Covid-19 Announcement

Most international flights have been cancelled.

There is no ETA for out-of-stock items that come from Japan.

Shipments to overseas buyers will take longer than normal - possibly much longer. Patience is a virtue - especially in fishing.

Tenkara Fishing Blog

The Tenkara Fishing Blog is a mini journal about tenkara. It will let you know whenever any new pages on TenkaraBum are uploaded or if there are significant changes in existing pages. It will also help keep you up to date with what's new in tenkara fishing in the US.

Jul 03, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

3x5 Photo Tank Large enough for multiple minnows, fingerling trout or very small sunfish. Keeps 'em wet while you get your photo. Back in stock.

Micro Photo Tank Perfect size for smaller micros. Keeps 'em wet while you get your photo. Back in stock.

Jul 01, 2020

Independence Day Sale

Daiwa Seiryu X rods now on sale (20-25% off regular prices).
Sale limited to rods currently in stock (supplies are limited).

Seiryu X 35 - $100
Seiryu X 45 - $100
Seiryu X 55 - $110
Seiryu X 65 - $120

Daiwa Seiryu X

Continue reading "Independence Day Sale"

Jul 01, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Fuji KTC-12 Rod Caps More secure and harder to lose than tenkara rod tip plugs. Occasionally called "Universal Caps," The Fuji Rod Caps come in different sizes. The KTC-12 caps will fit most 320-360 length tenkara rods. They fit the TenkaraBum 33, 36 and 40, and the TenkaraBum Traveler 39. Back in stock.

Jun 28, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Fuji EZ Keeper Handy clip to hold your line when your rod is collapsed. Two are needed for fixed line rods. Back in stock.

Jun 28, 2020

Punching My Tanago Card----Finally!

I love multi-species fishing. I was attracted to fly fishing because I figured lots of fish species would like those buggy little flies. I've been an enthusiastic

Continue reading "Punching My Tanago Card----Finally!"

Jun 21, 2020

Fun while it lasted

I got my TenkaraBum 36 rod just a few weeks and kept my old (bad) habit of walking through trees and brush with a fully extended rod. Should have known

Continue reading "Fun while it lasted"

Jun 20, 2020

Tune up

One of the highlights for me each summer is a trip to the best golden trout fishery in the state. It’s a brutal hike, but it calls me back every time.

Continue reading "Tune up"

Jun 20, 2020

Father's Day Sale

June 20-21 only.

Nissin Tenkara Level Line 360 just $150
Nissin Tenkara Level Line 390 just $155

The Nissin Tenkara Level Line rod's action is a pleasant, slow full flex. It is well suited for small to medium streams. A size 3 or 3.5 level line would do nicely, although the rod can handle a 4 if there is a bit of a breeze. For wider streams, you can cast a line a bit longer than the rod.

The action is more conducive to traditional Japanese tenkara with an unweighted wet fly than to fishing deep with bead head nymphs.

Actually, it is more conducive to traditional Japanese tenkara than most of the rods offered by American tenkara companies.

Nissin Tenkara Level Line rods are made in Japan.

Nissin Level Line TEnkara

Continue reading "Father's Day Sale"

Jun 17, 2020

Variety is the Spice of Life

When I got serious about fly fishing years ago, I decided I was not going to be a one-trick pony: dry fly purist, streamer junkie, euro practitioner, or

Continue reading "Variety is the Spice of Life"

Jun 15, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

ZimmerBuilt Spin/BFS Guide Sling, Sling Lite, Chest Pack, Strap Pack Excellent slings and small packs made by a tenkara angler for tenkara anglers. Back in stock.

Jun 12, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Suntech Fine Power NP66 One of the very best keiyru rods. Back in stock.

Daiwa Keiryu-X 33 Fits in a backpack, but stiffer than ideal for tenkara fishing. Back in stock.

3x5 Photo Tank Keeps larger micros (or multiple smaller ones) wet. Allows better photos and easier ID. Back in stock.

Micro Fishing Photo Tank Keeps smaller micros wet. Smaller size makes it much easier to pack. Back in stock.

Micro fishing floats Small floats made specifically for micro fishing. Smaller size makes it much easier to pack. Back in stock.

Micro fishing tippet connectors These make it much easie to connect snelled tanago hooks to your main line. Back in stock.

Micro fishing line winders Easily hold and store pre-rigged micro fishing or keiryu lines. Back in stock.

Owner Super Yamame hooks Eyeless keiryu hook for tenkara flies or keiryu fishing. Back in stock.

Jun 11, 2020

Papa, can we catch one that isn't slimy?

Earlier this week my wife Mary and I took our 6 year old granddaughter, Alison, camping with us in the Wisconsin Driftless area. I brought along a Shimotsuke

Continue reading "Papa, can we catch one that isn't slimy?"

