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Fisherville

42° 10.609' N    71° 41.3' W   See this location in: Google Maps   Map Server   Acme Maps

Google Maps is the mapping system used on the new ExploreRI mapper and shows the access site located on a terrain view, a street map or an aerial photograph. Clicking on this link will take you to the full Google Maps website, which is not part of ExploreRI.
Map Server shows a topographic map of the area. The Map Server website is not part of ExploreRI.org.
Acme Maps shows the access site located on a topographic map. The Acme Maps website is not part of ExploreRI.org.

This is a site for launching hand-carried boats such as canoes or kayaks.

Description & Overview:

This site provides access to the Blackstone River a little below the Fisherville Dam. Park in the parking lot for the Mill Villages Park. Right next to the parking lot is a section of the old canal, or possibly an old talerace from the mill that used to stand across the street. However, to get to the river you will have to walk a bit more. Go to the picnic shelter and from there look for a dirt path leading down into the scrubby woods near the river. In about 250 feet you should see a simple, gray bench on the left. One possible put-in is just behind this bench. Another is a little further down the path. Which is best will depend on the river level and the state of the vegetation.

The river below here is a mix of flatwater and occasional quickwater, with some Class I whitewater. 0.6 miles below Fisherville there is a difficult portage in Farnumsville, above the Depot Street Bridge, around an old wooden dam.

The riverbanks below Fisherville alternate between clusters of houses and mill buildings and long stretches where the banks are wooded and rural.

For paddling this section of the Blackstone a more detailed guide is necessary then this website can provide. You should use the AMC River Guide or a similar book and only paddle this section of the river if you are an experienced paddler.

Note that in the sources for more information below, the Blackstone Heritage Corridor website has good general information about paddling on the Blackstone, but their excellent maps do not cover this part of the river yet. Their first map starts at Plummer's Landing, 5 miles down the river from Fisherville.

NOTE: There are ongoing issues with pollution in the Blackstone River. Great strides have been made in cleaning up the river relative to where it was a generation or two ago but under some conditions the water may still have a noticeable odor.

This site provides access to the following water bodies in the Blackstone River watershed: Blackstone River.

Location:

Alternate Site Name: Main Street, Grafton

Town: Grafton

Nearest Town Center: Grafton, MA

Driving Landmarks: This put-in is right on Route 122A in Grafton, 0.5 miles west of the junction with Route 122. Park in the parking lot for the Mill Villages Park on the west side of the river.

Access & Waters:

Water 'Features' At Site: dam, whitewater, flatwater/slow moving river

Note: Because one boat launch can access, say, both a lake and a river or both the upstream and downstream portions of a river, not all paddling trips at a given site will necessarily encounter all of the features listed.

Type of Access: Boat launch for hand carried boats

ADA Accessible Boat Launch? no

Shoreline: Sand and gravel

Float/Dock: no

Approximate Length of Carry between Car Access and Water: 350 feet

Parking:

Parking: parking lot, 30 spaces

ADA Accessible Parking Spaces? no

Sources for More Information:

AMC River Guide: 4th edition pages 150-151

Website: Blackstone Heritage Corridor National Park - Get On the River Page

Photographs:

Mill Villages Park

Mill Villages Park

Photography by: Bruce Hooke

Date of Photograph: September 18, 2020

 
The Entrance to the Parking Lot at Mill Villages Park

The Entrance to the Parking Lot at Mill Villages Park

Photography by: Bruce Hooke

Date of Photograph: September 18, 2020

 
The Path to the River from near the Picnic Shelter

The Path to the River from near the Picnic Shelter

Photography by: Bruce Hooke

Date of Photograph: September 18, 2020

 
One Possible Put-In

One Possible Put-In

Photography by: Bruce Hooke

Date of Photograph: September 18, 2020

Note that this photograph was made in September, during a drought. The river is usually higher than this here.

 
View Down River from Fisherville

View Down River from Fisherville

Photography by: Bruce Hooke

Date of Photograph: November 3, 2008

This is a view downriver from the bridge at Fisherville. The put-in is beyond the screen of small trees in the center of this photograph.

 
View Up River Towards the Fisherville Dam

View Up River Towards the Fisherville Dam

Photography by: Bruce Hooke

Date of Photograph: November 3, 2008

This view up river from the bridge at Fisherville shows the Fisherville Dam, which must be portaged if you are coming down river to Fisherville.

 

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The data on this website come from many sources, including volunteers and organizations across the state of Rhode Island and nearby parts of Massachusetts. We have done our best to make sure the data are accurate and up to date, but any information critical to the success of your trip should be confirmed before you start. The maps and information on this website should not be substituted for nautical charts, topographic maps, or other more detailed maps and guides. We welcome corrections and additions. To send a correction or provide other feedback, please use our feedback form (see link above).

This site report was last updated on September 21, 2020

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