Showing posts from January, 2012

Tenkara Tuesday - A New Controversy?

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday.

As many of you may already be aware, I was lucky enough to meet a lot of tenkara-minded folks at the Fly Fishing Show last weekend.  It was a tenkara summit of sorts, albeit in Somerset rather than Salt Lake City...or at least a tenkara blogger summit, which in my opinion is just as good.

Now Daniel from Tenkara USA has already mentioned this little meetup on his blog, but in reading his post and looking at the pictures, there's just one thing that seems a little off.  It appears that for whatever the reason, Daniel doctored the group picture.  I guess it's probably because he wants to lay low following his week of tenkontroversy, but I figured I should probably publish the actual photo, you know, just to keep things real:

Sorry Daniel, your secret is out, wookies prefer tenkara too.

Are you a Western tenkara angler? Do you have a story, pictures, video, fly recipe, or simply a fi…

The Art of VK Steelworks

Stumbling into the vast sea of "stuff" that is the Somerset, NJ Fly Fishing Show yesterday, one of the first things that immediately caught my eye was a stunning wall sculpture of a wet fly made of steel, looking aggressively medieval.  Actually, I think my reaction was, "damn, that's crazy..." as I went in for a closer look.

Once in the booth, Matt (aka Functioning Fishaholic, who made the trip to NJ with me) & I were greeted by Val Kropiwnicki of VK Steelworks, who eagerly showed off this beautiful piece of art, in addition to many other smaller flies that were pretty much beyond anything I had seen before.  I'm not exactly sure what you'd call them, perhaps fly tying with a touch of fantasy...but do I know you would not want to get stuck by the "Circus Circus" during an errant backcast!!!

Honestly, I could go on, but anything I write will not really give this work justice.  It's so visual in nature, I'm going to stop with the a…

Gear Review - The Dead Drift DVD

Anybody who knows me also knows that my tenkara rod fully telescopes every time I think about fishing in New Zealand.  So when Steve from Stealth Films dropped me a note about a month ago offering up a copy of his DVD "The Dead Drift," there was no way I was going to turn that down.  I mean that would just be crazy talk.

Not really knowing what "The Dead Drift" was all about, I settled in to watch it last weekend, eagerly anticipating beautiful landscapes and big ass NZ trout.
Well it didn't disappoint.
Hosted by Dean Bell, of Blue Ribbon Wilderness Guides, "The Dead Drift" is basically a 60+ minute long video on how to spot trout, read water, and manipulate your flies properly in several different real-world fishing situations as he takes us into the Wilderness Waters of Fiordland, South Island, New Zealand.

Now for those of you that prefer your fly fishing movies to be more entertainment than instructional, this one probably isn't for you.  Just…

Social Media - Yet Another Reason Why Klout Is Stupid

If you squinted hard enough to read that first Klout "Notification," no, that wasn't Photoshopped.
To quote:
"Klout believes you are influential in Congress."
Let that soak in for a minute.

(Putting Klout's ridiculously erratic scoring method aside), if that is true, America has far more to worry about than we thought...

+Ks & T! stickers for everyone!

Have no idea what Klout is or why I'm doling out +Ks?  No, it has nothing to do with cereal or Marts, and don't worry, most people haven't heard about it either.  Just uber dorks like me.  If you want to learn more about it, click here, but be forewarned, you're probably better off not getting involved in such shenanigans and tomfoolery.

Enough 'Tenkara Is A Fad' Already...

Okay, this "Tenkara Is A Fad" thing has gotten a little out of control.  Daniel Galhardo, (aka Mr. Tenkara USA) tweeted - and then later wrote a blog post - about a recent run in with Lefty Kreh and bloggers start writing up a storm, both pro & con.  We got this guy, this guy, this guy, and this guyjust as examples.  There are a lot more, but I choose not to bore you by piling on.  Just Google "Tenkara is a fad" and you'll get more reading than you could possibly handle on such a meaningless topic.

Is tenkara a fad?  Other than Daniel, who has a business interest in tenkara, who really cares?  It might be a fad, but then again "authorities" on particular subjects have been wrong in the past...

"This 'telephone' has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us."
-- Western Union internal memo, 1876.

"Taking the best left-handed pitcher in baseball and…

Another Week, Another Airport

The drive to and from the airport has been far too familiar the past few weeks. I'll be pretty quiet through probably Wednesday. In the meantime, enjoy the peace and quiet...

