June 17, 2014

Tenkara Tuesday - Vagabox Does Florida

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday...

Vagabox arrived yesterday.  I had (somewhat intentionally) steered clear of this character of ill repute for quite some time, however I'm sort of freaked out happy to report that he's going to be residing just south of Jacksonville until the end of June.

Don't know of the Vagabox?  No, it's not THIS.  Allow me to explain.

The Backstory

Since May of 2012 a fly box without a home has been roaming the country from tenkara angler to tenkara angler.  In addition to their hospitality, each recipient commits to fishing the flies contained within without reservation, chronicling their time with this unseemly interloper, and feeding him a few flies of their own recipe until ready to pass along to the next foster family.

The Flies

As you can see, Vagabox has seen some good times.  Especially out West.  In his current state, two years since he chose the transient lifestyle, he's acquired lots of flies of all shapes, sorts, and sizes.

He's honestly in quite the state of disrepair.  He's taped together at the hinges, as it appears somewhere along the way he literally took to crack...and his foam is all warped due to melted glue.  He could probably use a bath and a tetanus shot too.

The Log Book

The best part about Vagabox (in my opinion)  probably isn't the fly box itself, but the small journal that accompanies him like a hobo's satchel.  Crammed full of handwritten stories, notes, diagrams, and photos, you have the opportunity to follow Vagabox's journey across the country, before adding to it yourself.  I started reading a few pages and once I figured out how to decipher some of the handwriting, I found it's really great stuff.  Plus if you're "into" consuming online tenkara info, you'll instantly recognize the names of the people that have played the role of host in the past.


Want In?  (I Know You Do)

Much like any great idea, many people eagerly signed up to take in Vagabox in the beginning.  The waiting list was long and he traveled often.  Two years later...he's unfortunately almost forgotten.

Perhaps it's because Vagabox is rude and disheveled and has a tendency to speak in Spanish.  Could be his alcohol problem and STDs.  Honestly, I can't pinpoint it.  There is a person that is in line after me to assume responsibility of Vagabox come July, but beyond that...seems like fair game for those brave enough to offer their services.

So if you're an interested tenkara angler, check out THIS THREAD over in the Tenkara USA forum and sign up to take him in during the back half of 2014.  There are many places Vagabox hasn't seen yet.  Your stream, creek, river, pond, or lake is probably one of them.



My time with the Vagabox was brief but eventful. We fished, we argued, we made up. What a fling. A summary and photos of our brief affair can be found HERE, HERE, and HERE


Are you a tenkara angler? Do you have a story, pictures, video, fly recipe, or simply a fishing report from one of your recent tenkara adventures? If so, I'd really enjoy hearing from you for an upcoming Tenkara Tuesday post! Feel free to send an email HERE, I'd love to publish your original contribution.


  1. Just posted to the site. I really want to get in on this!

  2. That is a great idea. I'm surprised that many flies are still in there. Shows fly fisherman are pretty trust worthy or they are taking the good flies and replacing them with the ones that never work. =)

    1. It's an interesting assortment to say the least. Not a lot of what I'd consider stereotypical "tenkara" flies...but lots to get wet.

  3. I might have to get into tenkara just to participate in the vagabox...

  4. I've wanted to sign up for awhile. Hope to show Vagabox a good time.

  5. Thanks for reminding me of the Vagabox! How could I forget??
    That is such a fun experiment. I stopped tracking it, but for a while was creating this live map, "Tales of the Vagabox": https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=z7kUKTEufQg8.khngbSEFaBR0
    Will try to get it here for the Tenkara Summit, and will see if I can update his travels in the map soon.

  6. I see the first person to try and join in the fun got a pretty good smack down - even after you explained the reason for his sudden appearance. Gotta love all that snooty-paloooty over there. geez.

    1. Well to be fair, it was like a creamy peanut butter fan traveling to a chunky peanut butter convention, announcing chunky isn't their thing, but wanting to stick their finger in the jar of chunky anyway. I really don't care, fly fishing's fly fishing. Good thing is they were added to the list...I hope he does get it...especially if other's within the "inner circle" don't ask for it. Would be a shame for the box to stop traveling, tenkara or not.

  7. Nice blog TR1, I'm looking forward to having it in July after you, I've got a couple special places I plan on taking it. Thanks for the glimpse inside the journal, I can't wait to read it and add some of my ramblings to it.