The Fly Fishing Ninja

I had already fallen in love with this art by then. I wanted to be a flyfisher. I saved every single pocket money towards the kit. It took me more than one year to save 7000Yen($NZ92.00). I finally bought a Shakespeare Beginners set, which included a rod, reel, line, tapered leader and 5 dry flies and 5 streamers
New Zealand Fly Fishing Guide Kunio Onishi

It is our supreme pleasure and an absolute privilege to welcome the fly fishing ninja, Kunio Onishi on board as our newest Epic Ambassador.
Hailing from Japan, Kunio is well known to New Zealand Anglers and particularly  the two handed fraternity. As New Zealand's only full time Spey Fishing guide  Kunio is a master of the long rod, his guiding operation  is highly regarded by Kiwis and International Anglers. Kunio is a wonderfull teacher and also offers Spey Casting Tuition.
As with all our Ambassadors we first came into contact with Kunio as a customer, after purchasing a couple of our rod building kits

Welcome Kunio - we're absolutely stoked to have you on the team!

Kunio Onishi, fly fishing ninja

New Zealand Fly Fishing Guide Kunio Onishi

"When was the last time I didn’t go fishing…

My father was a mad keen fisherman, not a flyfisher though, he took me out every single time he went for a fish. My hobby was fishing, obviously, and reading books, but just fishing books. If I think about it, fishing is already part of my life.

I have a younger sister, she used to have a serious ear disease, mum had to take her to the specialist 3 times a week. I could have stayed at home by myself reading books(I didn’t have a Nintendo!), but I went with them every single time. Because… there was a little Lure&Fly shop near by. I was 10 years old then. Everything in the shop was expensive for a little boy. I was just looking at those beautiful rods, reels, lures and fly tying materials. The owners of the shop, Mr and Mrs Kawamoto, welcomed me every single time I went. It must have been really funny and awkward for them to see a kid by himself come to their shop. They knew I wasn’t going to buy anything but they gave me nice smile and warm atmosphere every single time I visited. And guess what!? I went to the shop 3 times a week for about 10 months and didn’t buy a thing!

I had already fallen in love with this art by then. I wanted to be a flyfisher. I saved every single pocket money towards the kit. It took me more than one year to save 7000Yen($NZ92.00). I finally bought a Shakespeare Beginners set, which included a rod, reel, line, tapered leader and 5 dry flies and 5 streamers. 

I practiced casting every single day after school.

I still remember clearly, the very first fish I caught with my fly rod. A little rainbow trout. I was a very happy boy. 

Soon, like other flyfishers, I became really keen to catch fish with my own flies. I kept helping in my parent’s shop to save money for a fly tying set. Months later, I bought a cheapest Veniard vise, scissors, bobbin holder etc, minimum essentials. The owners of the fly shop knew I still didn’t have much money, so they kindly donated to me the rest of the stuff I needed, including hooks, threads and some basic materials. Mr Kawamoto even drew me step by step instructions for specific patterns. At this time, I realised that a Fishing God was always behind my back, incredible things were kept happening. 

New Zealand Fly Fishing Guide Kunio Onishi

The very first fly I tied was a Montana Marabou, and I caught a tiny Large Mouth Bass with it. The priceless moment.

From that day, I just became unstoppable. Of course I went fishing with Dad but there are also many rivers and ponds around our home. Trout, Largemouth Bass, Snake-Head, Carp… I was so lucky.

At one stage, my friends and I were fishing every single day, even early morning, before the school! 

I was a mad flyfisher in my whole teenage period, then one day, in late 1990’s, “Phase 2” of my flyfishing journey started.

I never ever knew there was an another style of flyfishing - Spey. Using a big, long double hand rod, maneuvering 60-80ft of fly line out from the rod tip, then sweeping the rod backwards to create a D loop and shooting it well over 100ft without a single false cast. Wow…

Andy Murray, Spey casting instructor from House of Hardy came to Japan for casting demonstration. His beautiful, effortless, smooth casts were unforgettable. It was like magic.

I fell in love with the art of Spey casting at this moment. 

