This is a site for launching hand-carried boats and it is also a portage. This typically means that to continue paddling down the river past this site you will have to portage your boat around a dam or other obstruction.
Description & Overview:
Take out on river right just above the dam (if you miss this landing you could be swept over the dam!) and follow the portage trail up across the road next to the dam and down a long slope leading to the river below the dam. Most of the portage trail has hand-rails along both sides.
Singing Dam backs the river up for about a 3/8 mile, creating what is effectively a pond that can be paddled in both directions. Below the dam the river is a mix of flatwater, quickwater and class I-II whitewater. The short sections of class II whitewater can be portaged, but the class I whitewater and quickwater must be run.
Aside from the commercial buildings across the road from the park, the river both above and below here is largely forested, with occasional farm fields, houses and mill buildings visible from the river.
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.
This site provides access to the following water bodies in the Blackstone River watershed: Blackstone River.
Alternate Site Name: Singing Dam
Nearest Town Center: Sutton, MA
Driving Landmarks: From Route 122A turn onto Blackstone Street just north of where Route 122A goes under a railroad bridge. There is a sign for J&G Foods at this turn. Go about 0.2 miles down Blackstone Street, past a small business complex on the right. Tricentennial Park is on the left just before the road crosses the river at Singing Dam.
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
Approximate Length of Carry between Car Access and Water: 50 feet
Portage Length: 300 feet
Parking: parking lot, 10 spaces
ADA Accessible Parking Spaces? yes
Public Restrooms: No
Sources for More Information:
AMC River Guide: 4th edition pages 150-151
Ecological, Cultural & Recreational Attractions:
Tricentennial Park is so named because 2004 was the 300th Anniversary of the founding of the town of Sutton. It is a small, 5-acre park with lovely views up the river, picnic tables, and historic markers.
View up River about a Mile Below Singing Dam
Photography by: Bruce Hooke
Date of Photograph: November 3, 2008
This view from the Depot Street bridge in Wilkinsonville shows (in the distance) the broken down dam about a mile below the Singing Dam. At some water levels this broken down dam can be run. At other levels it must be portaged. Stop and scout to determine whether it is runnable. There is no access to the river from the road at Depot Street.
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 July 26, 2010