Thursday, April 16, 2015

Gaston's Shore Lunch

As spectacular as the trout fishing can be on the White River, neither plentiful rainbows nor big browns are what I hear the most talk about from friends I fish there with each spring. As folks anticipate the annual Gaston's media event, arrive at the resort, head out each morning, and look back on the trip, the thing I hear about the most is the shore lunch.

That's understandable, and in truth it may be the thing I talk about the most. Anyone who is part of our group for the first time probably hears, "Just wait for the shore lunch!" from a dozen people before the first day's lunch occurs.

The food itself is spectacular and includes a portion of the morning's trout catch, fried chicken or the best pork tenderloins anyone has ever cooked, plus and amazing spread of sides a couple of varieties of cobbler to top off the meal. The event goes way past the meal itself though and includes seeing the guides clean the trout boatside, watching the chefs fry the fish over coals to a perfect golden brown, and then walking down the buffet, which is served in a White River style johnboat under a big riverside pavilion and filling plates.

The shore lunch is also about trading stories and passing around cameras and cell phones to share photos as everyone recharges a bit and anticipates the afternoon's fishing session. There's something spectacularly fun about sitting at picnic table and enjoying the morning catch while exchanging stories about fish caught, big ones that got a way and usually an amusing mishap or two -- and all with the river right there, offering a reminder of what awaits after lunch.

Eventually everyone finds their way down the boats, refueled for round two. Though almost too stuffed to move, pretty much everyone is already looking forward to the next day's (or next year's) shore lunch, and most are likely talking about how good it always is, even as they begin fishing again.

To learn more, visit the website for Gaston's White River Resort.

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