Tenkara Trip Report
I recently returned from a family vacation to Maine. During our family vacation my wife allowed me to do a bit of tenkara fishing. I could not have asked for anything more than this opportunity to try a river close to my mother’s home.
My mother lives in a small community known as Yarmouth, Maine with my stepdad. Yarmouth is, in my humble opinion, your quintessential coastal Maine community. Some may recognize it as the former home of DeLorme, the maker of GPS units and a series of Atlas and Gazetteers for all 50 states.
Tenkara Fishing On The Royal River
The Royal River courses through the hamlet of Yarmouth not ten minutes from my mom’s home. Every time we headed anywhere North of town we crossed the Royal. The Royal runs downhill towards the Atlantic Ocean, passing what is known as the Grist Mill. The Royal through this section is filled with amazing pockets and runs perfect for tenkara. And with water temperatures clearly affected by seasonal variations, everything was perfect for catching fish.
Tenkara Fishing Guides In Maine?
Yes, there are actually tenkara guides in Maine!!!
Because I am not familiar with trout streams in Maine, I contacted a guide through Facebook to point me in the right direction. The guide I contacted was Daniel Pierce, II.
Dan lived over an hour away from Yarmouth but made the drive to meet me at his own will. Let me be clear on one thing about Daniel coming to show me around. He was stoked enough to meet me that he came down in the knowledge that no money was going to be exchanged. As a guide I can tell you this is something that does not happen often!!!
After Daniel arrived, we headed down to the Royal. He warned me the season was winding down and that we might struggle getting into fish. Apparently, Daniel is a consumate tenkara angler and guide proving himself wrong in short order.
Tenkara Fishing the Royal River
The expectations of catching fish were low, but we remained optimistic as we entered the Grist Mill Park. For some reason which still eludes me we went waderless. As luck would have it the structure allowed us to do this with no problem what so ever.
The sun was setting on the Grist Mill with our first casts. Daniel pointed out a number of fish rising to something near the surface of the water. Neither one of us were able to identify what the fish were eating, although it did not stop us from casting to these fish.
Successful Fishing Tenkara Style
Within a few short casts I got into my first Maine fish, even though I will admit it was what many would consider a “dink”. Catching this fish raised my level of confidence to a much higher level than originally expected.
I believe that this might be an Emerald Shiner. I may be wrong and to be honest, it would not be the first time.
Daniel and I continued fishing as the afternoon advanced, scanning the pockets througout the run, finding a tantalizing seam that called my name. Dropping my kebari softly at the head of the seam I watched with rapt attention as my line drifted slowly down stream. After a brief moment my tapered line went taught bending my rod virtually in half.
Setting the hook firmly into this piscatoral denizen of the Royal River I lifted my rod attempting to land this fish. Within moments I was able to control the fish using a simple hand sweep. To my delight, along with that of Daniel, I brought to hand my first Maine Brown Trout!
I have caught fish in many places, however this Brown Trout was by far one of the most pleasurable fish to bring to hand. This sensation was partially due to the fact that this was my first Maine Trout on a tenkara rod. I think what truly made this a spectacular fish was the fact that I had made a new tenkara friend for the remainder of my fishing career as a tenkara angler.
Culmination and Celebration
If it had not been for the guidance of Daniel, I would not be writing this post, nor would I be sharing pictures of a variety of fish that may be found in Maine.
Having brought a few fish to hand, Daniel and I decided to head home for a celebratory PBR before returning to our familial duties. It was such a pleasure being able to close out a successful day with Daniel while relaxing in the living room of my mom’s home.
Contacting Daniel Pierce
I would highly recommend Daniel as a tenkara guide if and when you visit Maine. Like I said before, Daniel is truly the consumate tenkara guide. He is very easy to talk to and extremely friendly. Daniel is currently a Tenkara USA Certified Guide through the Tenkara USA Guide Network. If you wish to contact Daniel to book a trip with him, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
When you do contact him, let him know that you are contacting him due to this post.