When I first came to Japan one of my very first Tenkara trips was to Katashina with my friend Kado-san. We fished several rivers and at night we slept in his “cabin”. So, when he mentioned that he need some help cleaning out some old ski equipment from the attic I was more than happy to offer my services. The neighborhood around his “cabin” is quite picturesque and the river is beautiful.
There are two rivers that run through Katashina, the Ogawa and the Katashinagawa. The Ogawa is a shorter river and its headwaters are in a more populated area, therefore it sees more pressure and doesn’t feel as remote. Over the weekend I did see a lot of fishermen on the Ogawa and due to the lack of C&R fishing ethic in Japan (a fact that I find almost as frustrating as their penchant for building dams) there wasn’t many fish in the river. However, I did get very lucky and brought to hand quite possibly the largest fish in the river! She put up quite a fight, putting a nice bend in my Tenryu Furaibo TF39TA, and even took me for a run!
While the Ogawa isn’t really a destination river if you’re in town and have a few hours free it does offer some fun fishing. And who knows maybe you’ll get lucky and catch ‘big bertha’ 😀
If you are planning a visit to Tokyo and want to do some hiking and fishing Katashina is hard to beat. The locals are very friendly and the public transportation is easy and frequent. There are several ski resorts in the area too and even some great backcountry skiing so this area is literally a four season destination.
A Katashina tourism brochure from 1996