Beginners guide to Tenkara Part One: The Gear to Getchya Going.
When getting into Tenkara there are a number of sources to help you figure out exactly what will work for your given situation. I intend to give you one more source with GetLostHiking.
The first thing you may want to do is set your price limit. For me I wanted to stay under $100 incase I didn’t like it. I bought the Daiwa Soyokaze 27SR for a couple reasons. The biggest reason was that it’s only about $75. But another reason was that it’s intended to be a Tanago rod (basically micro fishing rod) and therefore has a very sensitive tip section. This is great for detecting strikes and you can also really feel the strength of the fish. One thing about Tenkara anglers is most of them consider a Tenkara rod to only be a true Tenkara rod if equipped with a cork grip. If you follow Chris Stewarts TenkaraBum.com blog, you’ll see not everyone agrees. But anyway for the gear I had Fortunately been fly fishing for awhile before Tenkara so I had some already. But what I got was the rod for $75, a line spool to hold the line you use to fish with for $5, a 12 foot line to go on that line spool for $15, and a spool of 5X tippet for $5.
This picture shows a different line spool than the TenkaraBum.com spools
If you include the shipping I was right around my $100 mark. And I did get all of this from TenkaraBum.com. Now other things I consider essentials, either nippers and hemostats or hemostat scissors $10-15, a fly box $3-50 depending on what kind you want, and a net $15-LOTS. Now you can probably go without a net but they sure do come in handy! Fly boxes come in all shapes, sizes, and weights. I have a Flambuea water proof fly box half foam and half compartment (among a few other boxes). This box is a little bulky and a bit heavier than some others but I wanted one since I started fly fishing and finally broke down and spent the $20 one costs. Before that I had a cheap $3 box that worked just fine. As far as nippers I like the Fishpond Aussie nippers because of their comfortable shape and extreme light weight. I have a pair of Berkley hemostats I got on sale at Walmart. They are awesome, very thin for getting the tiny size 30 flies and have a nice grip for the finger holes. Additional things that are nice to have? I like my waders because trout streams are very cold and where I fish you need to be in the water. Although I just got a wonderful Simms vest for Christmas that I’ve been using, I like is a chest pack, after reading about how well it works for Jason Klass of TenkaraTalk.com I had to have one. However I cheaped out on mine, DO NOT CHEAP OUT! Mine is very heavy and hurts my neck after just an hour or two. I should’ve spent the extra money to get a lighter one. And that’s all I use for Tenkara fishing. Thanks for reading and please let me know if I missed anything!