vale campground and picnic area.
These closures will be signposted at entry points to the closed areas. If you have approved bookings to camp you can still access campsites during these times.
Ground shooting will not take place during school holidays or on weekends or public holidays.
Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, contact the Royal National Park Visitor Centre on 02 9542 0648.

Closed areas: The Coast track partial closure
Walking the full length of The Coast track from Otford to Bundeena or Bundeena to Otford is not currently possible. This is due to several track closures along its length. These closures are necessary due to erosion and rockfall risk, and to allow ongoing track upgrade works.
Please note the following closures:
  • Palm Jungle Loop track between Burning Palms and Werrong lookout is closed from Tuesday 16 January to Sunday 30 June 2024 for track upgrades.
  • The Garie to Little Garie section of The Coast track is closed due to hazardous rockfalls and erosion.
  • North Era campground is closed until further notice
  • Garie Road, Garie Beach and the Garie precinct is closed until further notice. This is due to damage and subsidence to the road surface. Walkers approaching from the north (e.g. from Wattamolla or Bundeena) should exit the track via Curra Moors track.
Bushwalker access is available for the following sections of The Coast track:
  • South bound access - Bundeena to Curra Moors track via Wattamolla and return only. No access to Garie Beach.
  • North bound access - Available via North Era and return only. Access is via Garawarra Farm Ridge trail and Burgh Ridge track during track upgrades.
  • Figure 8 Pools access - Available via Garawarra Ridge trail and Burgh Ridge track via Garawarra Farm only.  
For further information please contact the Royal National Park Visitor Centre on 02 9542 0648.

Closed areas: Werrong Beach track
Werrong Beach track in Royal National Park is closed until further notice due to landslides. Signs will be in place around the closed area.
Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, contact the local NPWS office.

Closed areas: North Era campground closed
North Era campground is closed until further notice due to operational activities. For more information please contact the local area office on 02 9542 0648.

Safety alerts: Curra Moors track in poor condition
Sections of Curra Moors loop track are in poor condition due to erosion. Please use caution and be aware of unstable edges.
Planning for repairs is in progress. For more information, contact the Royal National Park Visitor Centre on 02 9542 0648.

Closed areas: Garie Road closed due to damage
Garie Road is closed until further notice due to damage to the road surface.
This road may remain closed for some time to allow for extensive repairs. A reopening date is not currently known.
Penalties apply for non-compliance. Please check Live Traffic NSW for updates before driving to Garie Beach.



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