Jun 11, 2020

Back to Basics

Last year I took several out of state trout trips and two saltwater vacations. This year not so much. My disappointment at having to cancel some spring

Continue reading "Back to Basics"

Jun 07, 2020

Keiryu Tactical Nymphing

Keiryu Tactical Nymphing, or perhaps more more appropriately, “Tactical Nymphing with a Keiryu Rod and Line” offers some decided advantages over using either a tenkara rod or a fly rod.

Tactical Nymphing, as explained by Rob Worthing of the Tenkara Guides, LLC, has general principles rather than strict rules. Two of those principles are light weight and low profile. Using relatively small, lightly weighted nymphs and a thin (low profile) line is somewhat similar to the “zero” niche within Japanese keiryu fishing, which uses a small bait on a light wire hook, a small split shot and thin line. In both cases, the goal of the light weight and the thin line is to achieve the most natural drift possible.

The most obvious advantages that a keiryu rod provides are the greater length and the ability to fish with an extremely thin line.Keiryu markers

Continue reading "Keiryu Tactical Nymphing"

Jun 07, 2020

Nikko Waxworm

The Nikko Waxworm is an artificial waxworm. I had gotten a package years ago on one of my visits to Japan and although I caught fish with them I never did import them. I don't remember why I didn't, but some oversights are easy to fix.

I've done well fishing with waxworms for both trout and panfish. Real waxworms don't stay on the hook well, though. A waxworm is basically a tiny little oblong bag full of goo. Puncture the skin with a hook and before too long all the goo is gone.

The Nikko Waxworm solves that problem. It stays on the hook well. The plastic is really quite durable and will last for lots of fish.

Nikko Waxworm

Continue reading "Nikko Waxworm"

May 27, 2020

Silver Lining

In no way would I want to minimize the effect of the global pandemic on the United States of America. At the time of this writing, there are 1.7 million

Continue reading "Silver Lining"

May 20, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Shimano Pack Tenkara Premium zoom rod with short collapsed length. Back in stock.

Owner Micro Fishing Rigs Hook, line and sinker. 120 and 240cm lengths Back in stock.

Gamakatsu New Half Moon snelled tanago hooks Replacement for Owner New Half Moon snelled hooks. New Item.

Daiwa Figure 8 Tool Extremely handy tool for tying knots and holding small flies. Back in stock.

Yamatoyo size 3 tenkara line Hi-vis chartreuse level fluorocarbon line. Back in stock.

Shimano Net Leash Prevents you from losing your net. Back in stock.

May 19, 2020

Tenkara Rolling Warriors

During my first tenkara trout fishing experience in a small stream in upstate NY, and enjoying catch two nice brook trout, it dawned on me that my wheelchair

Continue reading "Tenkara Rolling Warriors "

May 03, 2020

Fixed Line Muddler Minnow

Fixed line Muddler Minnow? Are you kidding?

Three years after developing the Keeper Kebari, which I've frequently called the best fly I've ever used for bass, I "discovered" what has proven to be the second best fly I've used for bass. It might actually be just as effective, but I haven't used it as much.

It isn't nearly as easy to tie as a Keeper Kebari, but I do like the fly a lot.

Don Gapen style Muddler Minnow

I put the "discovered" in quotes because the fly has been around for over 80 years! I just discovered that a Muddler Minnow - specifically a Muddler tied very much like Don Gapen first tied it in 1936 or 1937 - is really an excellent bass fly!

Continue reading "Fixed Line Muddler Minnow"

Apr 28, 2020

Careful with Tippet

I was browsing J Stockard fly shop online for some fly tying supplies, and out of curiousity looked at the Rio tippets they had. I saw one specifically,

Continue reading "Careful with Tippet"

Apr 27, 2020

Tenkara Fishing for Spring Crappie

I decided to take Friday off and do a little tenkara fishing for crappie. Had a pretty nice day with several large crappie and bass. I was fishing the

Continue reading "Tenkara Fishing for Spring Crappie"

Apr 26, 2020

The Trifecta

It’s transition time here in Montana. The local streams are starting to turn color and will soon be rising. A few days ago I tried my hand with smallies

Continue reading "The Trifecta"

Apr 25, 2020

Redear Sunfish Have Bad Attitudes

Here in South Central Texas, we have many kinds of panfish, and they’re all fun on light tenkara gear. Bluegills, Redbreast, and Green Sunfish all provide

Continue reading "Redear Sunfish Have Bad Attitudes"

Apr 24, 2020

A New Normal Story

As part of our isolation routine my wife and I walk our dog down by the river. Social distancing observed, we can get out and get a little exercise. There

Continue reading "A New Normal Story"

Apr 24, 2020

unexpected consequences

We're pretty well locked down with the virus here. Only a few river spots to fish. With the layoffs the rivers are more crowded than usual. What I didn't