I moved from Japan to New Zealand about 9 years ago with my kiwi wife and 2 kids, living in a little town called Taupo. 

I am a registered professional fly fishing guide(a proud member of the NZPFGA) here in the Central North Island. The mighty Tongariro river is only 35mins away, dozens of other incredible waters are in 100km radius. What a place to be! 

New Zealand  King Fish New Zealand Fly Fishing Guide Kunio Onishi

I love casting dry flies/nymphs with Epic 580 in small streams, chasing Carp and SeaBass in Japan every year with 888 and stalking Big Kingfish with my trusty #10 Bandit on the Tauranga harbour. I also love Spey fishing especially in fall/winter period on mid/large size rivers and lake edges. As Spey fishing is getting more popular here in New Zealand, my business is leaning towards more to the Spey style, I do many casting schools and one on one teaching. People wants to know how to cast, swing and catch fish more efficiently. I also run fly tying classes too, specialising in tube flies and intruder style patterns for NZ rivers and lakes.

I have bought ridiculous numbers of rods, reels, lines since I started flyfishing and I still do. I strongly believe that as a professional fishing guide and a mad flyfisher, I must know what’s the latest gear available on the market and which ones are the real deal.

And always… I use only the best.

Kunio Onishi, flyfishingninja



Epic Gift Card - Gifts For Fly Anglers
Epic Gift Card - Gifts For Fly Anglers from $50.00
Give the Gift of Choice No Delays, No Shipping. The Perfect Fly Fishing Gift On Time Every Time - Instant Delivery! Looking for the perfect gift for the Fly Angler in your life? Give them the gift of choice with a gift card. Gift cards are delivered by email from you directly from our website and contain instructions to redeem them at checkout. Gift cards are charged and redeemed on our stores base currency - $US For customers outside of the USA you can still shop and check-out in your native currency, our store does the conversion for you. Shopping for someone else (or yourself) but not sure exactly what to choose?Not sure what to get? Length, color or size?  It's very easy with an Epic Gift Card. You give - they choose! Schedule a Time to Send!You can even prescheduled  time / day / date that you would like your Gift Card delivered What is this?Gift Cards are delivered to you the purchaser by email and contain simple instructions to redeem them at checkout for products in our store. Each gift card features a unique code. Your gift card can also be printed out and gifted to the recipient, or it can be emailed to them immediately. Need Help? - drop us a line and we'll help you or your gift card recipient choose. How does it Work? Simple, you purchase the gift card you would like to give and check out just like you would for any online purchase. Our system will send you an email the recipient your gift card with your custom message. (That gift card has a unique voucher code on it) The recipient uses the voucher code to redeem against the purchase of their choice. Questions: Gift Cards work just like cash Any unspent balance can be used later Purchases can be topped up with cash, credit card or Paypal for larger purchases Customers can check their balance by visiting the unique gift card link sent via email Gift Cards have no additional processing fees. Purchase in your native currency to be redeemed at any time.Any questions or problems, just email us
Double Fly Rod & Reel Vault Bag Epic Backcountry Double Fly Rod & Reel Vault Bag
Backcountry Double Fly Rod & Reel Vault $83.99 $119.95
Backcountry Double Fly Rod & Reel Vault Fish faster and smarter with the Backcountry Double Fly Rod Vault! This powerhouse of a storage solution is designed to carry two 9ft fly rods and reels, rigged up and ready to roll. Durably crafted from tough, water-resistant 600D Cordura material and reinforced by 210D Ripstop Polyester inner, you can rest assured your valuable fly rods and reels will be safe in all conditions. Waterproof YKK zippers keep moisture and dust out while the thickly padded interior protects your precious fly reels from being scratched. A hardshell outer helps look after your fly rods no matter what terrain awaits you. This is an unbeatable way to transport two complete setups. Save time and be ready to fish at a moment's notice!
