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Old 11-10-2013, 10:18 AM   #1
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Tenkara

Admittedly I'm still a novice fly fisherman, but I'm quickly becoming "disenchanted" with all the gizmos and doo-dads associated with the sport. I like to keep it simple and trying to weave my way through the small, rocky, brushy streams here in Western NC with a 10' rod and all the paraphernalia was beginning to become a chore instead of a pastime.

I started looking for an alternative simpler way and came across Tenkara. On the Tenkara USA site it's defined as:

"...The simple Japanese method of fly-fishing where only a rod, line and fly are used.
Eleven to fourteen-foot long rods telescope down to a mere 20 inches. The ultra-portable gear and minimalist nature of the sport make it ideal for going farther as you explore your favorite stream. Whether it is fly-fishing while backpacking, or fishing for fishing sake, Tenkara shows us that simplicity can be liberating."



I've watched some video and done some reading. I'm wondering if any other "fisherpersons" on here have any experience with this method?


I'd appreciate any advice or comments on this method.


Hud
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:45 AM   #2
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Very similar to method I've used for crappie and bluegills, in brush congested hot spots.

I just use a conventional fly rod, a short length of mono tied to the top guide, sans tippet. The bait is then lowered into the limbs of the brush, where a conventional cast would result in a snag. When a fish is hooked, you just raise the rod straight up. There are conventional rods made for this type of fishing, too, and all are reminiscent of the days of a line tied off on a long stick or limb.

It's a great way to reduce loss of terminal tackle, and yes, the easy access does allow more meat for the table. However, for me . . . and perhaps it's only me . . . the thrill of the fight, even that of a smaller species of fish . . . is greatly diminished. It;s more hook and yank. And, hook a decent bass on that rig, and try and hog it out!

But, I have not used the Tenkara system, nor am I discounting it. It does, however, seem very similar to the way many of us have fished in the past.

I, too, routinely fish with fly rods. Mainly trout, but bass and panfish, also. Yes, it's easy to become 'disenchanted', especially if you compare yourself to a purist, and all the gear they've accumulated. But a ten foot rod in the conditions you note is of course ungainly. Get a rod in a 6' to 7' length, and 4-6 wt class, and have some fun! Forget all the paraphernalia you 'could buy'. Besides your rod/reel setup, a half dozen tippets and a few flies, and you're in business.

It sounds like a 'too long' rod is spoiling your experience. Keep it simple, and wishing you a million good times on the water!
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:47 AM   #3
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I never heard of it before. I personally do not like the idea of a telescoping rod. I have a 7 wt. travel rod. It breaks down into 4 sections and is very flexible and fun to use.
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badlands View Post
Very similar to method I've used for crappie and bluegills, in brush congested hot spots.

It sounds like a 'too long' rod is spoiling your experience. Keep it simple, and wishing you a million good times on the water!
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:54 AM   #5
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X3

When crappie fishing, I have learned a 12ft is all I can handle...10 is better.

I love to fish, but It seems I never have the time. We bought a trailer mostly so we would have/make time. We have had it 3 months now...only been once. We have scheduled a trip at thanksgiving... We ARE going.
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:30 PM   #6
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A ten foot rod for those little streams is a bit of overkill. An eight foot trout action rod is more then enough. They use nine foot rods for saltwater flyfishing. My Orvis fly rod is more then 40 years old and it looks new. Everything you need can be carried in your fishing vest. Flyfishing is not for everyone. When I tell people that I bend down the barb on fly hooks so that I don't hurt the trout before I release them back into the stream they look at me like I was crazy. Good Luck and have fun.
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Old 11-11-2013, 10:39 PM   #7
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Wow, that is too rich for my cheap wallet!

I do a lot of trout fishing during the season but I use really cheap equipment and ultra light setups. I used to use 7-9 foot rods but lately my longest rod for trout is a six footer. I do have a fly fishing rod, but there are just too many people around where we fish. Someday I hope to use it more as it is fun.
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Old 11-12-2013, 08:44 AM   #8
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I've read stories and heard tales of old-timers in the mountains who tied their own crude flies, picked up some line and cut their "rod" from a thicket close to the stream. With patience and skill they caught fish to eat. I guess that's where I'm going with this. I don't need to catch fish to eat but I enjoy the challenge. From time to time I do enjoy a couple of pan fried fresh trout. Most of all I just enjoy being outside on the creek...I'll keep plugging along with this newest distraction until something else shiny comes along and catches me eye...
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Old 11-13-2013, 11:17 AM   #9
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When I first got into fly fishing, a friend of mine who ran the fly shop where we camp said, "you don't need all this expensive stuff". He sold me a fly rod, reel, line, tapered leader and tippit for less than $100. I've replaced the leader several times but still using the same rig.

When I fish, I always catch and release. I carry my rod and reel and I carry a small plastic container of flies in my pocket. That's it.

Oh and my best investment, waders. I'm way too old to wade the cold mountain streams without them.
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