September 27, 2015

Kype Fishing Magazine: Volume 6 / Issue 2 Fall 2015

The Fall 2015 issue of Kype Magazine is out.


I've been a big supporter of the magazine for a few years but am really enjoying the direction of the content since Aileen Lane took over the publishing reigns last year.

Some highlights of this issue include Fly Fishing the Flats (page 6), Fly Farming (page 24) and Small Streams & Tenkara (page 42).  Check it all out either HERE or via the embed above.


September 24, 2015

Video - Fly Fishing Father & Son Stormtroopers

This is rather excellent from Tight Lines Fly Fishing Company...
Stick with it, it gets better as it goes...


I mean who doesn't need a Jawa to assist with fly selection?

September 23, 2015

Tenkara Tuesday - Ultralight Floating Tenkara Line

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday (on Wednesday)...

Ever since I moved to Florida, I've been seeking ways to fine tune my tenkara tackle to the abundant still-water opportunities that present themselves seemingly everywhere. While many of the same tenkara rods, lines, and flies can be used with great success, I've found that adding a good floating tenkara fly line to the arsenal has been an excellent enhancement to my gear cache. Heck, I even wrote a Tenkara Tuesday post about it back in May.

When I was approached to test out a new floating tenkara line offering from Three Rivers Tenkara, I figured the product would be very similar to some of the other lines I was using...but upon further examination, I couldn't be more wrong.

R.I.P. Llanolope popper

It became very clear while attaching the line to my rod was that it was truly "ultralight" and that wasn't just a buzzword used to sell lines. Since floating lines are made from some sort of plastic, they tend to have a little bit of bulk to them, and the models I've used in the past purposed toward tenkara rods are no different. The thing that jumped out at me was that this line feels and handles more like a light furled line, and simply does not overpower the slender tip section of the tenkara rod.

The line attaches to the rod's lillian similar to other floating or furled lines with a girth hitch. Easy on, easy off, without needing to know how to tie knots. The tippet then attaches to a tippet ring at located at the end of a short length of high vis mono. (This change was made later, my sample did not include a tippet ring and utilized a figure 8 knot stopper in the mono to serve as a tippet anchor).

Girth hitch

Wanting to really give this line a solid test drive, I hooked it up to 6 different tenkara rods that I own from several different manufacturers and did a little lawn casting to a paper plate about 25ish feet away. Tossing out about 30 or 40 casts from each rod, softer rods seemed to lay out the line a bit better than stiffer rods. Believe it or not, I found the rod that it paired with the best was the Tenkara USA Ebisu.

Taking it to the water, dry flies and kebari cast very well, a simple flick of the wrist was all that was needed to place the fly wherever I wanted, almost on demand. Small foam poppers and hoppers (my favorite flies for Florida bass & bluegill) proved to fish great on this line too, their relative bulk didn't overpower the line at all, and the line consistently floated up top, cast after cast.


I did try sizing up to a size 8 bead head woolly bugger and that was probably pushing this line's upper limits. The cast was more of a lob (the rod plays a part in that too), and some of the heavier floating tenkara lines I've used in the past have turned over weighted flies a bit better that this line.

In the end, this is really a superior product, one that I'd easily recommend to the dry fly tenkara fisherman. Pair it with a rod with a soft tip and some foam poppers or elk hair caddis, and you're going to have a ridiculously easy to cast setup that makes catching any rising fish, be it trout, bluegill, or bass an absolute joy!

---------------------------------------------------

DISCLAIMER:
The Ultralight Floating Tenkara Line featured in this product review was provided to me at no cost, but carries a suggested retail price of $20-26. Although I consider Anthony Naples a friend, I currently hold no official association with Three Rivers Tenkara and did not solicit them for the product to review. It was simply offered to test for feedback during the development process.

REVIEW POLICY:
As with all independent gear reviews at Troutrageous! I try my best to keep my reviews honest and unbiased. If something is good, it deserves applause; if it sucks, I'll comment on the experience, but rather than write an uncomplimentary post, inform the manufacturer my opinion of their offering directly outside of this blog. (For real, you should see some of the stuff I haven't written about...) This policy pertains to items both purchased and provided at no (or reduced) cost.

September 22, 2015

New & Improved Moldy Chum - An Unsolicited Review

I'm going to put Tenkara Tuesday on hold for a day.

I couldn't help but notice yesterday that one of my favorite sites, one of the few sites that has been a constant in fly fishing media for the last decade, Moldy Chum, wasn't so moldy anymore.


With a top to bottom redesign, the crisp, clean, new website is definitely a visual upgrade that's easy on the eyes.

The latest version brings over some of the content from the old site, plus has functionality to incorporate additional features like regular giveaways, wallpaper downloads, and better showcase the "Slab of the Month" contest. It's all great stuff, I think they hit a visual home run. Bold images, clean fonts, better social and sharing features, and a better platform to actually write extended posts if they so choose, there's a ton of goodness going on here.

With the good, there's the bad, and in making all of these upgrades, it's hard to ignore that they've made it a little bit more cumbersome to actually consume content. If nothing else, the simple vertical layout of the old site made it very easy to skim several posts very quickly. Now you kind of have to click into each individual entry (unless I'm missing something, and if I am, it's not intuitive). Whatever you think, you can't deny it's not as easy as "scrolling down."

I'm sure that change was in part done to improve stats that advertisers (and possibly Google) view as important, such as page views and bounce rate, but it's a change that's tough to ignore. Especially because Moldy Chum is known for publishing multiple posts in a day.

I'm more than willing to give it a try though, because as a loyal reader who eagerly looks forward to his lunchtime diversion, (and a fellow blogger who has been gun shy to make even a small change to his own blog in fear of blowing things up on a website squarely rooted in 2003 technology), I'm certain the change just needs to grow on me.

