My daughter's first trout

by Tom Davis
(Inkom, ID USA)

I am new to Tenkara, though I have been western fly fishing for over 25 years. I have been impressed with the "uncluttered" technique of Tenkara and so I thought that I would take my daughter out on the river and let her try. She has never fly fished and only has cast western-style a few times on our front lawn. The day was a cold 27 degrees with a slight but steady breeze.

I took her to the river, we suited up and walked out carefully into the water. We moved to a pocket in the river where I knew there were fish. After brief instruction I had her cast at the head of the pocket. She was using my new Iwana 12', furled leader, 2.5 ft 6x fluorocarbon tippet. She had two flies on: #14 olive Czech nymph with orange hotspot (dropper) and #18 Copper John (end fly). I had previously thead a 1" section of orange Kahuna LT indicator onto the tippet and secured it at the loop-to-loop leader-tippet connection. This gave her something to focus on.

The first two presentations went unanswered but on the third the indicator paused and she lifted the rod tip. Fish on!!! After a brief fight narrated with giggles she brought the fish to hand. It was a 10" rainbow -- not a trophy but perfect for her first fish. She removed the Copper John and let him swim away. All in all, she caught a total of 6 fish in 20 minutes. I took the rod from her to let her hands warm up (at least that is what I told her) and caught 8 more in 15 minutes. Because we were cold we then packed up and went and got a hamburger.

Looks like I am going to have to get her her own Tenkara setup!

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