Craig Mathews holds a BS with honors from Michigan State University. He went for post grad study there in education and criminal justice while working in law enforcement. He and his wife Jackie came to West Yellowstone in 1979 from Grand Rapids, Mi. Craig was the Town’s Police Chief. In 1979 they founded Blue Ribbon Flies.
Craig and Jackie have won numerous conservation awards for their environmental work such as “The Protector of Yellowstone National Park Award” presented by Yellowstone National Park, both The Nature Conservancy and Greater Yellowstone Coalition’s coveted “Business Conservation of the Year” awards, The Federation of Fly Fishers “Lee Wulff Award” and few years later the Federation of Fly Fishers International presented them the “Frank and Jeanne Moore Award” for their conservation and environmental work. Craig was Fly Rod and Reel Magazine’s
“2005 World Angler of the Year”. In 2009 they were presented the Madison River Foundation’s “Guardian of the Madison” and Trout Unlimited awarded them their “Stream Champion” honor in 2011 for their ongoing national conservation work.
Craig has authored and co-authored 9 important books on fishing. His latest, “Simple Fly-Fishing with Tenkara” was released in April 2014 and co-authored with Patagonia Inc. founder, Yvon Chouinard and Mauro Mazzo. The book has won 2 prestigious awards, the Banff Mountain Guidebook of the Year and the National Outdoor Book Award for a guidebook and instructional quality. In 2018 the book was revised into a second edition and released again in Nov 2018. In 2019 Craig revised “The Yellowstone Fly-Fishing Guide”, first published in 1996, which will be released in summer 2019.