Good stuff guys. Congrats on the new site, it looks great!

Have you visited the new Moldy Chum yet?  
What do you think?

September 21, 2015

The Emmys, Eagles, & WWE...with a Touch of Fly Tying...

So did you watch the Emmys last night?
Yeah, neither did I...

Glad to see Seinfeld still winning hardware...

Ended the weekend (whip) finishing up some flies for a Facebook fly swap and lamenting the fact that I wasn't in Colorado.

Perhaps coming to a mailbox near you?

It was a good way to unwind after a long few days of watching roller derby, as well as having my Eagles pretty much suck all of the life out of my interest in the NFL this year. Like, c'mon Chip, really? Really with this Sam Bradford crap?

Dear Mr. Bradford - Upon entry of the red zone, throw it your own team

Jesu...I mean Tim Tebow...would have found a way to win that game...


Oh and to cap it off, greasy haired, red jumpsuit wearing Kane is back? What in the name of Xavier Woods is going on, this can't be what's best for business HHH!


I can handle a Y2J cameo, but don't bring a relic out of mothballs to blindside "The Future"...oh, Rollins was facing an even older Sting in the first place...what year is it again?


You probably didn't follow much of that, did you? Very little fishing content, I know. Even less coherency, whatever. That's what trying to slap together a blog post at 1 AM will do to you...

Tenkara Tuesday tomorrow. Until then...

September 18, 2015

Reader Suggested Content...

As a blogger, it is crucial to read and respond to your readers' comments.

This is for you +Kevin Frank

September 17, 2015

Tenkara, Roller Derby, Swag, & Calendar Grab Bag

Sometimes there's beauty in silence...

That could have been the theme of this blog over the past few weeks. Other than a random post here or there, I gotta be honest, it was just nice to kind of tune most everything internet & social media out for a little bit.

However, it's time to hop back on that horse; I think I'll give a rundown of some things of note, things that may even foreshadow future posts here on the blog...


The 2015 Tenkara Summit

Yep, the Tenkaraverse is descending on Colorado again for a gathering that seems to get bigger and better each and every year. I have to admit that while I'm kinda bummed not to be heading West this year (I've attended the last three), I wish all of my fixed-line friends safe travels and an absolutely awesome time.


While meeting others and putting faces to names is always the highlight, Rocky Mountain National Park is also beautiful this time of year, the bugling elk should be out and about, and I'm sure the fish will be eager to cooperate.



Women's Flat Track Roller Derby Playoffs

The reason I'm not going to the Tenkara Summit is because my wife has become super immersed in her role with the Jacksonville Rollergirls, who's All Star team is one of the top 10 ranked women's flat track roller derby teams in the world!


The Rollergirls happen to be hosting the Division 1 playoff tournament this weekend...and if the team does well against the likes of Denver, London, & Atlanta, well...I might just be following them on to Minnesota in November (brrrrr...) to cheer on their quest for the World Championship!


Mail Call

The postal service has been kind to me in recent weeks. Folks must think as a blogger of a largely dormant blog, that I have some sort of influence or something...ha!

Seriously, first off, a BIG thank you to my friend Howard for passing along the fancy, new WK&TL stickers...they're great! I'll find a nice place to stick 'em...if Lilly doesn't get a hold of them first!


I also received one of the new ultra-light floating tenkara lines to play around with from Anthony at Three Rivers Tenkara. They aren't exactly what I expected (in a very good way), and I'll likely do a write up/review of the line for next week's "Tenkara Tuesday."


Last but not least, a new 5-weight rod and reel showed up somewhat unannounced. The new Pflueger Medalist reel, paired with a Fenwick World Class rod needs to get put through some paces, pronto. I just need to get a line on the reel...and I feel like I've been fishing tenkara so much lately, I'm somewhat out of tune on what to string on there. Any suggestions for a solid 5-weight fly line that won't break the bank, let me know...


Oh, and BB-8.


Tenkara Calendar

I silently launched a new website over the weekend that I hope in time will become a good resource for the tenkara community.  I have to admit, the idea was not mine at all (although I'm not sure that person wants to be named); I just set up the site.

Check out TenkaraCalendar.com for all of the tenkara-themed events I could find online, neatly organized under one central URL.


The events can be expanded to read more information, directly saved to your Google Calendar, shared socially, heck there's even a button that allows you to submit your own tenkara or conservation-based event to the calendar, be it as large as a summit or as small as a meetup on a local creek. All events are welcomed!

I'd love any feedback on how to improve the site, it's rather basic in appearance right now, but I'm open to constructive criticism.


I guess I've written enough, that'll probably do for now. Need to leave a few things unsaid in the interest of future posts...

September 6, 2015

Johnny Cash - German Fish Feared Him

Currently on a little getaway in Nashville. Not planning on posting a bunch of vacation pictures, however while in the Johnny Cash Museum yesterday, this little bit of history jumped out at me...

Johnny-Cash-Museum-gold-platinum-records

No, not all of those gold & platinum records, rather Johnny's fishing license, from his military service in 1950s Germany.

johnny-cash-museum-fishing-license

Oh, and that's one big stringer of fish too...

johnny-cash-stringer-of-fish

I sure bet "The Man in Black" was fun to have as company at a fish fry...

September 4, 2015

Force Friday: A Waste of $150?

A lot of people said tenkara rods were a waste of money a few years back... $150 for a cane pole... There are still quite a few holdouts, but many have come around. I've certainly had a lot of fun with them for the past 6 years and feel like I have gotten more than my money's worth.


$150 for this on the other hand...


Umm...take my money now?
Actually, I'm not sure I'm sold...but it's really freakin' cool.

Happy "Force Friday" & Labor Day weekend.
Regularly scheduled fishing content will return next week.