Black Rock State Park
Black Rock State Park is a recreation destination just outside Waterbury. Tucked into the scenic hills of the Western Highlands. The first European settlements in the Black Rock area began in 1657, when the Paugussett Indians handed over mineral rights to settlers looking for graphite deposits. Though very little was found, the area became known as Black Rock. Today, hikers can climb the Blue-Blazed Mattatuck Trail up the hilltops to inspect the large exposed rock up close and will note the spectacular cream and light gray colors as well as the flakes of mica. Many park visitors will stay on level ground, though, to enjoy swimming and fishing at Sand Dam Pond where the sandy beaches are inviting to sunbathers and the well-stocked waters are a treat for anglers. Large open fields are also an attraction for a variety of sports and activities, and even play host to events such as Native American powwows, AKC dog shows and track-and-field meets. Guests wishing to stay overnight at the park have plenty of opportunities with nearly 100 sites situated in a variety of environments from open areas to wooded groves. Pets on a leash are permitted in picnic areas and on hiking trails. Pets are not allowed on the beach or in the campground.
There are 96 sites in a wooded setting that are available in Black Rock Campground. The camping season begins in mid-April and ends September 30.
Black Rock is a designated Trout Park, so one important activity at the park is stream and pond fishing.
Excellent hiking is available on the Mattatuck Trail from the Grey Stone section of Waterbury to the Wigwam Reservoir in Morris. This trail offers a scenic view of the Naugatuck Valley, highlighting Black Rock. There are many side trails where one can see Black Rock Lake, Black Rock Pond, mature forests and meadows. Hikes can be from 30 minutes to all day.
With a number of picnic tables and even a food concession stand, Black Rock State Park is the perfect place for a picnic.
With a beach, swimming at Black Rock State Park is the perfect place to spend a summer day.
Ice Fishing and snowshoeing are popular winter activities. The park even hosts a winter festival in February.
The park is open from 8 a.m. to sunset. Gates are open on weekends only, from the third Saturday in April until Memorial Day, 8 a.m. to sunset. From Memorial Day to October 31st, they are open daily between 8 a.m. and sunset.
From Route 8 north: take Exit 38. Turn left at the end of the exit ramp to first traffic light. Turn left at traffic light onto US Route 6 west. Park entrance is a 1/2 mile on the right on US Route 6. From Route 8 south: take Exit 38. Go straight ahead at the end of the exit ramp to US Route 6 west. Park entrance is on the right.