January 31, 2017

Tenkara Tuesday - Tenkara In Focus Episode 4

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday...

You're probably aware by now, but just in case you're not, the latest episode of Tenkara In Focus has just been released! I've only skimmed it so far (going to settle in tonight with the old Chromecast and the big screen) but looks like there's plenty to see...

I'm looking forward to taking in all the sights and sounds, the guys at Discover Tenkara always do a phenomenal job with these videos!

January 30, 2017

For Sale: New T-Shirt, Old T-Shirt, Random Gear...

Time to make like a carnival barker because the deals in the T! Store have never been hotter!
Just wanted to bring a few additions to your attention today...let's make a deal!

First off, Tenkara Angler swag was added to the store over the weekend in the form of tees and stickers. I had several people ask about Tenkara Angler t-shirts & hats at the Tenkara Jam, so we decided to move forward with a new, limited run "Tamo T-Shirt" in collaboration with the guys at Six Waters Co. They did a great job on the design, don't you think?

The super-soft tee comes in every color of the rainbow, given your rainbow is monochromatic heather blue. The first print run was limited, but at the time of posting, all sizes were still available, and I'll toss in some free TA stickers as well. The tees fit relatively true to size, my XL fits fine (I'm 6', about 210).

So in with the new...and out with the old...

The ever popular Troutrageous! Tenkara Sasquatch tees are now on clearance. I have a few random quantities leftover in sizes Large and XXL only. Originally $20, if you're Cinderella and shoe fits, you can have a tee for the steal of a price at $10.  I mean they're "CARF Approved" so that's gotta mean something, right?

Finally, I've been going through my gear, and just found a bunch of stuff that's in great condition, but I just don't use much anymore. Rather than go immediately to eBay, I've posted those items at the bottom of the T! store under the section, "Garage Sale" Maybe there's something that interests you, maybe not. Either way, some good deals to be had on gently used fishing gear.

Check out the T! Store HERE

So that's that on this final Monday morning of January.
Hope you're all ready for an awesome week.

January 29, 2017

The New Tenkara-Fisher

In a prior post about the 10 Colors Tenkara forum, it was mentioned that the new site was the heir apparent (in terms of forums) to the Tenkara-Fisher forum, which was compromised by hackers and recently shuttered.

Well, I'm happy to also note that most of the standalone content that was featured on the old Tenkara-Fisher forum has been migrated to a standalone blog by the same name found HERE.

For those of you familiar with the old T-F forum and the writing of Adam Trahan, the new site will feel very familiar. For those that aren't, or simply hadn't visited the old Tenkara-Fisher in quite some time, it's definitely worth a visit. There's a tremendous amount of content & insight that can be found, particularly in the interviews with about two dozen tenkara contemporaries, both from the U.S. and abroad.

One of the more recent posts was a great re-discovery; a look inside the development of a wooden fly box entitled, "My Kebari Box." A gorgeous photo of the final product below, but you really need to read the full post found HERE.

Photo: Adam Trahan | Tenkara-Fisher 


January 28, 2017

Realtree Fishing

There are a lot of fishing lifestyle brands out there making hats, tees, and all kinds of stuff for anglers to display their love of the water. Not to be outdone, I received this press release from Realtree the other day, highlighting their new fishing branding and upcoming product lines.

I'll just repost the whole thing for you below. They're not compensating me for this, I just kind of find these branding plays interesting, figured you may too. Not sure if I'm personally the Realtree Fishing customer, although I do kind of think the way they changed their familiar antlers logo into fishing hooks was pretty well executed...

Realtree Launches New Fishing Lifestyle Brand

Columbus, Ga., Jan. 24, 2017 -- While the early success of Realtree was rooted in the hunting industry, three decades later the company's influence now reaches into virtually every corner of the sporting world. It is the preferred brand of sportsmen, sportswomen and every person who loves the outdoor lifestyle.

It just makes sense then that anglers would have an affinity for the lifestyle represented by America's No. 1 camo pattern. Already, dozens of Realtree's more than 2,000 licensing and retail partners manufacture or market primarily to outdoor enthusiasts who rank fishing at or near the top of their preferred sporting ventures.

Having built this fantastic brand recognition that crosses so many active lifestyles, it's time to make it official: Introducing the newest brand in the Realtree family: REALTREE FISHING!

"It's not a stretch to understand that the same sportsmen and women who trade their bows and guns for fishing rods during the summer months are drawn to the Realtree brand," said Brad Schorr, SVP, Licensing & Retail of Realtree. "But Realtree Fishing gives them an additional connection to the iconic brand they know and respect."

