Nissin Tenkara Line Spool
Oct07

Nissin Tenkara Line Spool

Tenkara line spools seem simple enough.  After all, they’re basically just spools.  And this might lead on to believe that they’re all pretty much the same.  But I’ve found that some actually better than others.  I’ve mostly been using spools from Tenkara USA and Leica and have been very happy with them but when I saw these Nissin line spools on eBay, the gear junkie in me just had to try them to see if they...

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Fuji Tenkara Rod Cap
Aug21

Fuji Tenkara Rod Cap

While fishing with some of the Japanese anglers the day before the summit, I found myself admiring a strange looking contraption at the end of Masami Tanaka’s tenkara rod. It was a clear plastic sleeve with a black strap around it. Much different than the wooden rod plug most of us in the West are familiar with (and sometimes curse for its unrivaled ability to go AWOL). I made a quick inquiry about it and went back to getting...

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Handmade Bamboo Tenkara Line Spool
Aug05

Handmade Bamboo Tenkara Line Spool

I’ve written before about some unique line tenkara holders such as the bamboo line holder I got on eBay and the wooden line spool Dr. Ishigaki donated for an auction at the Tenkara Summit and the moose antler line spool made by Chris Kulhow.  At the summit, I was able to add to my collection thanks to a gift from Masami Tanaka, one of the Japanese tenkara anglers who attended the event.  Tanaka-san makes his own line spools from...

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Sneak Preview: TraiLite Designs Stream Pack
May21

Sneak Preview: TraiLite Designs Stream Pack

  I just got word that the newly redesigned Stream Pack from TrailLite Designs will be available next week on the Tenkara Bum website.  If the name TrailLite Designs sounds familiar, it’s probably because you know them as the creator of the Ebira Rod Quiver–an ingenious tenkara accessory which happens to have been named by yours truly. The new design replaces the previous “sleeve” rod holders with cords...

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Tenkara USA Ayu Review
May09

Tenkara USA Ayu Review

  I’m not sure how it happened but somehow over the last two years I’ve been fishing the Tenkara USA Ayu, I haven’t done a review.  Maybe it’s because I’ve always considered it such an staple tenkara rod  that it was easy to overlook.  Sometimes, the most obvious things are the easiest to miss.  But, a review is long overdue.  And the timing is perfect since I recently got the latest version of the...

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Daiwa Soyokaze Review
May01

Daiwa Soyokaze Review

  While the Daiwa Soyokaze isn’t technically a true “tenkara” rod, any tenkara angler would immediately recognize a lot of familiar features. Telescopic blank? Check. Lilian cord? Check. No reel seat? Check. In fact, it’s hard to cast the Soyokaze and not consider it anything other than a “minature” tenkara rod. The Soyokaze line of rods is intended for a niche sport called micro fishing in...

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Bass Pro Shops White River Gear Bag Review

  I finally decided to replace my 15-year-old Orvis gear bag with something a little more modern and technical.  At my local Bass Pro Shops, I found the White River gear bag–a feature packed bag that is perfect for tenkara as well as other types of fly fishing.  After comparing it to several other bags, this was the best gear bag for the money and so far, it has exceeded my expectations. PLEASE READ:  Before you say a gear...

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More Tenkara Gear for Me (and You)
Apr20

More Tenkara Gear for Me (and You)

  Today, I got some good tenkara gear in the mail.  But this time, I’m not hoarding it all for myself–it’s for you too!  The first was a box of tenkara rods and lines generously donated by Tenkara USA for our tenkara rod loaner program.  I’ll be adding these to the demo page this weekend.  I’m excited to tell you that in addition to getting a couple more of one of the most popular rods (the Iwana),...

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Raji Leica Tenkara Line Spools
Apr16

Raji Leica Tenkara Line Spools

  Not too long ago, I posted about some Oni tenkara line spools I got from Japan.  I like them a lot but I also like line spools that have a metal bar inserted in the center for storing the fly.  On eBay, I recently found a spool that has the best of both worlds–a spool identical to the Oni spools but with the metal bar.       It might not seem like a big deal but I like being able to hook my fly on the metal bar...

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Tenkara Release Box
Apr08

Tenkara Release Box

  Today I got a chance to try out the release box that Karel from Tenkara on the Fly made for me.  I really like it because it gives me plenty of time to take pictures of fish without having to worry about suffocating them or slipping out of my hands.  Plus, I can pour them right from my net into the box, and then pour the box into the water to release them touch free.  Here are a few pics…     I added some...

