By now, most fly fishers have at least heard about Tenkara–a Japanese method of fly fishing developed about 200 years ago–and you’ve probably seen both pro-Tenkara websites and videos that make fun of the tackle and techniques.
But how much do you really know about Tenkara rods, flies, and set up? To bridge the information gap and to inform more fly anglers, Daniel Galhardo of Tenkara USA has launched a video series called “2-minute Guides to Tenkara.” In the first five episodes, he walks you through how Tenkara rods work, how to choose the right rod, how to set that rod up, and how to select the right flies. It’s entertaining and illuminating stuff.
Even if you don’t think you’ll get yourself a Tenkara rod, such as the adjustable length Sato model, at least you’ll know what everyone is talking about when the subject comes up. Keep an eye out for more videos in the series on the Tenkara USA YouTube channel.
6 thoughts on “Videos: Understanding Tenkara Rods, Set Up and Flies”
I bough a Tenkara rod and tried it, don’t like it at all. Very limiting, on a stream with overhanging vegetation and no back cast room it was worthless. Pool was deep, can’t roll cast these lines and so I put it away and will probably stay there forever. Like my 10′ ECN rod where I can adjust the line length and have a reel so I don’t have to worry about chasing a fish
Please send your unused tenkara rod to me
I bought a Tenkara rod three years ago and find it as an effective tool for fly fishing for trout. The drag free drifts one can get by keeping the line off the water is amazing!. I still enjoy fishing with Western fly rods, but find myself using my Tenkara rod more often than not.
Thanks for sharing Phil!
I bought a tenkara rod from Daniel a couple of years ago now and I love it. I fish small streams in CO almost exclusively and found casting a bit tricky at first but well worth the effort of developing my own technique. I fish dries and nymph rigs using roll casts and even backhanded casts. You have to adapt your casting motion to more of a sidearm one with overhanging branches and what-not but you can do it. I use a furled leader from Cutthroat Leaders rather than a level line and it works great for me. Fighting fish is a kick since even an 8-inch brown feels like a horse with a tenkara rod! The best thing about tenkara that I don’t think Daniel mentioned is that if you’re fishing a creek or stream with lots of cover you never have to worry about getting your rod caught in bushes or branches as you move around (I know you’ve done it since we all have) since it’s so easy to collapse.
I’m a big fan of Tenkara. I don’t use the traditional knots and flies rather I use a western Nymphing set up and the Tenkara rod. Works great on small streams or if I’m wading. Caught everything from a tiny Brook trout to big browns. Still use my traditional western fly rod and reel the most as I fish lakes and large rivers but for everything else I use Tenkara. You should try it it’s different, not better or worse just another great tool to expand your efforts on the water.