Turkey Day Trout & Black Friday Bassin’

Fishing over the Thanksgiving holiday is a great way to bond with family and avoid the insanity of “Black Friday.”

In my book there’s no better place than the cathedral of woods and waters in which to pray, meditate and give thanks.

You see where I’m going with this?

Yep, let’s go fishing on Thanksgiving.

I know what you’re thinking, “There’s no way she’s going to …”

Here’s the deal: Get up before dawn and you’ll have enough time to fish and still return home in time to drop the bird in the deep fryer (or complete whatever job you’ve been assigned.)

Yeah, probably a hard sell. But if grandma’s cooking, way easier to pull off.

Guess that’s why the guys in this fun video keep mentioning they have a lot to be thankful for. Fast-paced coho, brown, rainbow and steelie action on Thanksgiving morning doesn’t hurt either.

Working an unnamed Lake Ontario tributary, the duo definitely knows the multi-species benefits of fishing marabou jigs tipped with waxies below floats. Want to try the technique yourself? Here’s some good info to get you started!

You have to hand it to them for their catch and release efforts—kudos to the boys for not going AWOL on grandma. It can be hard to leave a hot and heavy bite, even for steaming mashed potatoes and roast turkey!

Yes, Thanksgiving morning fishing can be dangerous. Remember: “happy wife, happy life.” And to you single anglers out there—just continue doing whatever you want whenever you want. Shut up and fish. Your life is not that complicated.

But married or not, I suggest bypassing the near-looting experience that’s become Black Friday. All that madness for more disposable consumer electronics? Not in my world. But give me 50 to 75 percent off a new boat or ATV and sure, I’ll camp out in the cold, stand in a line around the block, whatever. But I digress.

This year marks the first that we haven’t celebrated Thanksgiving at my in-laws’ in Iowa. And that’s got me a little down, primarily because part of that tradition was Black Friday bassin’. The good news is we’ll all be together this year, just farther north in Minnesota where ice fishing is already game on.

One Black Friday stands out. Two years ago, rather than launch the boat, we worked the edges of the quarry on foot, casting Boss football head jigs with creature skirts and working ledges backwards, as in deep to shallow.

We caught a half dozen fish in the 4- to 6-pound range and lots of smaller fish. My bass fishing newbie brother-in-law caught and released the toad in this pic, which was probably over six pounds. Just proves that sometimes fishing from shore can be the right way to fish, boat or no boat.

Definitely a Black Friday to remember.

While we won’t be bass fishing this Black Friday, here in Minnesota there’s a good chance we will get out on the ice for crappies, ‘gills, maybe even a walleye or two. But whatever the result, we’ll be having fun as a family -- creating new memories, working up an appetite and giving thanks.

Not a bad way to earn that that post-dinner nap.

Hey, think about some fishing time this Thanksgiving holiday with your favorite relatives … just don’t be late for dinner.


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