A couple of months ago a friend turned me on to the app Storehouse. I immediately started playing with it as a story-telling medium and loved the format. The first story I created with images and videos I have captured was “Tenkara with Yuzo Sebata“. I intend to create a series of stories of fishing and learning from different tenkara teachers. Here’s my story of “Tenkara with Hisao Ishigaki”. Hope you enjoy it.
My teacher Dr. Hisao Ishigaki, whom most of you have read about by now, has just arrived in Boulder. While he couldn’t make it to this year’s Tenkara Summit, he put aside a week to come visit us again and share more of his passion for tenkara internationally.
Dr. Ishigaki arrived today at around 1pm. I drove him to my home, which is an hour away from the airport. We had some lunch. Then I expected Dr. Ishigaki, who is 67 years old, to want to take it very easy today. But, he is a devout fisherman and as I should have known, couldn’t wait to get on the water. At 3:30pm Dr. Ishigaki said he wanted to go fishing later; he needed an hour to take a short nap and then would be ready to go at 4:30pm. That’s the kind of energy I really want to have!
At 4:30pm we readied ourselves and drove to Eldorado Canyon State Park. Though it was not a fish-in-every-pool kinda day, the fishing was still terrific. He was mesmerized by the high cliffs that surrounded us. And, we lost ourselves in time in that canyon. We did what I consider to be my long run when I visit “Eldo” and covered some good ground. We left as it started getting dark and we felt we had reached what seemed to be a logical place to conclude our evening of fishing.
I captured some beautiful images today, and am excited to share them all at some point. But, I think what I want to do for now is share one fun image of Dr. Ishigaki per day this week. Here he is with one of the fish that didn’t want to pose for a picture.
Do you have any questions you’d like to ask Dr. Ishigaki? I’ll be compiling questions submitted here, on our Facebook page, and via Instagram (#tenkara #questiontime or #ishigakiweek) and will go over them with him. We’ll post those either in writing, as a video or in our new podcast.
Hans Florine is best known for his rock climbing career, which includes setting the record for the fastest ascent of El Capitan (climbing 3,000ft of vertical rock in 2 hours and 23 minutes…in a place most people take 3 days to climb).
Last year I got to meet Hans, someone who’s greatly inspired my own interest in rock climbing. He was interested in teaching his young son how to fly-fish and realized tenkara would be a great tool for that. A couple of weeks ago he came to Boulder and we connected for a morning of fishing followed by an afternoon of rock climbing. Here’s a short video I made of him talking about where tenkara fits in with his climbing lifestyle.
It’s been overdue for sometime, we know. But, I’m happy to announce we finally built up the functionality on our website for you to download the digital version of the Tenkara Magazine.
You can order the 2014 and the 2015 versions online. The 2015 is available in two electronic formats, one is the original layout of the magazine, the other is a narrow layout optimized for reading on a phone or tablet. Either costs $4.00 (print version is $9.00). The 2014 magazine is only available in one electronic format, the original layout, and costs $2.50.
Sorry I have been very absent from posting recently. Right now I’m in the middle of a very large writing project that is consuming a lot of my time and just about all of my brain power. The business is keeping me very busy when not writing. And, when I can, I have been fishing to support the large writing project and future blog posts. But, those are just excuses! I thought you’d enjoy a few images we captured recently. Some tenkara inspiration in case you can’t go fishing right now. I have been active on our Instagram page, so please follow that if you don’t yet. More blog posts to come in the future, I promise.
A large brown trout is released in healthy condition. Image by Doug Heggart.
A double tenkara hookup in Wyoming.
A rainbow kisses the water
“Elegance is achieved when, having discarded all superfluous things, we discover simplicity and concentration. The simpler the pose, the better; the more sober, the more beautiful.” Paulo Coelho.
Long exposure to fishing is good for the soul
a rainbow tail
fishing among araucaria trees in Argentina
a great fighter caught on the North Platte in Wyoming
Three years ago, on January 22nd, 2012, I rode an elevator with the legendary fly angler Mr. Lefty Kreh. In the 30-second elevator ride I was able to ask Mr. Kreh what he thought of tenkara, and his response was, in short, “I think tenkara is a fad and it won’t last long.“. I wrote about this experience. Within hours the post went viral, with nearly every fly-fishing blog reposting it in the following days and, by my estimates, well over 700 comments being written in response.
Fast-forward to January 24th, 2015 and we officially have a change in the status of tenkara in the fly-fishing world. On that Saturday morning we were getting ready for the Fly Fishing Show in Somerset, when Mr. Lefty Kreh appeared in our booth looking for me. Oh, oh…was I about to get an earful for publicly writing about our conversation? Not at all. Mr. Kreh said he wanted to talk to me about our conversation three years earlier, to “clear the waters” as he put it, about his comment on tenkara being a fad.
I confess, I had wanted to talk to him in the years since but never felt very comfortable approaching him. I never felt there was any animosity between us, but he is Lefty Kreh, a celebrity usually surrounded by many people. I was delighted to see him coming over. He sat down and we chatted for a good 20 minutes. Those around me will tell you I had a smile from ear to ear, Lefty, after all, is an angler I have looked up to since I started my career in fly-fishing, and I rejoiced at the chance of chatting with him for longer than 30 seconds. Two of my favorite things about having created a business in the fly-fishing industry are that I can talk to like-minded people all the time, and that it has put me in touch with those I had looked up to since I first learned I could imitate bugs with hooks and feathers.
Lefty told me that in the several decades he’s been fly-fishing he’s seen many things coming and going, so tenkara could have been one of those. But, he has had a change of heart and has been looking into tenkara a lot and “no longer think[s] tenkara is a fad”. In fact, he said, tenkara has “many great applications, particularly for the trout angler and for teaching people how to fly-fish.”
