The following is the first of three entries written about the recent Winter Kebari/Fly swap held by the Appalachian Tenkara Anglers Facebook Group. Amanda served as the “Swap Master” and provides a bit of “behind the scenes” in each post as well as shares a few flies by the 30+ participants!
Part 1: What’s In A Swap?
Article by Amanda Hoffner
When I was approached by Jason Sparks to be the swap master of this winter’s kebari swap I was looking for stuff to do involving tenkara. It was January and I had decided not to take a college course and concentrate on work. I had just moved to the greater Boston area at the beginning of the year too and would be away from friends. This swap allowed me to increase my reach to more minds who involve themselves with tenkara.
Jason has been a great mentor during my time as the swap master. He has increased my knowledge of swapping kebari in general and maintaining good time management and increasing exposure to the swap to get more people involved.
With that being said, the swap involved everyone tying 12 identical kebari, outlining their supplies list, and including a self addressed/paid envelope to get the kebari safely back to them. The timeline for the swap included it being run for over a month with tying ending on February 28th and (hopefully) with kebari in my hand by the end of the next week. This will have the kebari packs sent back out to the tiers by mid March and ready for the Spring tenkara fishing to begin! I made sure to contact each tier and making sure they know I received their kebari.
Networking with these tiers has been an eye-opening experience. I had never really been involved in any fishing community, let alone the tenkara community, before these past few months and only began fishing tenkara full-time the past few years. I have had the opportunity to join a close-knit community called the Fixed Line Freaks based on Instagram in August of last year and that was where I was obtaining and acquiring most of my tenkara and fixed line fishing information. That is when my tenkara identity, LadyTenkaraBum was born.
When I noticed a post on Instagram by Tenkara Angler to submit pictures and articles to the print magazine, I was intrigued and wanted to add my content of the adventures I go on. My girlfriend is a nature and travel photographer currently based in Georgia and has taken me up and down the east coast and southern United States taking pictures of our adventures and of me fishing. She accompanies me on most of my adventures and I would say pushes me to explore even more often than I did before we had met.
With that, and because of her gnarly photo skills, I was chosen to be on the cover of the Winter issue of Tenkara Angler magazine! This really has increased the attention I have received in the tenkara community on Instagram and Facebook and I am excited to learn and grow as a tenkara angler. Expectations are increasing, but I am here for the challenge of being involved in the tenkara community and being a positive contributor to the group.
Back to the fly swap, when it came time to split up the kebari I was unsure how it should go down. I didn’t know whether to make some boxes the same or make sure all the tiers get 12 different kebari with no return packs the same. There were even some tiers who have tied extra dozens… while some who don’t want any in return. Maybe there will be more than 12 kebari in return!
With that being said, here are the first 11 kebari to showcase (in alphabetical order by tier) with my first impressions of each. You can see why the decision on how to split them out was made difficult by all of the great flies!
Amanda Hoffner, a half Japanese angler from Pennsylvania, began her tenkara passion when researching fly fishing methods from Japan. She can be found deep on a blue line in the Northeast of the United States fishing for native brook trout. Her Instagram name is @ladytenkarabum.
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