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Ebisu By Tenkara USA Review

Ebisu By Tenkara USA Review

by August 22, 2019 0 comments

The Tenkara USA Summit 2019 came to an end with a bang here at TenkaraGrasshopper.com. The Summit also added a new Tenkara USA Ebisu to the stable. I never owned the original Ebisu so this is a fresh review of an Old but New rod.

tenkara usa ebisu

Tenkara USA Ebisu Old but New

The Tenkara USA Ebisu 10th Anniversary Edition was released at the Tenkara Summit this year. The 10th Anniversary Edition is a rerelease of the original Ebisu.

The original Ebisu had a red pine wood handle. With a very soft action built on the 5:5 design model, the Ebisu gives a super soft casting stroke and presentation. From what I have read and heard, when the Tenkara USA Ebisu was discontinued, there were many disappointed anglers. Yet, many times the phoenix rises from the ashes.

Why did I not get this rod in the beginning?

Having fished the Ebisu almost exclusively for the last few weeks, I am very pleased with the rod.

The Cast

It took a bit for me to figure out the casting stroke necessary to present a kebari at first. Yet, like all things tenkara, the cast came intuitively after a bit of repetition. Admittedly, I have found myself avoiding what I would consider a super soft tip section in the past.

Currently, as part of my tenkara rig, I cast a #3.5 level line. I have yet to test the rod using the Tenkara USA Tapered Line in either length. With plenty of time for optimal fishing here in Colorado, I will definitely be testing a number of different rigs for casting.

The Sasoi

With my current experience using the level line at between 12′ and 15′ plus tippet I couldn’t be happier with my presentations. To see a fly fall smoothly to the water at the completion of a cast with this rod is truly a pleasure. I typically fish using traditional kebari patterns, although when the conditions dictate, I will throw on a “Western” dry fly! (Anything to catch a fish, aside from a hand grenade or snagging.)

The factor that keeps me picking up the rod consistently the past few trips is the quality of my presentations. Being able to execute many of the known sasoi techniques common to tenkara, the rod excels! Holding the Ebisu almost immediately give you an sense of its abilities. Using this rod I have had an increased number of hook-ups the moment my kebari lands on the water.

The Take and Landing

Especially deeper in the current, when a kebari is eaten by a fish, the take can sometimes be hard to sense. Definitely not the case with this rod, every take is passed to the angler with authority. Whenever there is a solid take, an angler can set on the fish with little to no difficulty.

While out fishing recently, I found out how amazing the rod functions when setting the hook and landing a fish!

I was at a local stretch of water that I guide regularly. Before heading home I pulled the rod out and started working my way down river. Loaded with pocket water, this stretch is quintessential tenkara perfect. Working my way to the first pocket, using a black Ishigaki #12, I presented my kebari up river. My drift was perfect, bouncing softly from the initial pocket into a lower tongue of water.

Watching my line closely I noticed a pause in it’s drift. At the same moment, I felt the gentle tap on the line. Lifting the rod gently, the battle started in earnest. In less than 30 seconds I was holding a gorgeous rainbow trout.

After releasing the rainbow, I moved downriver casting into another pocket. Before my drift even started a chunky brown engulfed my kebari surprising me. Bending with the weight of this fish on the line, with no difficulty I was able to bring the fish to net. Size wasn’t an issue, although the Ebisu made him feel much bigger than he was. They say “The Tug is The Drug!” and I couldn’t agree more.

Brown Trout On a Tenkara USA Ebisu

Ebisu Conclusions

Re-releasing the Ebisu was a great decision by Tenkara USA. Buying an Ebisu was a great decision on my part as well. Act now and get one before they are gone, I can guarantee that you will not be disappointed.

I feel there is only one drawback to this rod. As I stated at the beginning of this review, the original handle was made from red pine. I am not a fan of foam handled rods due to my liking of cork or wood. Because the handle is foam and not wood or cork, it still won’t stop me from fishing with the Ebisu on lots of occasions in the future.


Ebisu Image Sourced from Tenkara USA

The reviewer, Graham Moran, did not receive any compensation for this review.

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