I was particularly delighted when he told me we have a great website and that he’s been spending a lot of time looking into tenkara right here. He knew a lot about tenkara, and could tell me about the knots and the flies, and more. And, yes, Lefty has fished with tenkara and has been experimenting with it too.
By far my favorite part was when he told me:
“make sure to keep it [tenkara] simple; you are doing a great job, just continue to keep it simple.”
Here’s the opportunity for the trip of a lifetime. Join me for a week of tenkara in Patagonia, Argentina in March.
Tenkara USA founder, Daniel Galhardo, will be hosting a week-long Tenkara Week, in Argentina Patagonia. The Patagonia Tenkara trip will take place March 5-12, 2015.
Below is an essay by Brian Lindsay and his fishing journey, which eventually led him to tenkara. Hope you enjoy the reading.
My father never said much. He was a quiet man. He lived a full life in secrecy. It was the nature of his work, and his life, until he passed away quietly. He left me with many mysteries to discover for myself, including his love for fishing.
This first thing I remember in my life was the smell of bacon frying at a campsite. I started my first year of life on a fishing trip through northern Canada. We camped and fished a lot when I was young. I was aware of it all. My mother tells me now, that my father, an “avid outdoorsman,” was fishing one day while being irritated by my noisemaking habits. I was running my toy cars back and forth on the bottom of his aluminum boat. He recalled later, and throughout his life, that he had never caught more fish than on that day.
My 1st Kotsuzake….. been waiting 4.5 years for this. It ended up being a solo adventure and that was probably how it was meant to be.
In almost 5 years since becoming a tenkara fisherman, I had never taken the life of a trout for edible enjoyment. I happily released each trout go to be caught another day. But… my tick-tock clock been ticking for a while now and I knew soon, even after all these years, I would do the deed.
This morning I decided to explore new places to fish along with hopes of finding a nice mountain lake where I could take my wife for some Fall kayaking fun. I was a bit all over the place, driving around a lot, but with little fishing…. but I still did fish and caught a nice Brownie right off highway 49 in Northern California. I did eventually find a cool mountain lake to take my wife to this coming weekend. So my efforts were being rewarded…but I still needed to get some serious fishing in as most the day I had been putzing around in the FJ Cruiser.
Around 1:30PM I decided it was time to head to my secret Mountain Meadow, which I have written about before, in hopes to catch a few brookies. So off I went figuring I would be fishing again around 2:30PM and could get in at least 2+ hours of solid fishing. I went prepared with the normal goods…. Sato, Rhodo, 3.5 Orange Level Line, Salt & Pepper Sakasa Kebari, some snacks and drinks. When I arrived out came the Rhodo and I went to work. Continue reading
My neighbor and tenkara guide Allen Seagraves just came over to show me a fish he had just caught out of Boulder Creek. I figure this should definitely get you pumped for the Tenkara Summit happening this weekend. Allen is one of the tenkara guides in the Tenkara Guide Network, and if you’re wondering, he’s still available on Friday. He was using the Sato, which has been sold out for over a month but is coming back into our stock this week, as well as a tenkara fly.
While on Saturday the event mostly consists of presentations and demos, Sunday is a free and not organized fishing day. We will be encouraging everyone present to fish up and down Boulder Canyon, and throughout the day a group of experienced tenkara anglers will join you in different parts of the creek to help with any questions you may have. This will be a great weekend.
Hard to believe, but the Tenkara Summit is just one week away! We are expecting over 160 people to attend. If you haven’t registered yet, please do so here. We will also take on walk-ins but would appreciate pre-registration to ensure we have enough food for everyone. This year we are bringing Dr. Hisao Ishigaki as the keynote speaker and to provide casting and fly-tying clinics along with a range of tenkara enthusiasts who will be available to teach anyone the art of tenkara.
While this is not a commercial event, we are bringing a few vendors with products that the tenkara community will appreciate having access too. In addition to a full booth hosted by Tenkara USA with Tenkara Summit shirts, some very cool beer pints and a few other goodies, here’s a list of the vendors you can expect to see at the Tenkara Summit this year.
TENKARA SUMMIT VENDORS: Continue reading
I have never considered fishing to be a sport, at least not the way the word is used by most people. Perhaps the best way to put it, in my opinion, is how I once heard a comedian say it, “fishing is the only sport where the opponent doesn’t know he’s playing” (I believe this was said by Brian Regan, but can’t find the joke right now). But, at the same time I’m not sure there is another word that really encompasses what fishing is. It’s a leisure activity, it’s a hobby, it’s a way to experience and commune with nature, and yes, it can certainly feel like an outright sport sometimes. Even if the way I fish often involves climbing gnarly boulders or hiking for hours, I continue to hesitate on using the word “sport” to describe fishing. However, today I realized that an angler and an athlete have a lot more in common than I had thought. More specifically, I realized how the three pillars of an athlete’s life: sleep, diet and training, also affect an angler’s performance. Continue reading
I love how the Japanese have terms like “shower climbing” and “forest bathing”. The second, forest bathing, or shinrin yoku, is a new one to me, but it has been one of my favorite activities for as long as I remember. As Doug Schnitzpahn of Elevation Outdoors describes it, “In Japan the term shinrin-yoku refers to the act of getting out and simply walking in the woods and breathing in—both metaphorically and actually—the healing aromas of the trees. The term roughly translates as “forest bathing,” or, more romantically, as taking in the essence of the forest, walking quietly, aware.”
Yesterday, late in the afternoon, I went forest bathing. Continue reading