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Back Casting Over The Willows - Tenkara Advantages

Back Casting Over The Willows - Tenkara Advantages

One of my favorite things about using tenkara gear when fishing creeks surrounded by willows is I don't really have to worry about my back cast. 

As you can see in the video above, I am backed into these willows that are 8 to 10ft tall behind me. Getting into this position allowed my to stay more hidden to the fish and get into the position I wanted to be in to get the right presentation angle to catch more fish. 

The reason I don't have to worry about these willows in my back cast is because of following 3 dynamics of tenkara fishing gear: 

  1. The rods are long, commonly 12 feet long give or take a few feet, which keeps the line higher on the back cast.
  2. The line is short, commonly the same length of the rod give or take a few feet. This gives me more control of the line and also the line does not drop down as much as a fly line would on the back cast. 
  3. Most important of all, tenkara gear gives me a 30 to 45 degree casting plane instead of a flat horizontal casting plane that most fly rods cast at. So when my line goes into the back cast at a 30 to 45 degree up angle it easily clears these willows. 

I find my self not even thinking about my back cast when fishing these fun willow creeks. I love that I can focus on the fishing, choosing angles, reading the water, picking the currents and pockets, and all the other things that I enjoy about fishing rather than thinking about what I might snag in my back cast. 

If you are new to tenkara, you might need some practice on your casting to make sure you are getting the right motion to get this 30 to 45 degree back cast and that your line is not dropping down too much before your forward cast. But once you get this casting motion down, life is easier on these willow creeks. Here is a great video from Japan that shows the basics to get your casting right >>


In the video above I was fishing the 12ft Shadowfire 365 tenkara rod from a side creek angle. I was casting straight out into the creek and then dropping my rod tip slightly up stream so I could twitch the fly slightly as it flowed down the current. This gives the fly a slight pausing action as it flows down and this can be a great way to entice strikes from fish when other methods are not working.

The fly I was using was the Pheasant Tail Soft Hackle, one of my most used flies because it is almost always a dependable producer for me. Be sure to get one of our DRAGONtail hats for good luck a NIRVANA Small Stream Net with rubber netting to net up your good luck creek fish. The NIRVANA Sling Pack is also great for carrying all your gear, lunch, and a spare rod on your day hiking adventures. 


Tell Us About Your Favorite Tenkara Advantages In The Comments Below

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