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Heinz Zöldi at The Virtual Irish Fly Fair 2020

My name is Heinz Zöldi, I was born in 1978 and have been married happily for 15 years. I have two children: a 12 year old son that is also very interested in fishing and a 14 year old daughter that likes to tie flies with me. She is already very proud of her own tying vise! I am member of the Go-Fish Experts where I develop fly tying tools and tying materials and I´m part of the Maier & Fazis Speed-Vise Team.

Salzburg is sorrounded by many beautiful lakes and creeks, which makes fishing very popular in this region. That includes fly-fishing. The primary fish are brown trout, rainbow trout and grayling, but also other fish, like pike or barbel, are caught with the fly in Austria. I have fished in many rivers and lakes in Austria, Germany and Slovenia. Creeks like Lammer, Koppentraun, Weisse Traun, Soca, Unec are just a few names.

I originally started fishing at age 6 and I can still can remember the first fish I caught on my own. It was a little perch, but big enough for taking it home and cooking it. It was delicious! I imagine all fishermen still think that their first fish was the best tasting one – I certainly think so. Back then my dad and I were fishing nearly every weekend which was a great time.

You may now wonder when and how I started tying flies. This is how it all started:

One day, I was a little boy,  I decided to make a fishing lure by my own. I wrapped some wool on a hook. And this was the day I started with fly tying. I wasn´t able to fish with a fly-rod at this time, but this wasn´t important for me, at this moment. I loved to make this kind of lures - and I tried to get better. At first it was hard. I had no vise and no tools and I had nobody else to train with. But I practiced and practiced and gradually became better.  Unfortunately I do not have any flies from this  time and it would be great to look back and see my progress from the start. So if you start with fly tying: Keep your first self tied flies.

On a Christmas evening shortly after my parents gave me a fly tying starter kit, and a book with many patterns. But the kit did not contain intructions about how to use the tools, start or finish a fly. So I tied some really strange and funny looking flies, without the tools I got. I tried to get some dubbing on my thread and fixed some feathers on the hook, but this is how I started.

In the 1990´s I was fishing in Slovenia many times. These were really nice fishing trips with my father, who is an ethusiastic fly-fisher! During one fishing trip in Slovenia, I think it was in 1991, I learned the basics of fly tying, and was infected with the virus. All the rest was learning by doing and making a lot of mistakes too. For the younger readers and fly tyers: There was no Internet!! Just the fight man versus fly...

I´ve started to tie big flies and streamers and during the years they got smaller and better. Today I think it´s easier to learn several techniques, because of the internet, and it´s possible to become a great fly tyer in two or three years. One day, I saw a realistic nymph in a magazin and I thouht : „I must tie a fly like this!“.I started to tie and after a few tries, I made my first realistic looking fly. I tried a lot and was never satisfied how the flies turned out.

I should note that I am never satisfied with my flies.I always try to improve myself. When I look at a fly, I´ve tied 2 years ago, I always  have to grin a little bit. For me fly tying is a kind of art. We live in a time, nearly everyone is called an artist, when he´s able to hold a brush or a pencil in his hands. So I think it´s ok to call fly tying as art.


Email: h.zoeldi@ymail.com

Easy CDC-Fly #14 by Heinz Zöldi

Heinz Zöldi at The Virtual Irish Fly Fair 2020 Heinz Zöldi at The Virtual Irish Fly Fair 2020 Heinz Zöldi at The Virtual Irish Fly Fair 2020

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