Schools

Tenkara Angler, in conjunction with Tenkara Guides LLC & Riverworks Rod Co., is excited to offer Oni Tenkara & Tactical Nymphing classes in the Driftless on June 6-7 & 9-10, 2022!

Join tenkara fly fishing guide Robert M. Worthing of Tenkara Guides LLC for an immersive experience in Oni Tenkara, Tactical Nymphing, or both! Students will enjoy two or four days of instructional fishing on the famous trout waters of the Wisconsin Driftless Region. The cost of attendance for each school is $450 and includes 16 hours of focused, on the water instruction. Price does NOT include applicable gratuity/tip. Lunch and refreshments will be provided each day.

These are two separate schools and enrollment will be limited to 10 students per class to ensure optimal learning conditions. Registration for both events will open on this page March 31st. The first 24 hours of availability are reserved exclusively for anglers who joined our “insiders” list by responding with their interest. Remaining slots will be available for open registration beginning on April 1st.

Classes will meet and fish on the iconic spring creeks near Westby, WI. To ensure students receive the best possible experience, the exact time and location will be provided to registered participants only. All lodging options listed below are within convenient travel distance to the class. Please contact Matt Sment at driftlesstenkarafishing@gmail.com for assistance planning local lodging and travel, if needed.

Tenkara Schools - Driftless
Driftless Creeks near Westby, WI

So act quick to secure your class space and lock in your attendance. If needed, you’ll be able to cancel for full refund (less administration fees) until April 30th, 2022. Cancellations/refunds beyond that date will only be granted in the case of complete event cancellation.


Driftless Oni Tenkara School
June 6 & 7, 2022

Oni Tenkara School is the distinct tenkara fly fishing style of Masami “Tenkara No Oni” Sakakibara. Widely regarded as the greatest living tenkara fly fishing master, Oni’s School of Tenkara emphasizes the angler’s relationship with the river environment, blends casting and drift into a single act of fly presentation, and utilizes elegant techniques to maximize success across diverse conditions. (Note: While his style and techniques will be taught, Masami Sakakibara will not be in attendance.)

$450.00

Registration is Closed

Oni School Syllabus
Orientation
  • Welcome
  • License & Gear Check
  • Safety Stand-down
Introduction to Oni Tenkara
  • Origins in History
  • Philosophy – Five Tactics for Tricking Fish, Formulating a Nymphing Strategy
Three Subjects Every Fly Angler Should Study
  • Ichthyology (study of trout & char)
  • Hydrology (study of water over land)
  • Entomology (study of insects & other food)
Tactical Application on the Water
  • Rod
  • Line
  • Fly
  • Rigging
  • The Angler
Improved Fly Presentation: Blending Cast and Drift
  • Casting
  • The Drift
  • Fly Manipulation
Playing & Landing Fish
The Next Step
  • Summary of Lessons Learned
  • What Comes After the School
What to Bring
Students are responsible for ensuring the following items:
  • Valid Wisconsin Fly Fishing License
  • Boots & Waders (waist or higher)
  • Appropriate seasonal clothing for indoor and extended outdoor activity
Students are encouraged to bring the following personal fly fishing gear*:
  • Tenkara rod (12-13ft)
  • Rigging materials (hi-viz level line, 4-6x tippet)
  • Flies (size 12 or larger hackled kebari/wet flies)
  • Nippers/scissors, hemostats, & other on-water tools
  • Polarized sunglasses
  • Wading Staff
  • Fly tying kit/materials
  • Personal water bottle or equivalent
  • Backup clothing in case of wetness
  • Open mind and friendly attitude
  • A good night’s sleep

*Oni School Tenkara uses modern tenkara rods to cast lightweight tenkara level line. Students are encouraged to come equipped with the same. Use of personal fly fishing gear optimizes learning by ensuring lessons translate to the student’s fly fishing after the school ends. Limited rod, line, and flies will be available for loan to students who are ill-equipped. 


Driftless Tactical Nymphing School
June 9 & 10, 2022

Tactical Nymphing is a philosophy, or way of thinking, about your fly fishing. Based off the most effective fly fishing methods through history, Tactical Nymphing combines five discrete fish-catching tactics to create personalized on-water strategies that maximizes the angler’s probability of tricking fish. These tactics and strategies can be equally effective for both fixed line and fly rod and reel anglers. The result is an adaptive angler who knows more, catches more, and has more fun doing it. 

$450.00

Registration is Closed

Tactical Nymphing Syllabus
Orientation
  • Welcome
  • License & Gear Check
  • Safety Stand-down
Introduction to Tactical Nymphing
  • Origins
  • Philosophy – Five Tactics for Tricking Fish, Formulating a Nymphing Strategy
Three Subjects Every Fly Angler Should Study
  • Ichthyology (study of trout & char)
  • Hydrology (study of water over land)
  • Entomology (study of insects & other food)
Tactical Application on the Water
  • Rod
  • Line
  • Fly
  • Rigging
  • The Angler
Improved Fly Presentation: Blending Cast and Drift
  • Casting
  • The Drift
  • Fly Manipulation
Playing & Landing Fish
The Next Step
  • Summary of Lessons Learned
  • What Comes After the School
What to Bring

For the best learning experience, students are highly encouraged to review and become familiar with the lessons in Tactical Nymphing outlined at tacticalnymphing.org prior to arrival.

