Yesterday, I had the pleasure of floating the upper Delaware River with F&S Senior Editor Colin Kearns and guide Gary Henderson from the West Branch Angler. The fishing was pretty good, with as much dry fly action as we could hope for on a cloudy, windy, chilly day. But what I could not have hoped to be better was Henderson’s lunch of choice for a day on the river. Before putting in the float boat, he swung by the local grocery store and picked up a nasty, delicious, dirty, mouth-watering bag of extra-greasy fried chicken. Though it wasn’t always so, I have officially decided that this is the best on-the-water meal going. Here’s why:
Though I’ve been partial to Italian subs for many years, I have often fallen victim to the sub that slips in the cooler’s melt-water and ends up a soggy pile of mayonnaisy mush. Sandwiches of any kind also require some sort of wrapper or bag that makes more trash on board, gives you something extra to clean up, or at worst, ends up in the water. Many pieces of chicken come in a single bag that is often lined with foil to keep them warm…and, though unintended, keep moisture out. The stuff is scrumptious hot or cold, and after you’ve gnawed a thigh to the bone, you can throw it in the drink worry free.
I cannot take credit for the fried chicken idea, as Henderson is one of many guides and anglers who take part in this joyous fishing food, but I have decided it is now my favorite, too. As you can see in the photo above, Henderson sneak-attacks the last piece of chicken while Colin is preoccupied with keeping an eagle eye out for risers. Very smooth. So it’s official. As of today, I declare this dish the official pack lunch of anglers worldwide. Anyone want to argue? — JC