Book Review - Fishing Flies for Africa
A review of a most interesting book by Graham Marsden
Fishing Flies for Africa
By Bill Hansford-Steele
Over 800 full-colour Illustrations Published August 2009 by Struik Lifestyle
- Includes the histories, materials and fishing methods for over 800 different flies
- Detailed discussion of the history of fly-fishing and fly-tying development in Africa
- Beautiful, full-colour photographs of almost every fly listed
- Full of practical advice on tying techniques, dying of materials and fly-collecting
- A strong focus on sustainable, eco-friendly fly-tying and substituting natural materials
Fishing Flies for Africa is the first of its kind – a comprehensive, detailed reference guide to fishing flies for use in Africa. Bill Hansford-Steele has poured over two decades of research and a lifetime of experience into this book, sharing a wealth of experience and unparalleled enthusiasm on the subject.
Included in this title are over 800 flies of European, American, Australasian and South African origin. The origin and developmental history of each fly is discussed, as well as its dressing, any variations, and the appropriate method for fishing with it. Additional design and tying notes are included where applicable. Appropriate substitutes for rare or environmentally sensitive materials are listed – and Fishing Flies for Africa has a serious focus on ecologically friendly fly-fishing, with an entire chapter dedicated to natural materials and their substitutions.
The growing hobby of collecting flies also receives its own chapter, with useful advice on storage, framing and lighting options.
About the author -
Bill Hansford-Steele is a professional fly-fishing instructor with a lifetime of experience in fly-fishing and fly-tying. Originally from the UK, he has lived and fished in southern Africa for over 40 years and as a professional instructor has run fly fishing courses since 1980. He once held the all-African rainbow trout record, and has travelled and fished in most African countries and abroad. Bill Hansford-Steele is the author of African Fly-Fishing Handbook, Saltwater Flies for South African Waters and Freshwater Flies for South African Waters.
I can’t write about fishing in Africa as I’ve never been there, but I do know just enough about fly fishing and fly tying to recognise a good book on the subject when I read one, and this one by Bill Hansford-Steele is a good one, make no mistake.
Whether or not you intend to fly fish in Africa this book, Fishing Flies for Africa, will be a very valuable reference. It is stuffed full of excellent fly tying tips and patterns that will work anywhere, even on the little put-and-take trout fisheries that most UK anglers are used to. As I read through it and looked at the vast assortment of detailed pictures and tying instructions I found myself thinking: “That looks good, I’ll tie that one and give it a try on my next trip.” It may have been a fly that was recommended for a different water entirely from the ones where I fish, but you know that a certain pattern and colour combination will be good on certain waters, no matter where they were originally intended for.
But this is much more than a simple fly tying manual; it has a history of African fly fishing, a comprehensive range of tips on dying and components and a very interesting chapter on collecting and framing flies.
I can safely say that if you like fly fishing and fly tying you will like this book – even if you never intend to fish in Africa.
By the Same Author
- New Products from Zippo and a Review of the Zippo Hand Warmer
- Review - Polaroid’s Latest Sports Sunglasses
- Review - Squabs Shelf Life Bait Range
- Book Review - Fishing Flies for Africa
- Fishing for Pleasure
- Chilly on Carp, Five Part DVD from OnlineFishing.tv - Review
- Tactical Pike Fishing - A Review
- Has the Skill Gone Out of Fishing?
- The Fallacy of Slack Line Fishing
- Positive River Piking