Continue reading "unexpected consequences"

Apr 23, 2020

The Unanticipated Consequences of Using a Light Rod

This is something Chris failed to mention in his description and experiences with the Suntech Kurenai. My Kurenai 33R weighs just 1.1 oz. and is a fun

Continue reading "The Unanticipated Consequences of Using a Light Rod"

Apr 21, 2020

Asking for advice from Chris

This is not a review of equipment, as such, but a review of the customer service I’ve gotten from Chris Stewart, aka Tenkara Bum. With sooooo many possibilities

Continue reading "Asking for advice from Chris"

Apr 16, 2020

Lockdown Sale

Lockdown Sale - Business is a bit slow, some rods are overstocked and it's probably time for some spring cleaning. What better time for a sale?

The following rods are on sale until they are gone or until the lockdown here is over or until I change my mind, whichever comes first.

Daiwa Expert Tenkara LT 33 - $210 (originally $260)
Daiwa Expert Tenkara LT 36 - $220 (originally $280)
Daiwa Expert Tenkara LT 39 - $250 (originally $310)
Daiwa Expert Tenkara LT H44 - $280 (originally $350)
Daiwa Expert Tenkara LL 36 - $225 (originally $285)
Daiwa Kiyose 43M-Y - $120 (originally $150)
Suntech Aoi ZPRO 58 - $240(originally $300)
Suntech Aoi ZPRO 63 - $250(originally $320)
Nissin Air Stage Hakubai 340 medium - $125 (originally $175)

Nissin Air Stage Hakubai 340

Continue reading "Lockdown Sale"

Apr 02, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Medium and Large Rod Cases Light weight, semi-rigid, inexpensive rod cases. Back in stock.

Daiwa Keiryu Damo 25cm Tenkara sized and shaped net. Round 10" hoop. Black net bag. Back in stock.

Wide-Eyed Hooks Originally designed as replacement hooks for small spoons, these hooks make very nice kebari and Overhand Worms. Back in stock.

Micro Fishing Tippet Connectors They make it very easy to attach snelled tanago hooks to your main line. Back in stock.

Mar 29, 2020


The Suntech PROSPEC RC rods are a new series of three-position zoom keiryu rods. The RC stands for Range Change - highlighting the versatility of adjusting the rod length for different stream widths.

The rods come in three versions, soft (中硬), medium (硬中硬), and stiff (硬調). The soft is really quite reminiscent of the discontinued Suikei ZPRO, the medium is somewhat similar to the Keiryu Special 53 (also discontinued) or the Field Master 53. The stiff is stiffer than the Field Master.

Suntech PROSPEC RC52 soft

Continue reading "Suntech PROSPEC RC"

Mar 26, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Owner Micro Fishing Rigs Line, float, markers, shot, hook. All you need except for rod, line winder and bait. New Items.

Wakasagi Rigs Multiple hook rigs, similar to sabiki rigs for micros. New Items.

Mar 22, 2020

Keeping your distance - keeping your sanity

These are strange times! Good thing we have a solitary sport. At least most of the time. Early yesterday morning I had to run some errands for my wife

Continue reading "Keeping your distance - keeping your sanity"

Mar 21, 2020

Shimano Maystone 36 NW

The Shimano Maystone 36 NW is a bit different from any other tenkara rod. It doesn't have a lillian. It has a wood insert in it's cork grip.

It has a hook holder.

It appears that the design goal was to make a tenkara rod that would appeal to fly fishermen.

Having read the above, you might think I don't like the rod. Actually, I do. A lot. The Shimano Maystone 36 NW is really a very nice rod.

Shimano Maystone 36 NWTom D. Photo

Continue reading "Shimano Maystone 36 NW"

Mar 18, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Rodio-craft Blinde Flanker New colors of the .5g Rodio-craft Blinde Flanker spoon. Back in stock.

Mar 18, 2020

Chadwick's No. 477

Several holidays ago, my wife purchased 30 feet of the original Chadwick’s No. 477 yarn, which Frank Sawyer used to tie his Killer Bug. This grayish, pinkish

Continue reading "Chadwick's No. 477"

Mar 12, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Wader Gaiter Protect your expensive waders from thorns, barbed wire, your own flies, etc. Also provides come cushioning when kneeling for stealth. Back in stock.

Mar 06, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Suntech Fine Power NP66 Truly excellent keiryu rod. About the longest length before rods get a bit too much inertia. Back in stock.

Nissin Oni Line size 3.5, both pink and orange Very popular, extremely visible level line. Back in stock.

Varivas 5X Nylon Tippet Excellent tippet in most popular strength for tenkara. Back in stock.

New Half Moon Snelled Tanago Hooks Versatile hook for micro fishing. Back in stock.

Tanago Floats The standard. Back in stock.

