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Tenkara Flies From the Summit

Tenkara Flies From the Summit
written by Jason

The flies were flying at this year's summit with anglers generously opening their fly boxes to share some of their favorite patterns with other attendees. On Friday, I was lucky enough to fish with Dr. Ishigaki and the other Japanese tenkara anglers that flew in for the event.  Everyone marveled at my fly box made by Rick Setina. They were especially impressed with the wooden hinges.  We passed our fly boxes around and traded a few flies before hitting the river.

 Dr. Ishigaki's fly box needs no introduction. It's undoubtedly the most famous fly box in the tenkaraverse and seeing it in person was a real thrill.  To me, looking though someone else's fly box is tantamount to peering into their soul.

Dr. Ishigaki's Fly Box

Dr. Ishigaki's Fly Box.

He gave me two flies.  I was expecting the standard Ishigaki kebari with a black thread body and brown hackle.  Instead, I was surprised to get two peacock body flies; one with a cream colored hackle and one with olive hackle.

Peacock Ishigaki Kebari with Dark Hackle

Peacock Ishigaki Kebari with Dark Hackle.

Peacock Ishigaki Kebari with light Hackle

Peacock Ishigaki Kebari with light Hackle.

Since these flies are unusual Ishigaki kebari, I think I will get them framed. Another interesting fly I snagged was from Eiji Yamakawa (known on the Tenkara USA forums as "Eddie"). He likes bright flies on eyeless hooks and uses high visibility 20 lb. Dacron backing for the loop.  His flies are beautifully colorful and his fly box looks like an artist's palette.

Eiji Yamakawa's Kebari

Eiji Yamakawa's Kebari.

There's been a fair amount of buzz lately about snake skin kebari (mamushi kebari) and I was fortunate enough to bump into Matt Donovan (statikpunk on the forum) who shared one of his snakeskin body flies with me.

Snake Skin Kebari

Snake Skin Kebari tied by Matt Donovan[/caption] Matt actually sent me some skin from a bull snake a while back but I haven't had much time to experiment with it.  But seeing his fly in person makes me want to run to the vise and start.  The skin makes for a very buggy looking fly with lots of variegation that provide good contrast.  He also told me that it's the most durable material he's ever used for a fly body.  Don't be surprised if I post my version of the snake skin kebari soon. Kebari were the currency of the Summit--happily traded to network, and form new, lasting relationships.  Flies are easier to make than money.  And unlike in real life, at the summit, I enjoyed walking around with a fat wallet (my fly box).  I wish it worked that way in the "real" world.

Did you snag any interesting flies from the Summit?