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How Many Tenkara Rods Do You Have?

by Karl Klavon
(Fresno, California)

The other day one of my fishing friends asked me, How many Tenkara rods do you have?

My answer was, I don't really know - I have never gotten them all out and counted them.

But a few days later, I did dig them out to do a count. Here are this Fixed Line angler's rod count results:

Tenkara Rods - 2

The Esoteric 206/245 (6' 9" and 8' 1") Zoom Rod - (14 and 15.5 pennies), and a Dragon-Tail Mizuchi ZX 340, a 24, 29, and 34 lengths, (16,17, & 18 pennies respectively) small stream fishing special zoom rod, new this year and not fished yet - Trout season opens the last Saturday in April.

Keriyu Rods - 2

The Tenkara Bum Traveler 39, 10' 5", 11' 8", 12' 10", (18.5, 21, and 21.5 pennies) and Diawa's 43 MF @ 12' 7" and 14' 1" (and 28 and 33 pennies).

Seriyu Rods - 6

A Diawa Soykaze 27 SR, (just under 9 Ft. long and no longer available - 17.5 pennies), a Nissin Royal Stage 330 (8 pennies), a Suntech Kurenai 33 (9 pennies). The reason there are two 33s is because I broke the tip section on the Kurenai and my wife suggested that I buy another rod as a back up. Gotta love that woman! A Gamakatsu Ryokei 360. And a Nissin SP 390 and an Nissin Air Stage 390, so 10 rods in all.

To many anglers, (T-anglers or otherwise) this might seem like an excessive number of rods to own. And it probably is, but there is more to it than just X-number of rods.

The two Tenkara rods are specialized for fishing extremely small, and very brushy, tree canopied small streams.

The Keriyu rods are for fishing in warm and cold stillwaters (and for streams as well in the cases of the the Traveler rod) with weighted wet flies and small streamers, as well as with dry flies with considerable wind resistance to casting and almost daily thermal winds to deal with on the high lakes in the afternoons with Floating fly lines. The 43 MF is my bass and float tube T-fishing rod, for lake (long-line) trolling with sinking lines, as well as fishing with floating PVC coated floating T-lines. The 43 MF is rated at 28 and 33 pennies.

The Seriyu rods are more for fishing for small fish in small streams as well as in ponds and lakes, with the 33s dedicated to creek fishing almost exclusively. The 360 was a gift from my son, bought while he was on a business trip to Japan, and my wife brought it back with her from her pleasure trip with him. It was hard to get in Japan, the most expensive fixed line rod I own, would be hard to get parts for, and consequently I don't fish it much. The two 390 rods are about the same length and weights, but the SP 390 is only an 8 penny rod, while the Air Stage is a 16 penny rod, so there is a considerable difference in the ability to handle wind, bigger fish, and weighted flies. The SP can make unbelievably gentle dry fly presentations and is a very smooth casting joy to fish with.

So while owning 10 different rods sounds like a lot, they each have their different fishing functions to fill, and they were accumulated over about a 10 year period of time. There were other rods acquired during that time that did not turn out to be Keepers. But for now, at least, I am well satisfied with what I have....Karl.

Comments for How Many Tenkara Rods Do You Have?

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Feb 11, 2020
How Many?
by: John Evans

Karl,
My answer is always the same, regardless of the actual number: "One less than I need."

Feb 11, 2020
More than I thought!
by: Les Albjerg

Karl - I'm not sure why my first response didn't post. It may have been too long. Total count at this time is 21 fixed line rods. They go from 8 meters down to 1.5 meters. The TenkaraBum 40 gets the most work. If I have room, I fish the Suntech Fine Power 54. Most of my rods are Keiryu rods. I have only one Seiryu rod. It is my favorite for sunfish.

Rods come and then they go. I cannot believe the Nissin Kyogi series is gone! I'm glad I have all 4. I'll be fishing them with 1x or 2x from now on as I don't want to break one. All of my rods fill a niche. I have sold several. I will not have closet queens!

My last 3 rods were bought for upstream worm fishing. I have a passion for my Red Wigglers! Two of them are Honryu rods. I'm really loving the Nissin Air Stage Honryu 450. I'm moving toward more full flex as I look at my rods.

And Yes! Like John I have my eye on another one!

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“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin

"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

As age slows my pace, I will become more like the heron.


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The hooks are sharp.
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The fish are slippery when wet.

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