Meet Conway Bowman- Howler Tribe Ambassador

Posted on September 29, 2011

Howler Brand Ambassador Conway Bowman is a regular Thomas Jefferson of the aquatic life.   He’s a fly fishing guide, surfer, television host, author, father, brand rep and conservationist.  Conway makes his home in San Diego and runs Bowman Bluewater, a charter fishing service specializing in targeting Mako sharks with fly rods.   He has hosted ESPN shows like “In Search of Flywater” and is a noted pioneer and advocate of catch and release fishing.  Cats like Conway fully embody what we love here at Howler Brothers so we’re pumped to have him on the team.  We caught up with him at the recent International Fly Tackle Dealers show in New Orleans and picked his brain on a few topics.   Check them out below:

You find yourself in Baja and you know that Cabo Polmo is firing, head high and clean.  But roosterfish are swarming the beaches as well.  You only have two hours, do you surf or fish? That's a tough one....let's see.  If it is over head and top to bottom tube I'd have to say "surf while I can get it" but, if the roosters are thick, chasing mullet on the beach and the conditions are right (not over head surf) I'm on the roosters all day long.

Why do you think a culture similar to surf and skate culture is emerging in fly fishing? Both sports and the guys a gals who participate in them are into the adventure of getting away from the day to day grind and finding adventure.  Both sports parallel fly fishing because fly fishing is a soulful trip where ever you choose to do it.  Currently, there is a noticeable shift away from the status trip in fly fishing with the elite crowd and movement towards the more adventure/soul crowd.  It’s refreshing to see some dude in surf trunks, Converse high tops and an old vintage 70's Fenwick fiberglass 12 wt casting to tarpon and out fishing the in crowd!  I love that.  That's cool stuff.

No kidding, what’s the highest you’ve seen one of those Makos jump when hooked up to a fly rod? I've see a Mako clear the water twenty feet straight up as it was cartwheeling across the bow of my boat.  No joke, the Mako is an unreal fish to catch on the fly and they jump higher and are faster then any other fish in the ocean!

How in the hell did you get into fly fishing for Makos anyway? Living in San Diego the nearest trout stream to me is 6 hrs north.  However the ocean has always been steps from where I live and grew up, so the salt water and Mako sharks were the closest fish I had to target with the fly.

My pops and I would spend our summers in Idaho, so that's where I got into fly fishing at the age of 6.  I was fishing Silver Creek and Henry's Fork...back in the early to mid 70's.  That’s where I got my fly fishing chops down.  Then we would return to San Diego in the winter (my dad was a school teacher) and I would then target bass and pan fish eventually moving to the saltwater with the fly and ultimately the Mako shark.

Fill in the blank.  Sharks are misunderstood because…of the movie Jaws! Worst thing to happen to sharks.

You share a first name with 70’s country music icon, Conway Twitty (see above).   Since we know you don’t wear your hair like him, do you take any other cues from him like wearing white sequined jump suits, sporting gold medallions on the outside of a turtle neck or singing songs full of sexual innuendo into long, skinny, “Price is Right” style microphones? Conway Twitty has been a big part of my life from the day I was born.  In most cases by default.  Throughout my life people ask my name and when they hear " Conway" they say 99% of the time…."Conway Twitty"?  But, to he honest that dude wrote/sang some cool tunes and his hair was insane- plus that Bob Barker microphone and crazy  bling that cat wore was awesome.  Now that's coming from a guy (me) who is bald and does not wear any gold, but nonetheless his stuff was tight.  I loved the hillbilly slide guitar stuff that ran through some of his tunes.  I love the tune "Louisiana Woman” and "It's Only Make Believe" those are great tunes that I think were #1's on the charts.  In fact, in college I played drums and filled in on some county gigs.  And yes, we played lots of Conway Twitty.

Most saltwater guides feel the gravitational pull of Florida.  You’re staying put in California because…the waves are bigger....

Insert shameless plug for Howler here…The coolest, hippest shit out there for the surf/fly fishing crowd. Howler totally gets "IT"! They capture the lifestyle of the next generation adventure!!