Monday, March 19, 2012

A Few Firsts

Having another day off, I headed today back to Bear Creek, although today it felt like Winter was back again. Gone are the days of low 70ies, today it was more like high 30ies and low 40ies.

Today, I wanted to use two new pieces of equipment: a release box and a new rod.

The release box is something I have been thinking about ever since I saw this post over at Tenkara Fisher. Finally feeling inspired enough I went to the hardware store and bought the supplies, including the wrong glue. It was a fairly easy project - were it not for the glue. I didn't pay too much attention and just got some superglue which is not quite the best for this project. It works, but, well, let's just say it's not easy to work with. Anyway, I finally have a release box and I have plans for a few more already for some of my friends. And I ordered the right cement, too.

The new rod is a Daiwa Soyokaze 27SR, a tanago rod offered by my friend Chris Stewart (aka Tenkarabum) who sent me this rod as a replacement for a rod that whose tip broke last year in  RMNP. A tanago rod is not quite a tenkara rod, although it is a telescopic rod. It is made for smaller quarry, such as minnows. Yes, I said it. Minnows. Small fish. Actually, very small fish. Read more about it here and here.  BUT, the rod, at 9ft, can be used as a tenkara rod and you can successfully fight and land fish that are bigger than 2". Today, I landed a few around 10" and a bigger one, probably 12", that I had at my feet but lost it since I forgot my tamo and tried to land it with the release box. The release box I built is 11.5" long and 2.5" wide, so not really the right tool to land fish. Anyway, the point I was trying to make is that this little rod is has more to it than what meets the eye, it is a nice and handy tool for very small creeks. It has plenty of backbone for trout of 12", probably even bigger fish. The length of the rod will require you to fish in stealth mode since you are loosing about 4-6 ft of reach compared to when using an 11ft or 12 ft rod. I spent a lot of time on my knees today... but with good results! This, or the next size up at 10.2ft. would be a rod perfect for someone who needs a light rod for some backpacking - it weights only 1.69oz (the 9ft does)! A more comprehensive review of the rod will follow after I have fished it some more. I am thinking RMNP...

Back to the fishing today - cold, sun, clouds, overcast, windy mixed in with some fine trout. Of 17 trout hooked, I landed 9 even without my tamo (...). Two came up on top and took my CDC & Elk, all others fell for the RS2. These are my two confidence flies and fishing them together as a dry & dropper just seems to work - all the time.

Tight Lines, -K

River Statistics:
Weather: cold, little sun, clouds, overcast, windy
Air Temp: high 30ies/low 40ies

Water Temp: 39F at 11am
Flow: 18cfs, clear, no runoff (duh, too cold!)
Day on the water in 2012: 6
Fish: 17 hooked, landed 9

PS: don't forget the "Your Tenkara Story" contest, submission deadline is March 31st.  


  1. Nice pics of the fish. I have been thinking about the tanango rods for my 8 year old son. I'll be interested to read more of your thoughts on the rod.

  2. Sounds like the new rod worked great, and like the release box.

  3. Looks like a very nice day out on the water. How do you carry the release box? Is it kind of bulky to carry? I could definitely see myself using one of those when I fish around ponds and lakes. Nice post.

  4. Karel, sounds like another great day on Bear Creek!

    That release box is AWESOME! I love how you can get great pictures without having to rush to get the fish back in the water. I'm too lazy to make one. Nice job!

  5. Steve - the tanago rods are super light and easily suitable for a kid. I would probably go with one of the shorter rods though to start with.

    Kevin - thanks!

    Chris - I carry the box over the shoulder, just like my bag. I think that from watching some Japanese tenkara videos they do it the same. There is not much added bulkt, the box is only 2.5" deep and it's very light. I am thinking of alternative solutions though, i.e. like a quick release with magnets on your fishing bag or belt.

    Jason - thanks, that is exactly the intention of the box. I don't buy the "too lazy" part though...

  6. Good idea, the release box. Also gets good pictures of the fish without all those hands and rods in the way.


  7. Mark - thanks, but I can't take credit for the idea, just for the my attempt to create one. But I agree, it's great for taking picture while keeping fish in the water where they belong.

  8. I just ordered the 10'3" Daiwa tanago rod from Chris. I saw it at the SowBug roundup and just had to have one! I can't wait to try it out

  9. Wayne - would be nice if you could let me know how you like it. Do you have other tenkara rods to compare it to?