First up is the Midwest Tenkara Fest. The Fest is being held on the weekend of May 20-21, 2017. This event is holds a special place in my heart. I’d started a series of annual trips to the Driftless the year before this event first happened. I had gone out there in 2014 and just fell in love – see my post about it. When the first Fest happened in 2015 I couldn’t attend because I’d already scheduled a trip and was in the Driftless the preceding week. Finally last year I was able to make the event and had a blast meeting folks and giving my first tenkara presentation and also being there as a vendor As Three Rivers Tenkara (first time for that too). I was so nervous…. I think the talk went okay (that’s what people said anyway – but really who’s gonna tell you that you suck to your face?). It must have been at least bearable because they’re letting me come back.
The event is organized by Matt and Mike at Badger Tenkara and rather than making it all about Badger Tenkara they have been gracious enough to have other tenkara companies attend. They don’t have to do that of course – and it’s right cool of them – right on brothers.
If you’re considering the trip – the itself is in Coon Valley, WI – but that’s a small town (they’re all small out that way) – so losing is limited in the immediate vicinity. But there are cabins and cottages to rent and campgrounds too. Check out the Travel and Lodging page on the event website for some other options.
The Driftless Angler in Viroqua is a must stop to get clued in on the area streams, get some local flies and a handy map of the area (with streams). They have a page on their website with lodging options too.
If you’re looking to do some research the State of Wisconsin does a nice job of providing fishing maps and securing access on the properties through which the streams run. A good start is to go to this page and look at the trout stream maps for Vernon County and all of the surrounding counties (Monroe, LaCrosse, Richland and Crawford.) We caught fish everywhere we went when we’ve been out that way – but it’s good to have lots of options. You’ll find tiny streams and bigger streams (often one stream goes from tiny to bigger – and is fishable most of the length). and some will clear quickly after rain and some will stay high and muddy. Many wind through meadows and pastures – but you’ll find a few that are more woodsy.
In addition to the great fishing there will of course be presentations and vendors – check out the Tenkara Fest webpage for details.
I have to admit I don’t know much about this event and I know nothing about the area – but it looks like a fun time. You can find out all all about this event which runs from July 21-July23, 2017 by visiting the Tenkara Bug Out webpage. You’ll find links to lodging and travel info, local fly shops and the schedule of events.
I won’t be able to get out there – but I’ll have to put it on the schedule for next year.
Last but not least the Tenkara Jam at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC on September 30 and October 1, 2017 (not Cherokee as in 2016). Sorry for using last year’s graphic but this event is still a way off and the organizers have not yet created a graphic for the 2017 event. Details on presenters and vendors have not been finalized for this years event but if you go to the Tenkara Jam website you can see who was there last year as a presenter and/or vendor.
As my alter ego, Three Rivers Tenkara, I was there last year as a vendor and a presenter. I’ll be there again this year as a vendor for sure (and a presenter if they’ll have me). Jason Sparks and company put on a terrific event and the autumn is wonderful time to visit and fish down that way. The fishing possibilities abound and it is also a great place to take the significant others for a fall getaway weekend.
So mark your calendars and keep an eye on the Tenkara Jam website for details they become available.