Lockdown: and free fly tying instruction.

Well here we are in the midst of the biggest health and economic crisis in memory and there is very little that we can really do about it except shut the doors and get on with life as best we can.

Many readers of this blog will know that I was hospitalised and on a ventilator last year as a result of N1H1 swine flu pneumonia, followed by a variety of nasty bugs which were picked up as a direct result of the hospitalisation and ventilation. It very nearly killed me and one imagines was much the same as the more serious consequences for some people contracting Coronavirus (Covid 19)

So with that in mind don’t imagine for one moment that I don’t take this stuff seriously because I very much do.

This is me last June after two weeks in ICU and four weeks in hospital as a result of NIH1 swine flue pneumonia,
I lost 20 kilos and darn near my life, I want everyone to know that I take this shit seriously..


That said, in South Africa we are about to head into a period of lock down and I know that many of you will be facing similar situations wherever you live. So what to do?

There isn’t much one can do, there isn’t much I can do, but one thing that I thought could help me to keep sane and perhaps you too, is to try to make some lemonade from all these lemons.

So for the foreseeable future I am going to try to run some fly tying instruction on line via my blog opening up various instructions and video links from my two books “Essential Fly Tying Techniques” and “Guide Flies”

Most of the content is going to come directly from those books, but previously the videos were not directly available to the public. So I have decided to open them up at no cost to anyone and perhaps help to ward off the “shack nasties” and John Gierach would refer to them.  The idea is that  you can practice some fly tying techniques and perhaps tie some flies whilst you are stuck at home.

From Thursday I am going to start publishing short exercises and video clips which cover a variety of fly tying techniques both for the novice and the more accomplished.

The aim will be to cover a few basic things for beginners and tying an actual fly for the more experienced, don’t forget to pass on the link to your mates, would be quite nice to have a community of novice and experienced fly tyers around the world learning and sharing during these difficult times.

So I will try to put in a few basic fly tying techniques in graphic and video format each day for the novices

And instruction and video on a fly a day too for the more experienced.


There are going to be thousands of people sitting at home and potentially bored and for that matter worried, hopefully this may provide some of you with a worthwhile project to take your minds off stuff and even end up with a really great fly box or two for the coming season once we are all allowed out to cast a line again.

Please do feel free to share the information with anyone you think may enjoy or benefit from it. There are no costs involved, I am making all of this information and the videos available for free. There will be links to the books but this isn’t a sales operation, and you don’t need to purchase anything to participate.

It would be nice to hear back from you via comments, help us all feel a little more connected whist we are in isolation..

Bear in mind that there should be no need to follow the various tutorials in any particular order, although if you are a novice I do suggest that you try to do with the initial instructions, it will help later on.

In 21 days time it would be great if you shared your “new flies and fly boxes” with me so that we can put them out there on social media for everyone to see.


Most of the content coming over the next three weeks will come from these two e books. You are under no obligation to purchase anything. If you can’t wait to carry on and wish to purchase an eBook copy on line you can do so via the links above.

Further should you wish to do so, you can use these codes (or pass them on to your mates) to get the books at a 50% discount

Discount code Essential Fly Tying Techniques: DR62J Code will expire 17 April 2020

Discount code Guide Flies : SB94S Code will expire 17 April 2020


If you need any further assistance you are most welcome to comment or mail me at rolston@iafrica.com

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2 Responses to “Lockdown”

  1. Koort Pretorius Says:

    Baie Goed beliggaam Tim Rolston. Holisties gesproke is dit die regte dinamika om die status quo te behou tydens hierdie periode van self isolasie. Onthou net die Baber is n Snorbaard

  2. Paul Kenyon Says:

    Thanks Tim, I shared this across our 3 Facebook pages with this introduction: “Here’s a generous offer from our friend Tim Rolston​ in South Africa. I know at least one person, previously “time poor” now “locked-down” who would benefit from this, let me know if you need a fly-tying vice to get started – I have a spare, and an abundance of pheasant tails (thanks Nicky), thread etc.”

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