Tenkara is a very simple Japanese form of fly fishing that only uses a rod, line, and fly. There’s no expensive reel to buy, and since your line length is very limited compared to standard fly fishing you save money there. It looks like fun so I decided to try it. First thing of course is to go online and find a Tenkara fishing rod. Type “tenkara fishing rod” into Google and the first three hits will probably be tenkarausa.com, tenkararodco.com, and a Tenkara fishing pole review on gearpatrol.com. All three sites have good info and it does look like a lot of fun until you see the prices. $90 for an “entry level” Tenkara fishing pole, which is basically a glorified stick??? ANd $90 is just the starting point. They go up – way up – to well over $200. There has to be a cheaper way, and there is. I’m glad, because if I spent $100 or more on a fancy stick I’d probably end up divorced.
I went to Amazon, searched for “tenkara rod,” and found this nice little 13 Ft, 8 Section Carbon Fiber Telescopic Fishing Rod for only $11.49, shipping included. So of course I ordered one. Not free, but compared to $90-200 (or more) I’m calling it almost free. It’s light (about 6 oz) and collapses to about 2 feet long. It’s not as fancy as the expensive rods (no cork handle) but for the price I can live with that. I can’t wait to try it when the weather gets nice. If you want to try Tenkara fishing but cringe at the thought of spending hundreds of dollars on what is basically a fancy stick, it’s worth taking a look at.
More Info on Tenkara: