Dragontail Mizuchi

Just received mine and it seems awesome, I’m very happy with the action just swinging it around.

I’ve been using it the past few days and caught about a dozen fish on it up to 13 inches. I’ve been using it in the longest and middle configurations. Have yet to really test it in the shortest one. First impression is that it feels heavier in the hand than my Zen Tenkara Suzume (seems to be the closest competitor to this rod), but it casts better for me. So far, so good.

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First fish I caught on the rod:


Nice that it has the nod to Dr. Tom (Teton Tenkara) on the opposite side from the DT label.

Did some lawn casting today. Nice, small 12’ casting groups as well as a lucky bow and arrow 4" bullseye at the 240 cm length with unweighted flies using a #3 line. I could feel the rod load at the 290 cm length and groups were smaller. Planning to visit a favorite small brushy creek with lots of overhead cover that holds chunky wild Coastal Cutts to 13" tomorrow to see how it compares to my TT Watershed 300.


Ok spent some time lawn casting, I really think Tom Davis hit the nail on the head. This rod casts a 4m line beautifully at all lengths. I’m not sure how Tom and DT did it but this is a first for a triple zoom rod where the tip weight is amazing at each length. It’s flex feel to me is a solid 6/4. I can see this as and every day carry rod. It’s kind of like the first leather man multi tool, possibly game changing. Next will be a solid 8-10 hour day of fishing it to see if it keeps up my admiration.

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Interesting observations. I’ve just been reading through the tekito-tenkara blog post about his recommendations for selecting a tenkara rod, and found that I would agree with most of his 6 points.

First that the center of gravity of the rod, (I would say a rod with low moment) is more important than the overall weight of the rod. A rod that feels light in the hand. Not tip heavy.

Second, that it is more difficult to make a low cost long rod that is not tip heavy, they will always have a long center of gravity balance point. For a beginner it is a wiser choice, if on a budget, to buy a shorter rod where tip heaviness would be less noticeable.

Third, that most rods sold as beginner rods, are not very good rod for a beginner with poor casting skills. Better to chose a higher quality rod that is not too hard, that is not to stiff, and if budget demands it, buy a shorter better quality rod that will cost less than a higher quality longer rod. [I think that is true, once you’ve developed some casting skill you can cast a poor rod pretty well, but when you have poor casting skills, and you try casting a good quality rod, it feels like your casing skill magically increased dramatically - it’s like an invisible skilled caster came with the rod and is sitting on your shoulder] :wink:

The point being - it seems in your opinion the Mizuchi rod is achieving those 3 qualities at each length.
Oh, and I’m guessing that maybe the Mizuchi name is for 水地, water world or water place?

Speaking of new rods. I just discovered a recently (Aug. 14) introduced tenkara rod tube in Japan that seems kind of nice.
テンカラロッドチューブ [tenkararoddochūbu] tenkara rod tube.




Hi everyone! I am in Guatemala now, and have been lurking in the background. It’s been fun to read your posts.

Thank you for the positive first impressions on the Mizuchi. I’m hoping that as you use it more you will see that it performs as it is designed.

Catch a bunch of fish with it and post the pictures on the forum. I will enjoy fishing vicariously through you!



I’ve been enjoying the Mizuchi, I hit up both Little and Big Cottonwood creeks. It feels most like an Oni Type III out of the rods I own or have cast. I’m really enjoying it, love the fact that it zooms. I’m going to try out an even more overgrown creek with more challenging conditions.


Nice job Tom and Brent, haven’t had a chance to fish the rod yet but it cast 6m of #3 nylon and #2 fluoro LL with a tight loop accurate delivery, rod has good feedback and excellent damping, fit and finish are excellent as well, the rod feels well balanced at all lengths. Was able to cast the long ultralight lines even at the 240 length but it was not very pretty, the 290 and 340 lengths cast the light line so well I traded them out for my 8m Oni #2.5 fluoro practice line and the rod did amazing at the 340 length, shorter rod and longer lines I raise my arm and cast with short strokes to keep the line from hitting the ground behind me, this rod really is a good choice for an all around small to medium mountain stream rod. Experience shows, tenkara fisherman outside of Japan are coming up with some excellent rods these days, the better feel they have for the cast the better casting rods they make.


So uh… I caught an 18-inch rainbow today (new PB) on this rod in a small creek. Handled it like a champ!


Makes me want one but, I don’t need it.

In my case, there is a huge difference.

Glad you guys like it.

image fished at lunch today, caught two blue gills, a chub and hooked a huge brown that luckily snapped my tippet.

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Tried it on a small brushy creek that I normally fish with my 5:5 Watershed 300Z. I landed several Cutts from dinks to 9", at all 3 lengths. But I launched some dinks losing them, and didn’t get a good hook set to lose about as many larger fish as I landed. After reading the other reports sounds like it’s just me that will take getting some getting used to the Mizuchi.

I speak all of maybe a dozen words in Japanese, but do speak Mandarin conversationally and can read a fair amount of simplified Chinese. “水地“ is kind of an awkward set of characters. Literally “water ground”. That said, the character “地” doesn’t really appear by itself. It is however used in conjunction with other characters quite often - 本地,地方,地址. Meaning “local”,”area/locality/place” and “address” respectively.

In Chinese, water world might appear something like “水世界”. If those characters are present in Kanji, then perhaps in Japanese as well.

I think you are correct. And in Japanese “水世界” I think would be more correct for water world. “水地“ is, as you pointed out, literally “water ground”, but probably means something like water area or even ground water. テンカラの世界 or テンカラ世界 would be “tenkara world”, “tenkara’s world” or “world of tenkara”. You might also recognize this one “日記”, diary or journal. Literally “day-record”. テンカラ日記, tenkara diary/journal. Whatever the correct translation the phonic for “水地“ is Mizuchi. The guys at Dragontail will know what translation inspired the name selection. :wink:

Several of the Asian countries, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Okinawa, etc., also use some of the Chinese Kanji in their written language (though the use has declined in recent years) where generally they will mean the same thing in each language. But of course the spoken word would be different in each language. 川 would mean river, 糸 would mean yarn or thread, and so on. After learning some Japanese I found I could often gain some idea of a topic when looking at the kanji on Chinese websites or stuff written in Chinese restaurants.

Correct Japanese pronunciation is complicated by whether a kanji is spoken (read) in native Japanese or with a near Chinese pronunciation or what they call Japanese or Chinese reading. Wherein the onyomi reading is closer to the original Chinese language and is mostly used for nouns. … The kunyomi reading is the indigenous Japanese pronunciation, most often when the kanji is for an adjective or verb. The kanji for water is a good example, 水, read as mizu, But in compound phrases such as: 水面, water surface or 水系, water system, the reading changes quite a bit, completely different. :thinking:

Anyway, if you can read Mandarin you will probably be able to understand the gist of a lot of written Japanese. I only know enough to reveal myself as being a fool, now and again. :open_mouth:

But spoken Chinese is also quite diverse. Several years ago I attended a company training class in Ohio, and there was a guy in my class from Shanghai. (unusual because most of the time people from that part of the world were sent to a company training facility in, I think, Hong Kong.). The first night I took him to a restaurant with out much success explaining what the different menu items were. He seemed to understand spoken English ok, but not speak it very well. Then our waitress said, we have a Chinese girl who is a waitress here, maybe she can help. Turns out she couldn’t. The guy from Shanghai spoke either Mandarin or Shanghainese, and the girl spoke Cantonese. She couldn’t communicate with him any better than I could. I was surprised their two languages were that much different. Though I suspected they could probably write notes to each other and be easily understood.


Best to think of the the languages of China being many different languages/dialects unified by a common system of writing (though I have seen non Hanzi (Japanese ‘kanji’) characters used as well). As you experienced, Cantonese and Mandarin are so dissimilar as to be mutually incomprehensible. The difference being as great, if not greater, than say between English and Dutch. And there are hundreds of languages in China.

