The Bitterroots

Back in the late 1990’s, my father and I used to pour over maps and property magazines. The target? The Bitterroot Mountains south of Missoula, Montana. This had been a dream for quite some time.

But as the years passed, we never did end up buying property in the Bitterroot Mountains. Instead, I moved right into the middle of Missoula, within walking distance from everything I could need. And these days (thanks largely to climate change), the Bitterroots are a tinderbox, and seemingly always on fire during late summer and early fall.

What I learned is that perhaps we don’t always need to buy land or build right next to the greatest places. Maybe, just maybe knowing they’re near is good enough. As mankind pushes and roads the last roadless habiat, places like the Bitterroot will vanish. But for now, this spectacular wilderness complex exists relatively intact, as this bald eagle will attest to (left side of the image).

The Bitterroot Mountains Eagle

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