U K - Upper Tees Tenkara Heaven
by Steve Donohue
Sold on the principle of a simplified approach to fly fishing, I took the plunge and purchased a 12’ Iwana earlier this season.
My first outing with the new rod was a trip to the upper Tees above High Force waterfall. I can’t think of any fly fishing experience to better catching wild trout from boulder strewn pocket water and in my opinion the upper Tees is as good as it gets in the UK. The fish were rising freely to a well drifted fly and the advantages of a longer rod with improved control were immediately obvious. The crucial ability to slow the drift and track the seams and current lines (so difficult even with an 11’ fly rod and fly line) was a revelation with the tenkara. I was hooked and so were 40 odd feisty 9-11” wild brownies!
Since my first trip I have used the tenkara on a variety of streams and I’m finding it hard to go back to conventional gear. For me this simplified approach is enhancing the whole experience to the point where I will always use the tenkara where I can. For next season I’m going to invest in the new Ito, I can see a big advantage in having the option of two lengths of rod on most waters.
Tenkara eliminates most of the restrictions a rod and line places on presenting the fly in a natural manner. Tenkara is simply better!
“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin
"Study to be quiet." - Izaak Walton 1653
"Be sure in casting, that your fly fall first into the water, for if the line fall first, it scares or frightens the fish..." Col. Robert Venables 1662
The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.
Beware of the Dogma