White River (10/25/09)

We had reached the final day of our 4 day trip to the White River, and on most last days we generally fish around wherever we are staying until about 9am or so and get on the road; but we opted to float from the Dam to Gaston’s boat ramp again this morning.

We rose early and filled our bellies with the last of Gaston’s Biscuits & Gravy that we will have this trip and headed off to the boat ramp, we were fishing by 6:40am (little did we know that David forgot the keys to our shuttle vehicle inside of the rig at the ramp) and had a fish on the very first cast / drift.

The fishing was very similar to what we had seen the previous days.  Enough “dink” rainbows to get bored with it on Tungsten B.H. San Juan Worm and Glo Ball Egg under a Thingamabobber indicator.  Craig did throw a B.H. Wolly Bugger into the mix later on the drift and picked up an aerobatic rainbow or two.  The wind picked up as we reached the bottom of Cane Island, and that was enough for us to essentially reel end and row out to the ramp (when we discovered we didn’t have keys for the shuttle vehicle).  Big props to Jim @ Gaston’s who works in the maintenance department as he gave us a ride up to get our rig as Craig stayed with the boat.  I know Gaston’s sometimes gets a bad wrap on the White River, and their drink prices and non-breakfast food is expensive as all hell but thier customer service is spot on and i was really impressed with the response I got when I asked a cleaning crew staff member what the chances were of hitching a rid up to the Dam.  Kudos to them for sure.

All in all it was a great 4 days on the White River, as Craig and I headed for St. Louis around 11:15am or so and hit rain by the time we got on Hwy 63 and drove in it most of the way.  I can’t wait to do this trip again.

5 thoughts on “White River (10/25/09)

  1. I’ve stayed at Gaston’s many times over the years (one of the only places that will let you bring two slobbering Labradors to sleep on the couch when you’re out fishing)and have always been treated very well. I like to camp at BS State park when it’s just me, but when the Mrs. goes it’s a good excuse to be comfortable.

    I’m really liking your new format, too.

    • I was having this exact conversation with Jim Traylor (who used to guide for them many moons ago before he started fly-fishing) while we were down there. I think Gaston’s gets a bad wrap as being pro-bait fishing and catch and keep but a system as large as the white needs a portion of that as an effective management tool (not that the AGFC is doing a great job right now…the way they are ignoring the Norfork but I digress). Gaston’s does alot of good for the river too. There aren’t too many land owners that own that much frontage and have chosen to protect it to a large extent. The customer service they provide to those staying there is really top-notch. My beef with them is the pricing in the restaurant / bar for lunch and dinner is very ridiculous for mediocre food. It is one of a few places that this fat man had ever seriously though about asking for his money back; but because of thier great customer service I knew that they would have given it to me….and that would be right either. Thanks for the comments on the new layout….there are going to be a few more changes to keep the content a little fresher and what not as well, so glad you like it.

  2. That’s too bad – every time I’ve ate there it was really good. Coming from some of my experience in the restaurant biz I think that one of the hardest things to keep consistently top notch is the food quality – no matter how well it’s prepared or how good the service is.
    You are right about them do have a rep as “catch and cook” type place, but I’d rather have a guide making a living helping people have a good time within the law and concentrate on things like poachers and minimum flow.
    Besides, I honeymooned there, so I kind of have a soft spot for the place.

  3. Dude. How is the river after the improvements below the dam. I see you didn’t land any of the HUGE ones but four days on the white is close to heaven.

    • FatMan…..long time no hear. How have you been (drop me an email).

      The improvements below the dam are nice, but not near as extensive as I had hoped they would be. To be quite honest, I don’t think that they have done much (it made floating / fishing river left from the base to the golf course boat ramp a bit tougher / challenge) but it did add some structure in there (although alot of it got washed downstream already because it wasn’t properly anchored).

      You should put the first weekend in February on the calendar and head down to the White with us.


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