Owning and operating Boulder Creek Saddle Shop is a second career for Charles Lamica. In his first career he served as an Alaska State Trooper for more than 22 years. Between 1981 and 2003 Charles worked in a variety of assignments and locations. He was a patrol trooper in Fairbanks, a “Bush Trooper” in a remote village, a staff instructor at the State Trooper Training Academy in Sitka, the State Wide Search And Rescue Coordinator, and the Deputy Commander at the Training Academy. He was a member of AST’s Special Emergency Response Team (SERT), a diver on AST’s Tactical Dive Team, a cadet leader for a Civil Air Patrol squadron, and a member of the Juneau Mountain Rescue team. During his career, Charles received four awards for Outstanding Trooper Of The Year, as well as awards for valor and meritorious service.
Charles was a Wilderness Survival Instructor for the Alaska State Troopers. His work teaching wilderness survival to Trooper Recruits has been documented on the History Channel and the National Geographic Channel.
Charles retired from the Alaska State Troopers in 2003 and moved to northeast Washington to be closer to his family. From 2012 through 2014 Charles worked as a Forest Warden with the Washington Department of Natural Resources.
Charles' training as a saddle maker began in 2007 when he met Bill Bacon, a saddle maker who lived near Kettle Falls, Washington. Bill was 82 years old at the time, and agreed to teach Charles how to make saddles. Charles spent three or four days a week, for five months, at Bill’s small log cabin saddle shop learning how to make good, sturdy, dependable saddles. Sadly, Bill Bacon has since passed away but Charles is proud to be able to carry on many of the skills and techniques he learned from Bill.
Boulder Creek Saddle Shop began as a small hobby in the basement of Charles’ home. The shop is named for the creek which flows through Charles’ property. For several years Charles made saddles, holsters, knife sheaths, chaps, and other gear for his friends and family. In 2015 he took the plunge and opened Boulder Creek Saddle Shop in Kettle Falls, Washington. The shop has undergone several changes since its opening but Charles' philosophy remains the same: Provide quality leather work at reasonable prices and treat everyone the way he would want to be treated.