On the island of Hainan where I lived, I encountered at least half a dozen languages or dialects, and I’m sure there were more. Some were only spoken in a very small geographical area. As in this little town over there has it’s own dialect, separate from the language spoken by the rest of the island, which is different than Mandarin. Other languages were spoken by different ethnic groups, in this case the Li and Miao peoples on the island.

As for the character “記”, I honestly didn’t recognize it. Plugging it into my dictionary, I found out it it is Traditional Chinese, not the Simplified Chinese that I can (somewhat) read. I know that word as “remember” or “记”. Though my dictionary also says that it can mean “note” or “record”. Either way, “day remember”, “day record” or “day note” are all pretty good translations of diary, no?

I am familiar with three different words/characters for river: “河”, “江” and “川”. “he”, “jiang” and “chuan” respectively. The latter pinyin word would be familiar to those that enjoy the spicy food of Sichuan province. I have my ideas about why some flowing waterways are “chuan” and others are “jiang”, but these ideas are pure guesses. I’ve not noted the former two characters used in the Japanese fishing videos that I’ve seen.

Anyway, enough distraction from the main topic. I wish Dragontail and all Mizuchi owners a lot of happiness with these rods. If I’d not just purchased a Pro Spec 320, I likely would have purchased one through their Indiegogo program.

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Tom’s Teton Tenkara Mizuchi announcement mentions the rod name’s meaning with this link to a Wikipedia article:
“The Mizuchi (water dragon) zx340 is a multi-length rod that can be fished in the 240, 290, and 340 cm lengths.”

Thanks Brian,
I’ve been found out again as a fool. There are many homonyms in Japanese. Very easy to select the wrong kanji, but it keeps the study of Japanese language (or word meanings, etymology in general) from getting boring. And making mistakes leads to discovery of interesting bits. Probably boring to most people. However, when I’m in the right mood for it, I eat that kind of stuff up.

From your Mizuchi link: " in olden times pronounced mi-tsu-chi , the word can be broken down to mi “water” + tsu a [particle] meaning “of” + chi “spirit”.

iow - Mizuchi = water (水) + tsu (ツ) = zu (ズ) , which is equivalent to modern case particle no (の) + chi (チ) means spirit or spiritual power (霊力). [ 「チ」は「 霊力 」などを意味する語尾と説明される 。“Chi” is described as suffix ending, meaning such as “spiritual power”.]

Thus Mizuchi can also have the meaning of , 水の霊力 (mizu no reiryoku) Water’s spirit (power)
Or substituting a homonym kanji for chi (知) = knowledge. Gives 水の知 (mizu no chi) Water Knowledge.
Kind of a play on word meaning similar to tenkara = Ten Colors. 10カラー [10 karā] :wink:

I think it’s kind of cool that Mizuchi can refer to both: a water spirit dragon, with possibly a deeper meaning of Water spirit power or Water knowledge.

And I learned that 蛟 (みずち) mizuchi is the kunyomi, Japanese reading / pronunciation. And the onyomi reading of 蛟 is こう (kō), きょう (kyō).

The Japanese Mizuchi evolved from the Chinese flood dragons, Jiaolong or Xiaolong. But over time diverged a lot and in Japan is thought of as a water spirit, symbolized by a dragon. And mizuchi were written about in ancient Japanese chronicles called the Nihon Shoki (日本書紀).

“The Nihon Shoki (日本書紀), sometimes translated as The Chronicles of Japan, is the second-oldest book of classical Japanese history. The book is also called the Nihongi (日本紀, “Japanese Chronicles”).”

Fun stuff. If you like looking at weird stuff. Being a member of - keepers of odd knowledge society - helps. :open_mouth:

If you’re intrigued by this sort of thing, see:


digital translation of https://ja.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/蛟



But, enough of this diversion. My apologies for diverting this thread from: fishing reports, reviews, impressions of the Dragontail Mizuchi tenkara pole.