This image was taken during the Bonner fire in fall of 2011, in East Missoula.
Wildfire in the west, and particularly in Montana, is a permanent landscape characteristic, and it is clearly not one to be reckoned with. Every year, Montanans struggle to deal appropriately with this natural phenomenon – sometimes making every effort to forestall its progression, and sometimes simply letting it go.
This shot, taken from the ground, captured a wildfire that came extremely close to many local homes in the eastern part of Missoula. The Bonner Fire of 2011 was one that created a great deal of angst for residents, as it took the cooperative effort – among several fire fighting branches and local volunteers – several days to contain the flames. Meanwhile, residents were forced to evacuate their homes in hope that they would remain intact amid the flames.