Conway Bowman’s name is synonymous with "extreme" fly fishing. Whether he’s chasing Mako sharks with a fly rod on his home waters off San Diego California, slogging through the jungles of Thailand for Mahseer, 4x4’ing the coast of Baja in search of giant rooster fish or dodging reef sharks to sight cast at the legendary giant trevally on Christmas Island, Conway tends to take the less traveled fly fishing path.
Born and raised in San Diego, Conway has spent the better part of his years exploring and fishing every body of water in the West, both fresh and salt. With fishing rod in hand by the age of 6 Conway was hooking fish before he could read. Under the guidance of his father John Bowman, young Conway spent his summers in Stanley, Idaho where he developed his fly fishing skills on Silver Creek, Henry’s Fork and other famous trout streams. In the early 1990s, he discovered the thrill of saltwater fly fishing after catching his first saltwater fish on the fly, a 6-pound calico bass.
This inspired Conway to buy his first boat, a 16 foot aluminum skiff, in which he plied San Diego’s near shore and offshore waters looking for the elusive Mako shark. Conway was the first fly angler to pursue these great game fish on the fly and is considered the "God Father" of this world renowned fishery!
A passion for excitement and love of fishing inspired Conway to become a guide and currently, is one of, if not the, most sought after saltwater/adventure fishing guide on the West coast.
These days, when he’s not hoping on a plane on his next fishing/TV adventure, he still takes anglers offshore in search of the thrilling Mako shark on the fly or travels into Baja searching for roosterfish.
Conway’s exploits have been chronicled in various books which include Tidelines, Fly Fishing for Sharks: an American Journey, 50 Places to Fly Fish Before You Die, Fly Fishing Day Dreams and magazines including, Field & Stream, Men’s Journal, Salt Water Sportsman, and Wild on the Fly. Conway is also the author of Orvis’ Saltwater Fly Fishing: 101 Tips for the Absolute Beginner and is the fly fishing columnist for the national edition of the Coastal Anger magazine.
Conway has been a TV host since 2003. He’s a natural in front of the camera which, combined with his skills as a fisherman make him one of the most sought after fishing TV hosts. His handsome good looks attract both male and female viewers and Conway is extremely comfortable as a host. This is obvious from his stand ups as well as his interviews of other guests. He has well over a decade of experience doing on-screen stand-ups as well as voice over work. Conway’s list of television shows includes (in chronological order):
- In Search of Fly Water (ESPN)
- Dollar Wise Fly (NBC)
- Pursuing the Catch (World Fishing Network [WFN])
- Fly Fishing the World (Sportsman Channel)
- The Outfitters presented by Ford Trucks (Sportsman Channel)
- 50 Places to Fly Fish Before You Die (WFN)
- World Fishing Journal (WFN)
Other interesting Con-facts:
Conway currently holds the IGFA world record for redfish caught on the fly. He is also the owner of the "Conway Bowman Fly Fishing School" and Bowman Bluewater Guides and Outfitters, Southern California’s premier salt water fly fishing guide service. Conway is dedicated to raising awareness and funding for research, tagging and conservation of the shortfin mako shark off Southern California. To raise funds for mako shark research Conway hosts/producer of the Flying Mako Tournament, the nations first catch and release only shark fly fishing tournament. The tournament has been put on hold while he travels for his television shows. Conway also lectures extensively about makos shark conservation throughout the US.
Conway enjoys participating regularly in trade shows, doing radio and podcast shows and is in high demand for making appearances at fly shops and fishing clubs across the country throughout the year. He specializes in educational lectures about fly fishing. The trade show venues he has taken part in include:
- International Sportsmen’s Expo - San Jose, Phoenix, Denver
- Fred Hall, Fishing Tackle, Boat & Travel Show - San Diego, Long Beach
- The Fly Fishing show - California, Colorado, New Jersey
- iCAST - Florida, Las Vegas, Reno
- Fly Tackle Retailer Show - Denver
Conway currently resides in Encinitas, a cozy beach town 30 minutes north of downtown San Diego. He lives there with his wife Michelle and sons Maximilian and Jackson