A Random Product from the Cabela's Fishing Catalog

I received the 2012 Cabela's fishing catalog the other day.  I used to really look forward to getting this bad boy every year (along with the competition's version from Bass Pro Shops), but when I sort of made the move from spin fishing to fly/tenkara just isn't the same.  They've got different catalogs for that.
However, since I'm a gear junkie at heart, I still do enjoy going through the pages and soaking in all that's new for this year.  A few quick flips show that we've got all the latest & greatest stuff you don't really need, including micro guide baitcast rods, trolling reels with computer screens, enough new lures to fill 20 Alabama rigs, and of course some of the most "old mannish" looking footwear I've ever laid eyes upon.  Almost as bad as those velcro shoes you can sometimes see next to the elastic waist slacks in the coupon section of the Sunday newspaper.

Anyway, I thought I'd play a game today.  …

Tenkara Thursday - Salvation In Tenkara?

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday Thursday.

I was checking my twitter stream the other day and came across this:

It actually wasn't hard to spot, as I not only follow Tenkara USA, but also a few of the re-tweeters.
Now I love tenkara, but a statement as bold as "salvation for the dying fly fishing industry" is something that I thing requires full context that a 140 character tweet can't capture.  I mean (Patagonia founder) Yvon Chouinard probably has a reason for stating the above, right?

So I went to go check out the article, located on page 14 of the 2012 Blue Ribbon Flies catalog.  (Please go read the article, it's quite good, far better than this post).  The quote is neatly summarized in the last paragraph by the following: "I say it could be the savior of the sport of fly fishing because it is simple, inexpensive, and can be taught to an eight year old in minutes." Well I guess the reasoning makes sense...tenkara is pretty easy to pick up, and you can cat…


A lot of prominent websites will be going "black" today in protest of SOPA.  While I won't be going black since I don't control Blogger or Google, in lieu of a post, I ask you to please watch the video below and visit the link HEREfor more infomation.  This is a serious issue, and a slippery slope for future internet use, blogs included.

PROTECT IP / SOPA Breaks The Internet from Fight for the Future on Vimeo.

Normal posting will resume tomorrow.

Social Media - What The F#@k Is Pinterest Anyway...

From time to time I actually attempt to write a helpful or informative post around here.  It's not very often, but today's as good as any.  I'll warn you in advance, this is kinda long...albeit with pretty pictures...

The topic of social's everywhere these days. And many of you readers being fellow bloggers probably think it's the responsible thing to do to extend your blog's reach to the popular social networks at your disposal. You probably have a Facebook Fan Page, a Twitter account, and maybe even find yourself on Google+ from time to time. The ultra ambitious may StumbleUpon, Digg, or find themselves having Klout.

At this point, you've probably heard of another one as well, Pinterest.  But what to make of this Pinterest thing that is lurking on the edges and growing like wildfire, despite still being in "invitation only" mode?  To find out for myself, I signed up to be on the Pinterest waiting list, and three days later I was i…

Gear Review - Margaritaville Polarized Sunglasses

I think I may have inadvertently become some sort of sunglasses reviewer guru or something.  I've done a review on these and these, so when Margaritaville Eyewear approached me a few months ago about doing a review on their sunglasses...I mean how could I say no?  Especially as one that is known to have gone searching for his fair share of lost salt shakers in the past.

The folks at Margartiaville Eyewear sent me a pair of Tortola polarized sunglasses.  When I cracked open the package, there was a pair of sunglasses (duh), presented with a very nice case, a tan nylon with sort of an antiqued brass hardware.  Accompanying the case was a little pull-string microfiber glasses bag that doubles as a lens cleaner, as well as a glasses leash made from like a shoelace type material (as opposed to neoprene).  Top rate packaging, and they almost too good of a first impression.  I don't know where they were gonna go from here.


Two Nights In Vegas With Tenkara Talk

Tenkara Talk and I had a fun time in even let me take some know to enter that contest...

I'd show more pictures, but to be honest, it's better that Jason not see them...  See Tenkara Talk got a little out of control.  
The first misstep was when it insisted on buying one of those foot long frozen margaritas...then it started acting belligerent to a group of baitcasters.  Called them a bunch of "word for cats."  Luckily they laughed it off.  
After stumbling around it somehow picked up a Ross Reel from a bachelorette party and tried to take it back to the room.  Hated to do it, but I had to step in as a c#ckblock, I wasn't sleeping on the floor...we almost came to blows over the whole situation.  It was an ugly scene, but I guess that's Vegas.
If all goes well, we're headed home today.  Hopefully Tenkara Talk's new piercings get through airport security...

Damn Las Vegas Card Flickers...

...if you've ever been to Vegas, you know what I'm talking about...

Tenkara Tuesday - What Happens In Vegas...

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday.

