NOTICE: AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL PASSES AVAILABLE AT WEST HILL DAM ARE BY APPOINTMENT ONLY
Please call Ranger Viola directly at (978) 318-8417 or leave your name in number in the general phone voice mail box at (508) 278-2511. Please note rangers have five duty days and two days off per week. If you do not receive a call within 48 hours please call back.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers welcomes you to West Hill Dam year-round. Parking for all visitors is located at the project office at 518 East Hartford Ave in Uxbridge. Park rangers are available to assist during your visit.
The day use area also known as West Hill Park is accessible by walking one mile from the project office. The West River widens to form Harrington Pool at the center of the day use area. Tables and grills are available for picnicking in two different areas, one near the beach and one under a grove of pines. Two picnic shelters on a wooded knoll, with electric are available to groups for a small fee. A sand volleyball court, horseshoe pits and accessible playground are nearby.
There are over seven miles of hiking and mountain bike trails that meander through the woodlands and grasslands and provide secluded views of the river. Anglers will find trout in the main river channel and bass, pickerel and horned pout in the pools. Hunting for deer, small game and upland birds is permitted in accordance with state laws. Trout and pheasant are stocked seasonally by the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife.
Fees and Reservations
West Hill Park offers two shelters, one with ten tables that will accommodate a group up to about 100 people, while the other has 4 tables and hosts about 30 people comfortably.
Park Rangers offer nature programs and are always available to answer questions.
The West River winds through some 567 acres of white pine and red oak forest, broken here and there by rolling meadows. Red maple swamps and several bogs fill the lowlands while three small brooks feed the river. Park Rangers manage the woodlands to improve fish and wildlife habitat.
Woods, fields, wetlands and streams provide habitat for both resident and migratory wildlife. Red fox, raccoon, deer and an occasional coyote find protection in the woods. Open fields attract rabbits, mice, butterflies, hawks and owls. Streams and wetlands are home to fish, spring peepers, box turtles and great blue herons, among others.
The diverse habitat makes it one of the finest birding areas in Worcester county with over 200 species sighted annually. Spring and fall migrations bring the greatest diversity of species, with waterfowl and wading birds resting along the river, while herons and rails poke among the stream side plants for food. Winter visitors can listen for hoots of early-nesting owls and look for flocks of sparrows, juncos, chickadees, cedar wax wings and golden-crowned king lets in the snow-covered branches.
NEARBY: Only a mile away is the historic Blackstone Canal. West Hill Dam is located within the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, an affiliated area of the National Park Service. The Corridor, which encompasses 20 cities and towns between Worcester, Massachusetts and Providence, Rhode Island, is the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution.
- Updated: June 1, 2022