Marlinspike Skills Weekend
March 7-9, 2008

For the fourth year in a row I traveled to Camp Belzer in Indianapolis, IN for a weekend of adult scout leader knot tying training. This year I would be attending the "Marlinspike II" class. I had started the same course last year but my trip was cut short by sudden illness and hospitalization. So I came back to take care of unfinished business. Whereas the basics course focuses on more practical knots and uses primarily manilla ropes, the "Marlinspike II" course focuses on more ornate knots and uses nylon ropes to create decorative lanyards. Both courses are highly recommended. For more information see See also 2005 photos and 2007 photos.

Paul Zimmermann -- Marlinspike staff.

My sister Lily and my new friend Barz. Lily flew in from southern California and Barz flew in from Denver.

Never a shortage of food at Marlinspike!

"The other Bill"


The Illinois contingent.


Lily and the other Bill

Course director Gary Summers is responsible for a whole lot of scouters knowing a whole lot more about knot tying.

Paul demos the diamond knot.

Practice projects in the Marlinspike Skills II course.

I very much enjoyed meeting the other Bill. Nice guy.

A few shots of the Marlinspike I class.

A little downtime.

Ocean plait knot: a perennial favorite.

My sister Lily is an extremely talented knotter and tatter.

Marlinspike II students make pretzel knots for the Saturday evening cracker barrel. Lots of fun!

God bless the quartermaster!

Is Gary smiling because of another successful weekend of knot instruction, or because of his recent decision to retire? Congratulations on both, Gary!

Marlinspike I participants and staff.

Marlinspike II participants and staff.

Members of the International Guild of Knot Tyers. Gary suggested that this might be the largest gathering ever of IGKT members in Indiana.


Showing the Marlinspike II class project: a knife lanyard with three-strand braid, double Matthew Walker knot, 6 strand herringbone, 6 strand flat sennet, manrope knot, and star knot button.

A satisfied learner for four years in a row.

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Copyright © 2008 by Bill Qualls. Last updated March 15, 2008.