In October of 2009 I fished with my first tenkara rod. Like many of us back then I bought a tenkara rod as a sort of novelty – I figured it would find a niche place among my western rods, to be taken out only here and there for a change of pace. I didn’t plan on tenkara taking over completely. It did.
Why “Three Rivers Tenkara” ? : I’m from Pittsburgh and the term “Three Rivers” is practically synonymous with this city where the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers come together to form the Ohio. Pittsburgh sits at a great confluence of three rivers.
Now in America we are also at a confluence – a confluence of two great fly fishing traditions. And when these two come together it is inevitable that something new is formed – whether a new thing in actuality or only new attitudes and thoughts. My fishing past and my love of tenkara have come together and I’m being carried along in that new river. I have the greatest appreciation and respect for the history and tradition of tenkara in Japan. But I can’t help to change things a bit, even if I don’t intend it – my tenkara will necessarily be something different.
I don’t pretend to be a master of Japanese tenkara, modern or traditional, but I choose to honor those traditions by picking up a tenkara rod and heading to the stream in the spirit of brotherhood with the original Japanese anglers and all of the new ones across the globe. Three more rivers – the river of tenkara’s birthplace, the river I’m fishing and the river you’re fishing wherever you are.
Heraclitus said something like “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.” To me that quote always brings to mind Three Rivers – the river I’m fishing now, the river I remember fondly from yesterday, and the river I anticipate fishing tomorrow.
My sincere hope is that by offering the excellent Tenkara Times, Oni rods and Tenkara Tanuki rods, I can help folks to set off happily on their own tenkara adventure. Who knows what it will be like? But I hope it will be unique and it will be your own – but mostly I hope it will be fun. Grab a tenkara rod and a box of flies and get started creating your own new Three Rivers.