Marketing efforts behind the Realtree Fishing logo are ramping up to impact the marketplace in a big way next year, turning heads on clothing, swimwear, and fishing products and accessories. This is an excellent opportunity to introduce new product lines or expand new ones with a marketing slant that captures the attention of year-round sportsmen and women.

January 17, 2017

Tenkara Tuesday - 3 Quick Hits

Three quick hits on this Tenkara Tuesday...

New TenkaraBum Rods
Have been a little bit slow on this one, but TenkaraBum recently released two new Suntech produced rods to his namesake line.  The TenkaraBum 40 and the TenkaraBum 33.  These two models complement the original TenkaraBum 36 at longer and shorter extended lengths respectively.

Tenkara Angler Magazine
The open call for submissions was made yesterday for the Spring 2017 issue of Tenkara Angler magazine. Content is community-sourced; if you're interested in contributing, more details on how to submit an article, photo, essay, etc... can be found HERE.

Tenkara Cast Podcast
A new Tenkara Cast was released last week and it was a good listen. I'd recommend taking the opportunity to tune in as Daniel teases a few initiatives for 2017 - a new rod, the return of the Tenkara Summit, and a book tour!

Enjoy!  Now let's go fishing!

January 16, 2017

#NBAVote Joel Embiid

Warning: Non Fishing Post

I'm a Sixers fan.

Have been my whole life. If you asked me deep down which of the four Philadelphia teams I would want to see win a championship first, my answer would be the 76ers. They last time they won I was 6 and I knew nothing about basketball whatsoever. Since then, I've been teased by contending teams led by Charles Barkley and Allen Iverson, but by and large, it's been a whole lot of losing.

Having little resources and the "longest view in the room," they chose to intentionally lose games the last 3 years to return high draft picks, hoping at least one would result in a transcendent player. As a fan, I was in favor of this strategy by the way, I'm a "Process Truster." 

Yes, Hinkie died for our sins, and the Colangelos make me ill. Or at least Jerry does, I'm still trying to give Bryan the benefit of the doubt.

It's been a long road, but it finally looks like my favorite team has a pulse. Those years of waiting have provided Joel Embiid, who in tandem with the emergence of some other young talent and above average defensive intensity, have elevated the Sixers from being the laughing stock of the league to just being kind of bad. In recent weeks, not only have they become adept at beating other bad teams, but they're starting to give middle of the pack teams fits as well. 

And we haven't even seen 2016's #1 Draft Pick, Ben Simmons play yet.
But he's coming. Soon.

Yeah, I'm psyched.

All of that noted, today (Monday) happens to be the last day of fan voting for the 2016-17 NBA All-Star game. Sixers center, Joel Embiid is in contention for one of the fan spots. Go vote for him at NBA.com, or simply use your Twitter account to tweet the following: #NBAVote Joel Embiid.

Haven't seen Joel play, no problem, GIFs below...

January 15, 2017

10 Colors Tenkara Forum

Internet forums, love them or hate them, they're out there, and if you're interested in diving deep into a specific topic, they can be gold mines of really good information... once you side-step the trolls.

One of the oldest, and most popular tenkara forums, Tenkara-Fisher, announced that it will be shutting down at the end of January due to persistent pressures of computer hackers, and is in the process of moving its best content to a more traditional blog format that will be found HERE

(Tom Davis also wrote an article about the topic last week)

In the wake of that news, several of the participants of the Tenkara-Fisher forum have since taken up new residence at the 10 Colors Tenkara forum.

For those of you that are used to participating in older, more established online forums, the 10 Colors Tenkara forum won't really look all that familiar. See what I mean?

It's run on the open-source Discourse platform, which takes a little bit to get used to and to figure out where all of the customary functions live and work... but the learning curve is quick, and once you do, it's great. Fortunately, memorizing forum code to embed things like videos or photos is a thing of the past.

Some added benefits... it not only looks great on desktop, but just as good on mobile, without having to download an additional app, (although Discourse does offer one). You can also use your Google, Facebook, or Twitter accounts to log-in.

If that doesn't do it for you, you can still follow along from time to time. Posts on the 10 Colors Tenkara forum have been integrated into a Twitter feed, which is easily followed, HERE

I don't consider myself much of a "forum guy," especially since Facebook groups seem to be the same thing and that's where most people are. However, I do take interest in new technology, so I've definitely been having fun playing around inside the 10 Colors Tenkara forum the past few days. 