Students are responsible for ensuring the following items:
  • Valid Wisconsin fly fishing license
  • Boots & Waders (waist or higher)
  • Appropriate seasonal clothing for indoor and extended outdoor activity
Students are encouraged to bring the following personal fly fishing gear*:
  • Rod (fixed line)**
  • Rigging materials (casting lines, 4-6x tippet, nylon sighter material, indicators, non-lead shot, etc.)
  • Flies (2mm-3.3mm tungsten bead nymphs, wet flies/flymphs, indicator dry flies, etc.)
  • Nippers/scissors, hemostats, & other on-water tools
  • Polarized sunglasses
  • Wading staff
  • Fly tying kit/materials
  • Personal water bottle or equivalent
  • Backup clothing in case of wetness
  • Open mind and friendly attitude
  • A good night’s sleep

*use of preferred personal fly fishing gear optimizes learning by ensuring lessons translate to the student’s fly fishing after the school ends. Limited rod, line, and flies will be available for loan to students who are ill-equipped. 

**use of fixed line rods (nymphing specific, tenkara, keiryu, etc) optimizes learning by allowing the student to concentrate on technique over gear. Lessons learned are universal. Students who intend to use rod and reel after the school may bring them, especially when equipment is nymphing specific. 


Local Driftless Area Resources

Fly Shop

Driftless Angler Fly Shop
The Driftless Angler is a full service fly shop located on the historic main street in Viroqua Wisconsin. A short drive from anywhere in the upper Midwest, it is centrally located within the Driftless Area’s thousands of miles of spring creek trout streams.

Motels

Vernon Inn and Suites
Located on the north end of town.  Free WiFi and continental breakfast.

Old Towne Motel
Located in Westby.  Free WiFi and continental breakfast, plus a resturant next door.

Hickory Hill Motel Viroqua
Located on the South end of town, the Hickory Hill Motel is another great place to stay in Viroqua. They do have kitchenette rooms available for those who want to do some cooking.

Norske Inn
Located in Westby.  Low rates and a cafe/restaurant next door.

Cabins, Lodges, & Apartments

Kickapoo River Lodge
3 bedroom and 3 bath outside of Soldier’s Grove.  The cabin is a classic rustic design with large south facing windows that allow the light to filter in and warm the whole house. There is an outdoor fire pit for roasting smores and canoes available to explore the river. You can choose to explore all of the incredible towns and scenery around, or take it all in from the deck and living room with never having to leave..

217 on Main
Apartments located downtown Viroqua within walking distance of the Co-op. There are 3 separate apartments within one beautifully revitalized building — each with private entrances and keyless digital entries. You can reserve the “blue door” and “green door”  for 2 days or longer, and the “red door” for 1 day — with special weekly and monthly rates.

Willow Creek Ranch Cabin
Cabin located on the banks of Spring Coulee.

Driftless House
4 Bedroom 3 bath house a couple minute walk from the shop and the Driftless Cafe!

The Honey Barn
Cabin located across the street from the West Fork of the Kickapoo.  2 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6, Beds for 6, Pets considered.

Nature’s Nook Retreat
3 cabins that sleep 8-4 on the banks of the West Fork of the Kickapoo.

Coulee Cabins
The Coulee Cabins offer all the clean and cozy comforts of authentic log cabin lodging with a majestic view of the area’s valleys and bluffs. Located across the street from the Timber Coulee

Ocooch Mountain Acres
Guest House and working maple syrup farm in Westby. Beautiful setting with more lodging opening up soon!

Quiet Valley Cabins
Scenic, affordably priced lodging in the heart of God’s Country. Part of a 150 year old farmstead in Coon Valley (Timber Coulee watershed) Quiet Valley Cabins LLC is an ideal retreat for those who want to quietly experience the beauty of God’s Country

Steinvatten Cabin
On a Timber Coulee tributary.  Beautiful log cabin in a quiet, tucked away valley.

Camping

Vernon County Campgrounds (Esofea & Sidie Hollow)
Excellent campsites featuring rustic all the way up to full hookups in certain areas.

West Fork Sportsmen’s Club
Camping along the West Fork of the Kickapoo. A very popular spot to fish and meet other anglers.

Bed & Breakfasts

Heritage Inn B&B Viroqua
Located in Wisconsin’s beautiful Hidden Valley Region, these elegant Victorian-era Bed and Breakfasts offer a unique and memorable opportunity to simply relax or enjoy the many activities available in and around Vernon County. Located only a couple blocks from the fly shop!

Westby House B&B, Westby
Only minutes away from the fly shop, and minutes away from the Timber Coulee and tributaries.

Justin Trails
Located in Sparta Wisconsin, less than an hour from Viroqua. The Justin Trails resort offers hiking and biking trails as well as some great amenities a short drive from our world class trout fishing.

Large Group Lodging

Logan Mill Lodge
Rent just one of the 3 condos if you are traveling alone or with a small group (up to 8 people). Rent 2 of the condos for slightly larger groups (up to 16 people). Rent the entire lodge for even larger groups (sleeps up to 24 people).  Expansion to sleep 30 coming soon.

Tenkara Schools - Rob Worthing

Contact Us For More Information

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