I arrived in Nagoya city the day before and spent an entertaining evening with good friends at the restaurant of Masahiro Hotta (Abdeal). I went to this place already two times before, and again I had the pleasure to try delicious traditional Japanese fish and seafood dishes. That a few new faces (Hello: @Kensuke4U, @VivaBuono, @muraki_suplex, @yamanekopro, @shida_syz !) joined us for dinner, made this evening even more enjoyable and memorable.

We started our trip to lake Biwa quite early (2:30 am!), but the 2-hour car ride from Nagoya passed by quickly thanks to a lively chat with Masahiro, who picked me up at the hotel. I was really excited by the prospect of topwater fishing from a canoe again, and the classic Navarro boat that was mounted on the vintage Toyota Crown (sorry, no photo…) was looking fantastic.

We met Taizo Shimazaki of Handsome Lures and Muraki at a convenience store close to the lake and after stocking up on snacks and drinks for breakfast, we took the lake-side road to our final destination. Boats and tackle where quickly prepared and with the rising sun in our backs, we started fishing a shallow river leading into the lake.

Lake Biwa
Masahiro looking focussed!

Lake Biwa
Hello there…

Until midday we had some bites and Muraki caught a first nice bass on Handsome‘s “Snif” (スニフ). It was the first time I got my hands on this slim-shaped double swisher, and I instantly regret not having added this great lure to my box on its release last year.

With rising temperatures, we started exploring the river in upstream direction, but besides some bass and carp sightings in shallow water, we didn’t recorded a single bite. Right before we quit fishing for a well deserved lunch break, Masahiro finally broke the deadlock and caught a sweet bass on a new version of his own “Slapper” design. Good catch and a promising new lure to look forward to!

Biwako Bass
Sweet catch and beautifully designed popper.

After lunch (Ramen, what else?!) and a little nap, we continued fishing the backwaters of the lake. In the heat of the afternoon and with increasing wind, topwater fishing became more tough and even if we found some promising spots every now and then, we ended up with only one bite. This one bite on Abdeal’s “SB Light” felt like a near miss and was haunting me all evening and night…

Lake Biwa
Promising spot…

Lake Biwa
Where are they hiding?

But even when fishing is tough, Biwako still has a lot to offer:

Lake Biwa
Simply magic light during the evening…

Lake Biwa
Muraki and Taizo Shimazaki in good mood.

Thanks again for a memorable day at Biwako and for all your patience!

You can find a blog post and more photos over on the Handsome blog

2 thoughts on “Biwako * Part One

  1. Mathias wrote on :

    Hi Christian,
    First of all big big compliments your site and blog is just stunning. I love to get inspired by your passion for details either your site, lures or fishing itself. I enjoy to check your posts.
    I am as well a german and currently living in Shanghai. I plan a trip to fish at lake Biwa but it feels kind of difficult to find good guides and infos ets. I wonder If you may help me for some tips or even get out fishing with me over there?! I plan my trip for end of june.


  2. Christian wrote on :

    Hi Mathias,
    thanks for your flattering comment. I’m glad you like what I’m doing here!
    Visiting Biwako at the end of June sound like a very good plan. I like traveling Japan during rainy season – mainly because fishing conditions are quite good. Unfortunately, I don’t have much information about guiding and spots worth trying.

    I went to Lake Biwa a few times during the past few years, but always with friendly lure builders or people I met during my travels. The language barrier will probably be the biggest obstacle while looking for good places and guides to go for. I fished different parts of the lake in the past and it’s quite hard to name favorite spots and places. Biwako is always good for a surprise, make sure you are well prepared for that!
    I will aks a friend, if he knows about good guiding services. If I can come up with something, I will send you an email.
    Take care…

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