Maybe I'll see you over there, it certainly would be nice to have a few more familiar faces stop by.

January 10, 2017

Tenkara Tuesday - The Golden Globe Awards

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday...

The Golden Globe Awards were on the other night. I didn't watch them, (c'mon now, Finding Bigfoot was on TV), but lots of people seem to be talking about them. La La Land evidently won all of the big movie awards which is good for them. I'm certain it's no Rogue One, but as far as feature films go, I'm sure it's great.

Now you or I could go to the theaters and buy tickets for La La Land...or just watch the rad videos I've embedded below. They aren't new. If you're one of my regular Tenkara Tuesday readers, you've probably viewed them before. Some, possibly several times. That said, even today, they're still just as effective in getting my tenkara juices going as when they were first released back in 2009. Congrats Daniel Galhardo & Tenkara USA, you've won the Troutrageous! "Lifetime Achievement Award for Best Foreign Fishing-Style Film."

I can't go fishing today, so I'm going to watch them all again too. Please join me.

January 8, 2017

A Man Of Many Vises

Vises...instead of vices...on a fly fishing blog...HA!

Stupid jokes aside, I scored a new Peak Rotary Vise the other day cashing in some holiday gift cards, and I have to say I'm really pleased with it. I've sort of settled into a fishing sweet spot where I don't really need to acquire specific items anymore, rather I've been "upgrading" items that I tend to use frequently to ensure their usefulness lasts for the long haul.

I've been using a Danica Danvise for the past few years, and while it probably has at least a few more years of use in it, the entire body is made of nylon and I found the rotary mechanism to develop a slight wobble over time. Also, the dimensions of the vertical shaft aren't standard, making it incompatible with most bases & accessories, so while it's been a workhorse, it wasn't an ideal long-term solution.

Danica Patrick, not a Danica Danvise

After unpacking, assembling, and playing around with the Peak for an afternoon, I have to say I'm very impressed, albeit in a very small sample size. It's rock solid, the jaws do what they're supposed to, and the rotary feature is smooth. No wobble in this vise. The materials and construction are such that I don't think I'll have to worry about exercising the lifetime guarantee for repair or replacement.

The only thing I'm not sure I care for about it are the nylon screws, particularly the one that manages the tension on the rotary mechanism. Just seemed odd (aesthetically) that the vise comes out of the box with two plastic screws when everything else about the vise is all metal and basically bullet-proof. However, I've read that you can buy replacement brass screws if you want, so hey Peak, why not just provide the brass screws to begin with? Whatever.

Rather than retiring the Danvise, it will become my travel vise. Or actually, it will come to work with me alongside a pencil box full of materials so I can tie during my lunch break. It's perfect for travel because it's extremely lightweight and very capable. I definitely got more than my money's worth out of it over the years and would highly recommend to anyone looking for an inexpensive full rotary vise that can handle various hook sizes, from tiny midges up to serious streamers.

Danica Danvise, not a Danica Patrick

As for my old backup vise, the inexpensive clamp model that comes with those pre-fab beginner fly tying kits? I think I need to donate/gift it to someone. It works fine, I just don't need 3 vises. Anybody want it, just let me know...I'm certain we could work something out.

So what to you tie on?  Regal, Renzetti, HMH, Norvise? Or maybe a Peak, Danvise, or no-name like I've been using? I don't think there's a bad choice out there, would love to hear what's on your bench.

January 6, 2017

The Photarium

I swear I've written about these before...but I searched the blog and I guess I never did. Maybe it was on Facebook or perhaps even a fishing forum, who knows.

Anyway, I've been somewhat intrigued by the concept of these photography tanks (Photariums) for quite some time, probably as long as I've been fishing.

Photo: Wild Fish Conservancy

The benefits are pretty clear. The fish stays in the water allowing you time to observe, measure, and get some pretty good photos of it. I kind of geek out at stuff like that. Would imagine it makes the "Keep 'em Wet" crowd happy too.

In addition to the retail versions available through the Wild Fish Conservancy, there are plenty of homemade versions floating around on blogs and forums if you look hard enough. Heck, one doesn't even have to look that hard, Photariums have even made the rounds on prominent websites from time to time, I've just personally never taken the plunge.

I guess it comes down to price and necessity. You know, the whole, "do I really need it, do I want to spend that much on it, and am I really going to use it?" Even the smallest one from the WFC store runs about $60. Eh, at least I tend to catch small trout.

Nevertheless, I still think they're pretty cool. Maybe I'll finally break down this year.

Or maybe not.