Tenkara Tuesday alum Jason Klass of Tenkara Talk fame recently posted a free sticker offer in conjunction with a tenkara gear giveaway he was holding to promote his blog.  Unfortunately, as I once learned the hard way, whenever you promote something as "free," even something as small as a sticker, the crazies come out of the woodwork and ruin the fun for everyone.

Luckily, I was one of the fortunate folks that got a Tenkara Talk sticker before the freakshow started.

This week, my work is putting me on a plane again.  Instead of South, now we're talkin' West.  Las Vegas, Nevada to be exact.  While it will be 3 days full of drinking convention and trade show activities (no, I won't be here...and I'll miss this one by a week...), I thought it might be fun to bring the Tenkara Talk sticker with me so I can craft my entry into Jason's contestin some of my down time.

Where will Tenkara Talk show up?  You'll have to wait and see...

Spin Fishing Valley Creek with Troutnspoons

I had the pleasure of fishing with Spurky (aka troutnspoons)this past Saturday.  When not posting pictures of bikini clad fishing women to my Facebook wall, he had been persistently texting & facebooking me about fishing Valley Creek again, and last week he basically told me, "Valley on Saturday.  Be there at 7 AM.  What exit do I take again?"  I guess he was telling, not asking, so I didn't have a choice...not that I'd say no anyway...

Meeting in one of the larger parking lots we geared up and headed down to the stream, walking in a bit before starting to fish at around 7:20 AM.  And let me tell was freezing.  Literally.  You know, frozen guides type of fishing.  We both started the morning fishing spinning tackle and managed a couple follows and "love taps" from the resident trout, but no hookups.  In addition to the cold, the water was on the low side and very clear.  I always like Valley a little high and dirty (just like my wome....ah, for…

Lost & Found

To the character that left $30 of Flourocarbon tippet on a rock at Valley Creek recently...


Seriously, I could return these to your possession if needed.  It'd be good karma, and I believe in that kind of stuff.  Just remember, lying to me would be bad karma back onto you.  No reversies.  Don't f#ck with karma.

L.L. Bean Will Make Me Misbehave

I told myself this year would be different.  I told myself there are better ways to spend my money.  I told myself there was no reason to get another rod this year, let alone another 3-weight.  Now I'm thinking (much like Lilly at dinner time) that I'm not going to be a very good listener.

I got my copy of the L.L. Bean Fly Fishing catalog last night and am absolutely smitten with the new Pocket Water fly rod.  See, I'm a sucker for a pretty face, and this rod is a looker (magazine centerfolds usually are, right?)
You'll immediately notice that it's got a paint job that looks somewhat like bamboo.  Appears to be very similar to the finish on my Sakura Betuatsurae Kongo tenkara rod, a rod that looks good in pictures but is stunning up close.

Additionally, from what I understand, the rod has some steak to go with that sizzle as well.  It got some relatively good press following last year's IFTD show, and I really look forward to getting out to a store to at least…

The First Miss of 2012

Each of the last two years, Mother Nature has been generous enough to provide wonderful weather to serve as the backdrop for New Year's Day fishing.  2010's outing featured multi-tasking via spinning tackle & Tenkara USA rod on some brookies on Stony Creek, and in 2011, the Fountainhead Caddis found itself catching some Valley Creek browns.

Surprisingly, the weather was even nicer for New Year's Day 2012; a mild 55 degrees, sunny blue skies, puffy white clouds, absolutely gorgeous...

Being a little fatigued from a 16 hour drive from Orlando, Florida back to Pennsylvania the entire day before, I wasn't really in the mood to spring out of bed and hit the water right away.  Instead, I kind of lounged around the house a while, hung out with Lilly, and did much of nothing most of the morning.  However before I knew it, it was 2:30 in the afternoon gets dark around here early these days!
Tossing on a hoodie and darting out the door, I hustled down to Vall…

Tenkara Tuesday - Tenkara Summit 2012

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday.

Yeah, it's back.  Didn't think I'd let it totally die on the vine did you?

So I decided last night that I'm going to make one of my trips (as stated in the resolution posts) the 2012 Tenkara Summit in Utah.  I just like the idea of that, making a statement rather than throwing out a goal.  Makes it more definitive.  Anyway, July 28 & 29, I'm there, eager to drink in all the blonde hair, blue eyed, lime Jell-O eating glory that is Salt Lake City.

The good news is, I actually think I can do this without breaking the bank.  In pricing flights to SLC last night, I discovered that they are relatively cheap, so as far as I'm concerned, it's a done deal once all of the details are worked out.

With a rod that collapses down (and of course no reel) at least I won't have to pack too much gear.  Rod, line, flies, wading boots in a bag, right?  But then again, maybe a the 5-weight may come with, you know, just in case a side trip sh…