Best fly reel for fly fishing as voted by field and stream best of the best Best fly reel waterproof fly reel
Backcountry Fly Reel $295.99 $399.95
Large Arbor Backcountry Fly Reel II The best looking fly reel on the river. Our Backcountry fly reel features a smooth, sealed ceramic drag mechanism that boasts 3kg of drag and is easily swapped from left to right-hand wind. Super smooth sealed drag, lightweight large arbor, stealthy satin finish. Suitable for both fresh and saltwater use. CNC machined from cold-forged tempered 6061-T6 aluminum, High capacity large arbor spool Waterproof sealed stacked ceramic drag Type III military spec hard anodised finish Suitable for both fresh & saltwater use Large Arbor Spool The large arbor spool features a curved U shaped design that adds strength and assists in line levelling upon retrieval. The exposed reel edge makes for easy palming. A no-nonsense, tough, waterproof and lightweight fly reel. Epic in every way. Finished in a stealthy low sheen type III hard anodised satin finish available in any color as long as it's black.  Backcountry 3/4 Backcountry 5/6 Backcountry 7/8 Weight: 115g (4oz) Weight: 131g (4.6oz) Weight: 139g (4.9oz) Capacity: line + 50m  Capacity: line + 100m  Capacity: line + 150m  Dia:  84mm Dia: 94mm Dia: 104mm Got questions? - Drop us a line, we'd love to hear from you.
Fly Tying Tool Kit by Epic Fly Tying Tool Kit by Epic
Backcountry Fly Tying Kit $138.99 $199.00
Backcountry Fly Tying Kit Equally at home on a trip or on your fly tying bench, our Backcountry Fly Tying kit features the very best Italian made tools by Stonfo and a pair of remarkable hand crafted fly tying scissors by Renomed of Poland. There are no finer fly tying tools made. We've taken the best of the best and presented them in a thoughtful waxed cotton canvas tool roll featuring genuine leather trim and straps fastened with classic brass catches. The hand stitched waterproof tool roll houses & protects these high quality tools and features two additional pouches to tuck away fly tying materials and hooks. The Renomed "Fly Tier" scissors feature a 'super cut' finely serrated blade that makes cutting deer hair and fur a breeze, and the larger scissor handles afford comfort and extraordinary durability and functionality. Tool Collection  Renomed Fly Tier Super Cut scissors (retail US$45) Stonfo Dubbing Twister Stonfo Hackle pliers Stonfo Elite Bodkin (Stainless Steel) Stonfo Dubbing Brush Stonfo Bobtec1  Adjustable Bobbin With Ceramic Insert (Stainless Steel) Stonfo Elite Bodkin (Stainless steel) Stonfo Elite Whip Finisher (Stainless Steel)
Stainless steel Hip Flask Hip Flask
Good Libations Stainless Hip Flask $23.99 $34.95
The Good Libations Stainless Steel Hip Flask  Carry your favourite adult beverage in style with our Good Libations Stainless Steel Hip flask. About the size of a small fly box it's the perfect addition to your fly vest or bag. Smooth rounded corners make for quick extraction in times of celebration. Stainless steel and about as tough as they come, at a hearty 9oz ( 28 ml) there's plenty to share! Stainless Steel Silicon cap retainer Easy sippin' ergo design Bigger than most Cheers! Capacity: 9oz ( 266 ml) Dimensions: 127mm x 83mm x 29ml Material: Stainless Steel Positive Mood Adjustment
Stroft Tippet carry system Stroft Cutter and Carry System - 3 spool Set
Stroft Cutter and Carry System - 3 spool Set $27.95
3 Spool Stroft tippet system Three high quality German made Stroft Cutter & retaining rings - made to fit over standard Stroft tippet Spools. Spool Holder Stroft short strap - Vest strap & Carabiner The ideal system to hold, dispense and trim Stroft tippet A retainer rings and high quality cutter ring. Cutter is razor sharp, and coated in some magical stuff that is corrosion resistant. (We couldn't even spell the alloy) Fits all Stroft spools from 25m to 50m (ABR, GTM, FC!, FC2, Fluer) Includes colour coded easy peel labels  This is an incredibly well made tippet system! *does not include spools of tippet material - Stroft Tippet Spools available for purchase separately  Got questions? - Drop us a line, we'd love to hear from you.

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