So what do you think about toting around a plexiglass rectangle when you go fishing?

January 5, 2017

TBT! 2009: Box of Tricks!

In today's Throwback Troutrageous! (TBT!) post we go back in time to January 2009. Before I became a snobby fly angler, I was all about spin-fishing and accumulating any type of inline spinner I could find. Mepps, Panther Martin, even tiny brands you've probably never heard of. I opened up one of my Plano boxes to show what sort of hardware I was chucking.

Coincidentally, this might be the first time that Len Harris (aka "Spinner") was ever mentioned on this blog. His presence in internet fishing forums used to be legendary, (I don't frequent many forums anymore, so not sure if he's still active telling his stories or posting his "where would you cast" photos). Today, you'll most likely find him on his fantastic The Stream of Time blog.

Anyway, check out all this METAL - and if you have a favorite inline spinner, I'd love to know what it is. They're nothing but effective. I was partial to the Wyld Edge Bezerkers, but I don't even think the company that made them is in business anymore...

JANUARY 07, 2009

I was on the PAanglers forum the other day and read a thread (started by "Spinner") that showed what kind of lures he kept in his tackle box. There was a little bit of dialogue following, with some other folks chiming in on their favorites, so I thought it might be fun to show what is in my tackle box 9 times out of 10 when I go out for trout.

First off, I really like these double sided Plano Stowaway tackle boxes. I use model #3449. They are small, compact, and perfect to toss in a fishing vest or jacket pocket. They hold a lot too. which makes them very convenient if you like to bring a large arsenal on the water (like me). I'm all about swapping lures if a particular color or configuration isn't working, so the more the merrier for me.

Side one: Joe's Flies, Rooster Tails, Wyld Edge Bezerkers (my favorites!), Mepps Elix (now discontinued), Fish Creek Nitro Mites, and a small and indispensable Leatherman Squirt tool (with pliers). I usually also cram in some Tin Split Shot & Assorted Hooks in case I want to fish with a bait (usually waxworms) instead of lures.

Side two: Mepps Little Wolf Spoon, Wyld Edge Baby Bezerkers, Fish Creek Armadillos (a great change-up!), & Homemade spinners in assorted varieties. The lures I make myself vary from very standard to resemble Panther Martins or Mepps XDs, to what I call my Michelin Man (a lure that closely resembles a CP Swing), to random contraptions of leftover brass bodies and beads. All of them tend to catch fish rather well - and I tend to stay in the gold & silver family as far as colors go.

January 4, 2017

2017: It's Gonna Be HUGE!

2017 is going to be a BIG year for the blog. One might even say HUGE. How can it not be? I even snuck out on New Year's day and caught this beast as my first fish of 2017!

I mean it is par for the course with the rest of the dink fish pics posted to this blog over the years, so that's certainly not what's going to make 2017 special...

What is?  I enjoy numbers, so let's review three of them.


I turn 40 years old in June. Cue the music... Hap-py birth-day to me.... The average US male lives to be 78.8 years old, so I'm officially middle aged and closer to death than birth. Yes!


I will have been writing this blog for 25% of my life.

Yes, for a quarter of my life I've been the author of a poorly written blog about some guy who really doesn't fish that much (or that successfully). And get this...a handful people actually still come and read it...

So what does all this mean?
Well, you don't have to be a mathematician to figure out the last number...


It means this blog turns 10 in June! Seems like most blogs only last 10 days, not 10 years, especially those that churn out questionable content like one might find here.

Anyway, a lot has happened in 10 years on the blog.

If you've been around for any length of time, you'd have witnessed the rise of the Owl Jones bromance, blog love given out by the handful, horrible pop-culture references, Wednesday Nibbles, too much of Valley Creek, bad photoshops, my kid grow from 1 to almost 11 years of age, the T! Party, Sacred Cows, oh, and then the ridiculous Japanese fishing obsession hobby. (Did you know the first posts on this blog were about spin-fishing and bending wire & bottle caps to make lures? About as American as it gets, what the heck happened?)

So in 2017 I plan on digging out and re-publishing some of my favorite posts of the past 10 years and taking a walk or two down memory lane. It's extremely egotistical and self-serving, but you might enjoy it too. Maybe. Okay, probably not. But stay tuned. If nothing else, it'll be a simple remedy for writer's block.

I guess this is the time in the post where I'm supposed to say that I also hope to create some new memories too; you know the ol', "ten more years!" But once you hit middle age, well, there are no guarantees. Plus, I always did my best writing late at night, and I'm much too fond of bed these days...