Trips On A Tankful: Gore & Vian

Tuesday, April 13th 2021, 4:53 pm

GORE, Oklahoma -

As the sun rises over the lower Illinois River at Marval Resort in Gore, as a girls' trout fishing trip gets started.

It is Donavan Clary’s favorite place to fish in the region.

“It’s my favorite place in the region to fish,” Clary said.

And Gore calls itself the “Trout Capital of Oklahoma.”

It even says it on the sign.

Tess Maune and her friends Jackie, Joni, and Danna tested the waters, which can make fly fishing tough.

Scott Hood with Oklahoma Trout Unlimited helped on this trip.

“The water is coming up instead of going down, but we’re giving it a shot anyways,” Hood said.

And there was quite the show in the process.

Oklahoma’s Own photojournalist Michael Woods spotted an eagle on this trip.

“That was an eagle!” Woods exclaimed.

“I’ve never seen an eagle that low, and coming down in front of all of us,” Jackie stated. “It was like ‘here, stop and embrace this.’”

And the group did just that until there was a tug on the line.

The group all got bites with the help of some great guides.

The next stop on this trip was less than 10 miles away, for a workout and some shopping in Vian, Oklahoma.

It’s a small town with some big city appeal.

Lyndsey Sullivan owns The Field House.

“We are getting lots of foot traffic because we are one of the only gyms in Oklahoma to get and carry Lululemon,” Sullivan said.

And The Field House is Vian’s first ever gym.

“it’s no longer a luxury item; exercise, to me, is a necessity,” Sullivan said. “That’s what we are here for, just giving access to community health that small towns don’t have.”

She and her husband restored a 100-year-old building that was an od hardware store following a trend to revitalize the town.

And that started with a boutique.

“Morning Sky was the business that put Vian on the map because of the amount of brands they hold here,” said Kenyatta Wright.

Kenyatta Wright is a former NFL player who now lives back in his hometown running several businesses and serving as the Greater Tenkiller Area Association Executive Director.

Wright said Lake Tenkiller, which is just a few miles away, draws people in.

“It’s the crown jewel of this area,” Wright expressed. “But the people in the community keep visitors coming back.”

“We want people to stop. We really invite people to live this town out with us and that’s why hospitality and the way we treat people is so important,” Wright said. “And our town and our community lives by that.”

And the trip continues with an hour drive south to the hills of Heavener.

The next stop is Runestone Park where a Swedish inscribed runestone, which is believed to represent the date November 11, 1012, suggests possible Viking exploration in Oklahoma.

There is so much to see. So, grab your friends or family and hit the road for an adventure you can only find in Oklahoma.