A New Year has arrived, and the snow continues to fall at Tikchik. The cold air and falling flakes produce an alien silence. The lake is a static, unmoving mass that endures all. The rivers are slow and weary, and most of the creeks are just a trickle. It is the dark time in Bristol Bay. Fish are hunkered down in the deepest darkest holes unconsciously awaiting the perennial feeding frenzy of June.
In a cozy cabin in Montana, my mind wanders amid a crackling fire. A dim and misty backdrop arrives before me. White pillows are dramatically peeling off a lake in plumes of fog. The crisp air battles with the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. A loon calls out and soon after the cough, cough and roar of a de Havilland Beaver echoes across the narrows. The sun bores down on the dock, and the fog fades into blue sky. Suddenly, a scene of sharp greens, yellows, and browns flash – a vast tundra, stretching out over winding rivers. Sparkling blue lakes decorate the floor, and a tall crowd of peaks looks over the scene as if to be the fatherly caretakers of this wild painting – a panorama of fishing paradise.