Mar 04, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Dr. Slick Spring Creek Clamps Curved clamps with very sharp points. Excellent for micro fishing. Back in stock.

Feb 28, 2020

Two Types of Lightweight Tenkara Trips

Recently I’ve been enjoying two kinds of ultralight tenkara trips that I would like to share with readers. I’m fortunate to live in South Central Texas,

Continue reading "Two Types of Lightweight Tenkara Trips"

Feb 25, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Nissin Tanago Koro Nice 5' tanago rod. Back in stock.

Daiwa Hinata 3' tanago rod for when you can get close. Back in stock.

Feb 24, 2020

More Fish: Isla Mujeres 2020

Here's some more saltwater fish. The Power Isome Sandworms are my go to bait, mainly because I can't find shrimp on the island. Every restaurant sells

Continue reading "More Fish: Isla Mujeres 2020"

Feb 24, 2020


Our trip to Isla Mujeres Mexico this winter featured much improved weather compared to last year's five inches of rain. My fishing began as usual with


Feb 11, 2020

Kids Tenkara Rod

A Kids Tenkara Rod should be light enough for a kid to handle and have an action that will teach proper casting form.

I've offered kids rods for years, and for years I have been at least mildly dissatisfied with them. Up until now, I've offered rods that were short and inexpensive. Short because a shorter, lighter rod is easier for a small child to handle. Inexpensive because a lot of parents don't want to spend a lot of money on a rod that a kid will soon outgrow.

However, I now think a better approach is to not focus on a "Kids Tenkara Rod" at all, but instead to choose a rod that is light enough for a kid to handle, but one that is long enough and nice enough that a kid isn't going to outgrow it.

Nissin Pro Square Super Tenkara 320 6:4

Continue reading "Kids Tenkara Rod"

Feb 10, 2020

How Many Tenkara Rods Do You Have?

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

Continue reading "How Many Tenkara Rods Do You Have?"

Feb 09, 2020

Crane Creek: Knowing vs. Doing

We're at an interesting point in American Tenkara. After ten years, Tenkara is widely known in the fly fishing world, has attracted enthusiastic participants

Continue reading "Crane Creek: Knowing vs. Doing"

Feb 04, 2020

The Long and Short of It

I debated and debated about getting a rod around 3.3 meters. To be honest, several of the creeks I fish locally are just too brushy for my 4 meter rods,

Continue reading "The Long and Short of It"

Jan 31, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Daiwa Expert Tenkara LT H44 In my opinion, the best "Big Fish" tenkara rod on the planet. Back in stock.

Jan 30, 2020

This Just In...

New items and out-of-stocks that are back in stock.

Nissin Air Stage Honryu 450 Surprisingly light, smooth casting, capable Honryu Tenkara rod. Back in stock.

Suntech Field Master Suguru Long H54 Nice, light weight keiryu rod for 8X-4X tippet. Back in stock.

Tenkara Creel TrailLite Designs creel weighs little and folds almost flat. Back in stock.

Flies Killer Bug, Killer Bugger, Keeper Kebari, Royal Sakasa Kebari. Back in stock.

Gamakatsu Ultimate Tanago hooks with extremely short points for the smallest fish. Back in stock.

Gamakatsu Smallest Tanago hooks with longer points for the larger fish (chubs, juvenile sunfish, etc). Back in stock.

Owner "Reluctant Wakasagi" rigs Multi-hook rig, similar to a sabiki rig, with tanago sized hooks. Back in stock.

Snelled Ayu hooks Appropriate size and shape for flies that would look like Ayu flies (gold leaf not included). New item.

Tenjo Line Hi-vis fluorocarbon line for the top section of a keiryu rig. Back in stock.

Jan 28, 2020

Yokohama Fishing Show

On January 17 and 18 I attended the Yokohama Fishing Show as a guest of Tenryu. My primary goal for the show was to visit with Tenryu Chairman Miyoshi Shiozawa, Fishing Tackle Division Manager Takuya Shiozawa and product development and sales personnel to discuss their new Rayz and Rayz Spectra spinning and baitcasting rods.

However, I did get to meet Sebata san, who is rightfully a legend among tenkara anglers, and to see Dr. Ishigaki, who was at the show to give a tenkara lecture and casting demonstration. I also met my arch competitor, Keiichi Okushi, who is living proof that competitors can be friends, and with whom I hope to fish on a subsequent trip to Japan (as long as he promises we won't be climbing up any waterfalls, which seems to be central to his genryu fishing).

I was also fortunate enough to meet a maker of Edo Wazao, traditional Japanese bamboo rods; and a tyer of Banshu Kebari, traditional Japanese flies for Ayu fishing.

With Sebata san and Chairman Shiozawa

Continue reading "Yokohama Fishing Show"

“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.


The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.

Beware of the Dogma