The Winter Steelheader

By April Vokey


With frosted edges and delicate tips, it landed on my nose before softening and disappearing into the warmth of my skin.

It was winter in western Canada and the trees were awaiting their new dress. They stood naked and bare, lining the secluded river bank, shivering in the wind and grasping for my back cast.

They, like me, were only moments away from the season’s first coating of fresh snow.

A light wind floated the flakes gently downstream and they lingered and danced in the air with each gust.

Evening had fast been approaching but the sudden snowfall lit the moody sky and I smiled at the extra thirty casts I may have just been gifted. I pulled up my hood, burrowed my chin into my fleece and watched the blood rush into my hands as I gripped my Spey rod firmly.

With a current that ran as smooth as melted butter, my confidence soared and my heart beat faster.