The Kiyotaki 27 is the closest rod I've found to the popular but discontinued Soyokaze 27. It isn't exactly like the Soyokaze, but I think it will be well received. I am sure it will prove to be very effective for tenkara fishing in thousands of really small streams where a longer rod just won't work. It will also work in spots in larger streams where it is just too tight for a longer rod.
The Kiyotaki 24 is 7'10" and the Kiyotaki 27 is 8'10". Rods of that length do put an extreme emphasis on stealth, but some streams are just too overgrown for a standard tenkara rod. Some tenkara advocates suggest that on narrow, brushy, overgrown streams you can collapse a section and choke up on the rod. With a section collapsed the rod rattles when you cast and the sensitivity that allows you to feel the slightest tick on the line is gone. If you frequently fish tight overgrown streams, you would appreciate a shorter rod. I still maintain you should use the longest rod you can get away with, but face it, for some streams the longest rod you can get away with is shorter than any tenkara rod.
On wider streams, where you might normally use a 12 footer, there may be a number of spots that are too tight for the longer rod. More and more, on streams I often fish, I notice spots that I've always had to pass up because they were just too tight. With a shorter rod in my backpack, now I'm taking fish in spots where before I couldn't even cast.
A well respected blogger admits to just walking past all those spots that are too tight for his tenkara rods. The thing is, though, those spots that no one can fish often hold fish. If you did want to fish where no one else can fish, and catch fish that no one else can catch, these rods will allow you to.
I have offered the shorter Kiyotaki rods as micro fishing rods for some time and they have been well received. The 7'10" Kiyotaki 24 is getting to the length where it is useful for tenkara fishing on extremely small and very tight streams. It is the rod that I include in the very popular Kids Tenkara Kit. Despite its short length, it is a surprisingly capable rod. The largest fish I have ever caught while tenkara fishing, a 20 1/2" smallmouth bass, was caught with that rod.
At 8'10", the Kiyotaki 27 is a full foot longer than the 24, and is a more capable rod. For streams that are brush choked or have a low canopy that just can't fish, it will prove to be very useful.
People have reported catches of 15" and 16" trout on the Soyokaze 27. Based on the penny ratings, the Kiyotaki 27 should be a more capable rod than the Soyokaze. The Soyokaze 27 is a 17.5 penny rod. The Kiyotaki 27 is a 20 penny rod - which puts it right between the Shimano LLS33NX at 19 pennies and Shimano LLS36NX at 21. Pretty good company, I'd say.
The Kiyotaki 24 is a 15 penny rod, but not because it is softer than the 27. It is just shorter and the additional stiff section of the Kiyotaki 27 makes it the more capable rod.
13" cutthroat caught on a Kiyotaki 24
The Kiyotaki 24 and 27 share features with the shorter Kiyotaki rods. The 24 is extremely light at just 1 ounce, and the Kiyotaki 24 is only a little heavier at 1.3 ounces. Both pack down to only 15 1/8". The extended rods may be a bit short to be a backpacker's "go to" rod, unless of course he goes to really small streams, in which case these rods deserve serious consideration.
The grip is basically the blank itself with some non-skid bands. It is fairly narrow at just under 3/4" but I have not found that to be a problem - at least not in the spring, summer or fall, when you don't have to fish wearing gloves. If it seems small, you could always do what they do in Japan when they use rods that don't have cork grips for tenkara fishing (which they do!), which is to add some tennis racquet grip wrap.
The lillian is held on with a swivel, a feature found in the high end Daiwa tenkara rods. The grip screw cap has a rubber insert to keep the rod quiet when collapsed, a rubber "O" ring to prevent it from working loose, and a ventilation hole - also features found on expensive rods.
Length extended: 7'10"
Length collapsed: 15 1/8"
Weight: 1.0 ounces
Recommended tippet: 5X
Length extended: 8'10"
Length collapsed: 15 1/8"
Weight: 1.3 ounces
Recommended tippet: 5X
Rods made in Korea.
If you like the idea of a shorter rod that will allow you to fish in the tightest of streams but would consider upgrading to a nicer rod, please take a look at the Nissin Air Stage 240 seiryu rod. It is lighter and more sensitive, but it is a small rods for small fish - not for 20" smallmouth bass!
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Tenkara has no strict rules. Enjoy tenkara in your own way.
- Eiji Yamakawa
It is fun!! It casts well. It fits in your pocket. It weighs next to nothing. It has plenty of backbone for little (and sometimes not so little) fish. I definitely like it and will use it where my other rods can't go!
Tom D, Idaho
|Fishing a small creek which feeds a local lake, I cught my first trout on the Kitoyaki 27 I bought last week. It was a 12" brown caught on a sakasa kebari I tied earlier that day. The rod had no issues with that size fish. My friend who bought the other Kitoyaki 27 didn't get a trout because he couldn't stop catching bluegills. His 3.5 year old son caught his first fish on the same setup. After an hour of fishing he turned to me and said "I'm already thinking of getting another rod." Me too.
Mark D, Pennsylvania
|Just wanted to say once again, Kiyotaki 27 YES! Soft tip, responsive, handles small to medium fish with ease and even ticks when a mosquito fish hits it. I caught this one on a size 12 kebari with black thread body and white rooster hackle. Just for dressing I put some peacock hurl behind the hackle to keep the little guys from gulping it down.
Jimi H, Missouri