Blackstone River Watershed

Gateway to Massachusetts and Rhode Island Mirror carp

From it's humble beginning in Worcester, Mass , to where it meets the ocean in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, the Blackstone River produces many of the mirror carp caught in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Named after the Reverend William Blaxton, the first European to settle in the Boston and Rhode Island area, it soon became one of the most industrialized rivers in the United States. In 1790 Samuel Slater built Slater Mill, America's first textile mill, at Pawtucket Falls. Water from the river powered the mill and the industrial revolution was born. 

Once named, Massachusetts most polluted river, the efforts of the government and many private organizations have worked to improve water quality. Today's river is much cleaner and in 1998 was designated an American Heritage Area.

Typical mirror carp Blackstone River

There are many ponds and lakes throughout the Blackstone River Valley. The majority of them hold carp, with some holding fish to 40 pounds.  Unlike most rivers in Massachusetts where common carp numbers are greater than mirror carp, here in the Blackstone River systems it is reversed. Here mirror carp dominate the catch 10-1. Some of the lakes and ponds hold the bigger fish, but the main river has it's share of 20 pound fish. A 42 pound fish from the system held the MA state record for some time.

Carp Anglers Group Chairman, Mike Dragone of Connecticut holds a 16 pound mirror caught in one of the many lakes that make up the Blackstone River system.

Not only are the fish beautiful but so aren't the waters you fish in.

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Mirrors of all sizes and scale patterns grace the waters from Worcester to Pawtucket. Just ask Rhode Island Chairman, Dave Pickering. (lower left) "Lots of nice mirror carp on our end of the river." says Dave. "This is my 100th mirror carp this year from the Blackstone and I'll have 200 before the year is through!" Massachusetts Co-Chairman, Larry Ryan (Bottom right) joins ,CAG members gbudd (top right)and Lockman21(top left), all proudly holding their Blackstone mirrors.

Mary holds a fully scaled mirror that tipped the scales at 25 pounds 9 ounces.  "I have all the boys on the Blackstone beat this year." crowed Mary. "And I deserve it too. All kidding aside this is my best fish ever."

Mirror carp are like snowflakes no two are exactly alike. Many of the fish are fully scaled, but many different patterns will always keep you surprised.

And just to prove there are commons in there, Mary pulls out a nice 10 pound fish. Most commons we have caught here are under 6 pounds.

"Some grandmothers like to sit and knit. Me, I like to hear the scream of the bite alarm." says Mary. "It takes my mind off my job and just makes my day." "The best part about fishing is the time I get to spend with my husband. Then I know he can't lie about the size of his fish."

We have been fishing with hair rigs and method. Baits include Scopex corn, Bobs flavored corns, sweet corn, popup boilies, and many different flavored K-1 boilies have all worked for us. Anise extract in the method seemed to work well also.


Want to catch mirror carp? Want to see some beautiful scenery? Want to spend some quality time with your loved ones? Then check out the Blackstone River Valley waterways. From north to south there are over 50 miles of river and many more lakes and ponds to choose from. All can produce good fish for the patient fisherman. Remember to pre-bait whenever possible. This increases your chance to catch fish.