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Why we exist

It is possible to make many things in life complex. We can choose to carry multiple fly patterns with us. We can carry multiple line weights. We can carry accessories along. When we don’t know any better,  it may seem like the burden of carrying additional things in our fishing packs (in addition to the burden of then having to think about those additional things) will add value to our fishing and make it easier.
Often it does not. We exist to tell people that fly-fishing is much simpler than it seems. We exist because we believe that with more people taking up fly-fishing the more closely they will connect with their environment and help take care of it. We exist because we want to share the fun of tenkara.
The tenkara story tells us we can leave many things behind.  And, after we know that we can leave stuff behind, what we then do is simply a matter of choice.

Quick facts

- Website launch date: April 12, 2009
- Based in Boulder, Colorado (started in San Francisco, moved to Boulder in 2012)
- Fully independent US-based company; not affiliated or part of any other tenkara companies.
- Founder: Daniel W. Galhardo
- About Daniel: born in 1983 in Brazil (American citizen since 2011). Daniel moved to the US in high school, stayed here for college, then trout and eventually for his wife. Daniel used worked in international banking prior to founding Tenkara USA.

Click for Recent Coverage

Coming soon: tenkara – the book

After 7 years of introducing tenkara to the world, Tenkara USA founder Daniel Galhardo is finally ready to publish his book on tenkara. Take a look at our Kickstarter campaign and secure your copy or take advantage of the opportunity to spend time in Japan with Daniel!

Please consider funding this project

Our Story

Tenkara USA is the first company to introduce tenkara outside of Japan. Founded in 2009 by Daniel W. Galhardo, Tenkara USA is a fully independent company, based in Boulder, Colorado.

Daniel Galhardo Tenkara founderIn 2007, Daniel discovered tenkara while researching the history and culture of fishing in Japan. In 2008, he visited Japan for his first time with his wife and saw tenkara in person. He returned to the US with a tenkara rod in his bag and started enjoying tenkara on backpacking trips. The method was simple and effective; yet, there was no information in English on tenkara. Daniel decided he wanted to share tenkara with people, it would make it easy for people to take-up fly-fishing and experienced anglers like himself were sure to enjoy its minimalist nature. He realized that to share tenkara he could have written many articles and books about it, but if people didn’t get a chance to experience tenkara for themselves it would not spread. Thus, Daniel set out to create a business designing tenkara rods, tenkara lines and tenkara flies and putting them in the hands of people.

In March of 2009, after several months of hard work creating the business and a month before Tenkara USA officially “opened doors”, Daniel left his nascent career in international banking to dedicate himself full-time to creating Tenkara USA. There were many challenges ahead with introducing a type of fishing that doesn’t target the largest fish around and went against the grain of the established industry.

Tenkara has been called a fad, and was initially dismissed by the industry. But, it’s probably not an exaggeration to say that tenkara has since created a small revolution in the fly-fishing industry. 5 years on, tenkara has proven it is here to stay.

Photos and Logos

Visit the Google Drive links below to download our best photographs and logos. High-resolution images should be available. If you have seen other images that you are interested in but are not available on the link, please let us know. We have a large portfolio of photographs to share.

You may use the images available here in your media publication (blogs & magazines). Please attribute  photos to “Tenkara USA”. (*Images may not be used without permission by other businesses in the fishing and sport industries. )

We’d appreciate it if you could let us know what image you are using, in what publication and date of release. Please email us at

Tenkara in the Media

Here's some recent coverage of tenkara in the media.

  • Peak Gear Award – Sato Kit Peak Gear Award Tenkara

    Peak Gear Award – Sato Kit

    From Elevation Outdoors: Why It Won: Tenkara makes fly fishing a new experience for anyone who tries it. The cast is simple to learn (and some longtime fly anglers on...

  • America’s Most Trout Friendly Companies image2

    America’s Most Trout Friendly Companies

    Tenkara USA was named one of America’s Most Trout Friendly Companies by Trout Unlimited. Our strong commitment to contributing to environmental organizations that...

  • Baltimore Sun BaltimoreSun Tenkara

    Baltimore Sun

    Read story here “Forget about ‘Western’ fly-fishing rods. The new rage around the area is tenkara fishing.” “The most significant advantage...

  • Men’s Journal Tenkara in Men's Journal

    Men’s Journal

    “While tenkara is great for fly-fishing beginners, it can be a revelation for the enthusiast and an opportunity to get away from the overpacking...

  • Kudo Award – Fly Rod and Reel... Kudo Award by Fly Rod and Reel

    Kudo Award – Fly Rod and Reel...

    The Tenkara USA Rhodo, an adjustable tenkara rod we released earlier this year, just received the “Kudo Award” from renowned author and tenkara angler Dave Hughes...

  • Denver Post, June 8th 2014 Tenkara clinic in Colorado

    Denver Post, June 8th 2014

    Tenkara “fad” hitting its stride in Colorado’s high-country streams, writes Scott Willoughby on his second piece for the Denver Post...

  • Dave Hughes “Trout from Small Streams” (Book) Dave Hughes Tenkara in Trout from Small Streams

    Dave Hughes “Trout from Small Streams” (Book)

    Dave Hughes’ Trout from Small Streams has been a popular book since 2003. In its second edition, release in 2014, Dave updates the book with a 21-page chapter...

  • Ask About Fly Ask about fly fishing tenkara

    Ask About Fly

    On June 4th Daniel participated the internet radio show Roger Maves and I talked about “Tenkara’s Evolution”. We started...

  • Blue Ridge Outdoors: Tenkanyoneering rappeling and tenkara fishing

    Blue Ridge Outdoors: Tenkanyoneering

    A fantastic piece by Graham Averill on a tenkara plus canyoneering trip out in North Carolina. “And thanks to the streamlined gear and telescoping rods, tenkara...

  • Boulder Weekly Daniel Galhardo shows a trout to tenkara girls in Boulder

    Boulder Weekly

    Boulder Weekly, our home newspaper, covered tenkara on May 1st, 2014 as tenkara takes Boulder by a storm. The Tenkara Girls group is also featured in a photograph...

  • Men’s Health: Tenkara, Manliest Hobbies on Earth tenkara-manliest-hobby

    Men’s Health: Tenkara, Manliest Hobbies on Earth

    Too good not to share. Tenkara was named one of the “10 Manliest Hobbies on Earth” by Men’s Health magazine! Sure, considering how many women are taking up...

  • High Country News / Adventure Journal Tenkara on High Country News

    High Country News / Adventure Journal

    Daniel Galhardo and Tenkara USA covered in a story by Tienlon Ho on High Country News and Adventure Journal. “The basic tenkara cast looks a lot like a Western...

  • John Gierach, All Fishermen are Liars Gierach-tenkara-fishermen-liars

    John Gierach, All Fishermen are Liars

    Does John Gierach tenkara? Yes! He does. At least some of the time. In his latest book, All Fishermen are Liars, Gierach recounts the story of Daniel coming to visit and...

  • Denver Post Tenkara on Denver Post

    Denver Post

    Scott Willoughby writes about tenkara and Tenkara USA for the Denver Post. “There is a school of thought that believes it is human nature to make things more...

  • Trout – a Trout Unlimited Magazine Trout magazine by Trout Unlimited

    Trout – a Trout Unlimited Magazine

    Morgan Lyle wrote a nice piece, probably one of the most thorough pieces we have read, for Trout magazine, the magazine published by Trout Unlimited...