We are pleased to have Charlie Craven be with us for this years Expo!
After mysteriously losing all of his dad’s lures in a single day, Charlie was fortunately gifted a fly tying kit by his parents for his eighth birthday. He’s tied flies pretty much every day for the forty years since then and has figured out a few things along the way. At this point it’s become well known that he’s opinionated, outspoken and sometimes brash when it comes to flies and techniques, however it’s also obvious that his passion lies in sharing the skills he’s developed.
Over the years, Charlie has been a prolific commercial fly tyer and, for a time, a pretty mediocre fishing guide. This was due to his insistence on liverwurst and onion lunch sandwiches instead of grilled prawns like all the other sissy guides. He’s also been an Umpqua Feather Merchants Signature Tyer for over 18 years, with several fly box mainstays like the Jujubaetis, Two Bit Hooker and Baby Gonga among his over two dozen commercially available patterns. All of Charlie’s experience finally culminated in 2004 with the opening of his own fly shop, Charlie’s Fly Box, in Arvada, Colorado, where he is the head book keeper, order taker and fry cook.
He’s written three books, Charlie Craven’s Basic Fly Tying, Charlie’s Fly Box and Tying Nymphs with plans for several more when he finally gets around to them… After beating Ross Purnell in a prolonged and brutal arm wrestling match, he became the Fly Tyer’s Bench columnist for Flyfisherman Magazine and still maintains this title to this day. He was recently named to that magazine’s 50 Most Influential People in Flyfishing, and it is thought that his number 45 ranking was specifically chosen to keep his head from growing any larger. Thus far, their ploy hasn’t worked.
Charlie lives in the hills of Palmer Lake, Colorado with his lucky, patient and loving wife, Lisa, their two gigantic dogs and somewhere between three and six young adult children. He still likes quiet time, the Parachute Adams, Colorado whiskey and dry-dropper fishing from a boat.
“It’s not simply enough that a fly catches fish, it has to do all that’s asked of it, well….and style matters”