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Tenkara USA Yamame Follow Up Review
Mar24

Tenkara USA Yamame Follow Up Review

  A while back, I wrote an initial review of the Tenkara USA Yamame.  But until now, I hadn’t actually had a chance to fish it.  Now that I’ve had it on the water, I wanted to report back as promised.  To read my more detailed  review of the Yamame’s features and design, read my initial review here.  This report is strictly about how the rod fishes. I fished the Yamame on the S. Platte river about 10 miles...

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The “Perfect” Tenkara Rod
Mar08

The “Perfect” Tenkara Rod

Sitting on the bank during one of those all-too-familiar fishless days on the South Platte, I started thinking about rod design.  With my current favorite in my hand (the Tenkara USA Ito), I began to think about what makes a rod “good”.  I’ve done a fair number of tenkara rod reviews and if you’ve followed this blog for any significant length of time, you know I have a passion for good design.  It struck me...

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Feeding the Tenkara Gear Addiction
Mar02

Feeding the Tenkara Gear Addiction

Today, I came home to a small stack of packages on my doorstep.  If you’re an unapologetic tenkara gear junkie like me, you know what such a site causes:  an adrenaline fueled, single-minded mission to find the closest box cutter.     Oni Tenkara Line Spools   The first package came from a friend in Japan who got me some Oni line spools.  These are common in Japan but nearly impossible to find in the U.S. right now....

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Fountainhead Stone Fly Tenkara Rods
Feb24

Fountainhead Stone Fly Tenkara Rods

I was recently able to test out the Stone Fly series of rods from Fountainhead and was actually surprised by the quality.  By the price, you’d think that they are low end rods–and they are.  But in this case, “low end” doesn’t  mean “poor quality”.  Here are some of my basic observations about this line of rods… First, let’s get some specs out of the way.  I tested all three models...

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Moose Antler Tenkara Line Spool
Feb23

Moose Antler Tenkara Line Spool

  Today, I got my moose antler tenkara line spool hand carved by Chris from The North River Blog.  This spool is a work of art reminiscent of Dr. Ishigaki’s wooden line spool and I just wanted to share a few photos…If you follow my blog, you know that I have a deep appreciation for design and for unique tenkara gear.  When I first saw Chris’s idea to make a line spool out of antler, I just knew I had to have...

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Tenkara USA 3rd Generation Traditional Line
Jan01

Tenkara USA 3rd Generation Traditional Line

  Tenkara USA has just updated their traditional furled tenkara lines and I recently got mine and had a chance to do some test casting with my 13 footer.  Here are my thoughts comparing it to the 1st generation monofilament lines and 2nd generation spectra lines. The 2nd generation Kevlar lines were an improvement over the old mono lines in that they didn’t tangle if you had to pull out a snag; however they were heavy.  In...

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Tenkara USA Yamame – Initial Review
Dec18

Tenkara USA Yamame – Initial Review

I just got my Tenkara USA Yamame and wanted to share my initial impressions.  Keep in mind, I haven’t fished with this rod yet but I’ve cast it and gone over every detail of its workmanship.  I will have more info. after I’ve had it on the water but from what I can tell so far, the Yamame is a winner. I knew that the Yamame was billed as a “big fish” rod before I got it, but I wasn’t prepared for...

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Fishpond San Juan Chest Pack Review

I have been using the Fishpond San Juan chest pack for a while now on a variety of streams and really like it for tenkara fishing.  I couldn’t find one locally, but luckily, Colorado Skies Outfitters (my local fly shop here in Parker) was cool enough to pick one up from their distributor and got me one within 24 hours.  That was great customer service!  Here’s a video of what I like and don’t like about the pack....

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Tenkara USA Ito Review
Oct25

Tenkara USA Ito Review

  I recently broke down and bought a Tenkara USA Ito after hearing a lot of buzz and positive reviews on it.  To be honest, my first experience with the Ito didn’t make a great impression on me.  I had cast one a few times and thought it was too slow and longer than I really needed.  But what I didn’t realize was that the Ito grows on you and once you fish it a few times and drop some preconceived notions, you finally...

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Daiwa Tenkara Line
Aug20

Daiwa Tenkara Line

I got my Daiwa fluorocarbon Plasma Line from Japan today. While I’m completely happy with my Tenkara Bum and Tenkara USA level lines, I Just wanted to try something a little different.     The diameter is 0.310 mm (0.012″) and is marked as a #3.5 line.  This is a just little thinner than the Tenkara USA #3.5 level line, yet right in between the #3 and #4 Tenkara Bum lines.  It might prove to be an interesting...

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