A Tenkara Shortcoming
I went float tubing on a large artificial lake yesterday with a couple of friends. They fished Western style, with John using an Intermediate sinking line and Ron using a 3 inches per/second sinking line. I started out with a TUSA 10.5 foot Kevlar line and a small Bead Head Orange Wooly Bugger, which produced no action at all for me while they were getting hits and infrequent fish on similar orange colored fly patterns.
Shortly, the wind came up. And I put on a floating T-line and an ant pattern and proceeded to the windward side of the lake, which was devoid of anglers when I started. But which became filled with anglers from the adjacent campground by the time I got there. I managed to catch and release one nice rainbow trout there, and get a few more hits I didn't succeed on along the face of the dam where my two friends were doing much better than I was.
I had never fished a level FC line for trout before in a lake. And although I had gone back to fishing a weighted subsurface fly pattern again, it just wasn't getting deep enough on a floating line to get into the strike zone. So I put on a 13.5 foot long TUSA (green) size 4.5 line, to which I added the tippet with the Orange Bead Head W.B. on it, and then added another 3 feet of tippet as a trailer with an Orange Sheeps Creek fly pattern on the end of it, and I started getting hits but still failed in landing any fish. The hits all felt like little fish, with no solid takes.
Ron ended up filling his 5 fish limit, while John was able to keep 3. This is a put and take fishery and they wanted some fish to eat. John lost a lot of fish and he probably hooked more fish than Ron did. And Ron also lost a lot of the fish he was hooking, while I had almost no action in comparison. The wind blown terrestrial fall I was counting on for success failed to materialize and I went nearly fish-less. What I needed was a deeper running faster sinking T-line to float tube troll flies in this lake in order to catch fish. So I am going to eventually get a Titanium line and see if it will improve my chances in these kinds of fishing situations. I just hope that the Titanium line is Knot-2-Kinky....Golden.
The Knot2Kinky line http://www.tenkarabum.com/titanium-line.html does live up to it's name if you are at all careful about it. I have not had any problems with kinking. The only problem I have had is that the line really wants to be straight. It does not like being coiled on of the small tenkara line holders. If you use one or anything similar, you may need a rubber band to keep the line on the holder. Given it's greater density than fluorocarbon, the titanium line should help you get your flies deeper. Understand that with deeper flies you'll need a rod with a stiffer tip to get good hooksets.
Chris, the Knot2Kinky comment was meant to be tong in cheek attempt at injecting some humor. I am coiling my lines around my 4 fingers and putting them in a RIO Leader Wallet Insert for storage, so the line coil will be a lot bigger in diameter than it would be on a line spool/line holder. Hopefully the Diawa 43 MF has a stiff enough tip as that is the rod I will use for this. Since this involves trolling the line is tight to the rod and takes are felt, and the rod's backbone comes into play pretty quickly if not immediately. I am thinking of using heat-shrink tubing (which I already have) to cover the knots, but I will have to wait and see how that works out. I believe you sell the Knot2Kinky line in a 30 foot length, I was thinking of making up a 10 foot line for more normal applications and using the other 20 feet as a trolling line. How easily will it coil into a shallow stripping basket of about 24 X 18 inches? Thank you....Golden.
Have not used a stripping basket so I don't know. I suspect it might not want to stay in the basket.
I'm not sure I see what the "tenkara shortcoming" is here.
I am currently doing a lot of Tenkara/fixed-line fishing from a float tube out of necessity - much of our water in western WA consists of small lakes or specific areas of larger lakes. Not an abundance of resident trout streams here, mostly anadromous fish in big rivers. Certainly standard lake FF techniques can be adapted to fixed-line gear. For example, stationary subsurface angling in stillwater can be accomplished using a small indicator and long, light leader (20 plus ft.). A chironomid presentation originating in the NW 35 years ago. Just make sure the indicator is very light (yarn rather than corkie) and attached far enough from the lillian - casting can be a bit awkward and scary especially with delicate (0.65 mm or less) tips. Trolling or mooching a fly might be a shortcoming but I have an idea. Since casting is not required, why not add a 10' fast sinking leader to your T line, then two feet of tippet and a weighted fly. One of the more stout rods like a Daiwa Kiyose (0.7 mm tip) that Chris sells would be a great benefit as strikes to faster moving flies can be quite powerful. I have pretty much hung-up or sold the bulk of my western ff gear in favor of fixed-line rods. After 40 years in the game, Tenkara has been a refreshing experience since receiving my first real T rod in 2009. It may not be traditional Tenkara, however the application of learned western rigging just expands opportunities to use the Kieryu, Seiryu and T gear I now prefer. So I'm gonna try the sinking leader/mooching set-up. Let me know if it or something similar works for you.
Last edited by Danny; 06-23-2013 at 08:39 PM.