The holiday season is crowded with traditions, however for me and a few friends, one rises above rest. Let me share with you about Troutsgiving.

Troutsgiving originated on Thanksgiving Day 2015 when two angling pilgrims (Marshall and I) fled the persecution of sleeping in, sailed (drove) to the shores of a familiar Lancaster County spring creek, and fished for an hour or two before heading on to family gatherings. I don’t think we caught anything, probably because there weren’t any Native Americans around to show us how. Even so, a new tradition was born.

Now in its third year, Troutsgiving has continued and gotten stronger. This year, we added a diner breakfast to the tradition, and a new companion. The weather was cold, and the fishing was tough, but eventually the bright sun warmed the water enough to coax a few trout into taking flies.

The best fishing trips always begin under a neon diner sign.


Marshall with a Troutsgiving brown trout.

In the end, Troutsgiving isn’t even about the trout anyways. It’s about finding a few spare hours on our national day of gratitude to pursue a hobby that we love, with friends we are thankful for.

And remember, if you ever find your traditions aren’t satisfying enough, start your own. Your future self will thank you.


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