Friday, June 15, 2012

What is a Tenkara Rod

Until a few years ago when a client unveiled a rod he had recently received from a friend, with no reel seat on it, I had not heard of a Tenkara Rod. This week while sitting in the dentist chair the hygienist asked, "do you fly fish, I just noticed you had a Simm's jacket on?" I answer, "yes." He goes on to tell me he just purchased a Tenkara Rod and he has never fished before and was wondering if I knew anything about the rod. I reply, " I know you fish it without a reel and that's about it."  
This got my curiosity going. What is a Tenkara Rod? It is the traditional Japanese method of fly-fishing where only a rod, line and fly are used.
Tenkara is about fly-fishing simplicity. The rods are about eleven to fourteen feet long rods Tenkara rods are ideal for small streams. They are very lightweight,  portable, telescoping into a mere 20 inches, and thus excellent for backpacking. 
So how do the rods fish? I haven't fished a Tenkara but here is an article in Field and Stream explaining a bit on what they are like to fish.  "A juvenile tarpon might be the ideal Tenkara fish. A five-pound bonefish is going to make a straight run and blow the rod apart. A five-pound trout in heavy current is likely going to snap you off." Deeter 


Does anyone have a Tenkara story?