August in Montana

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This was a difficult month in Montana as we faced drought, high heat, and forest fires on both sides of town.  The Gibraltar Ridge fire was about 8 miles to the south and east of our house.  The West Kootenai fire was about 20 miles to the north and west.  We had serious air quality problems from the smoke and some people were evacuated from their homes, and 10 homes were lost on the West Kootenai.  It was a trying time but I loved the spirit of the people here, everyone pitched in to help and those affected kept up a good attitude.  
 Smoky sunrise.  You can look right at the sun when there's a lot of smoke. The Casazza cows, trying to see how many cows can cram into the small space 
between the fence and the tree.
Two of these motorized contraptions flew around overhead one day.   The early stages of a fire camp, or "Incident Command Post" in town. It was set up, grew large, 
was shut down, then reopened as the fires grew, retreated, and then suddenly doubled in size. 
 Apples on a tree along our favorite walking path through the woods near our house The Gibraltar fire on a calm day, as seen from our land.
 The cows would lick our sprinkler heads when they were running. It was a favorite activity, they jostled to be the one who could get their head through the fence. 
 Speaking of getting through the fence, this momma busted our gate and enjoyed some 
 grazing time in our yard before Dan & Tracie came to my rescue to help chase them out.
Full moon rising


 Two shots of the sun trying to shine through the smoke one morning.  

The sun was so weak it reflected in the water, just as a full moon would do.  The Casazza cows are very picturesque when they are further from my house.

Amazing sunset I saw from the yard one night

  Eric, making a start on our garden fence 


  We got one day of completely clear skies.  We had to celebrate with a long walk where I took a lot of pictures. 

 Squirrel, reading us the riot act along one of our walks We like to share apples with the neighbor's horses and mule along our evening walk
Here they are, farting loudly and wondering why we don't bring more apples We got to walk pretty close to an owl in a tree but the pictures were too dark 
to see him.  You can only see him in this one where he flew away. 
 My man with clear skies behind him A look at some of the parts of the Gibraltar fire that had burnt at that point.  It got bigger again later. 
We kept seeing this raven (on the left of the deer) that couldn't fly.  It would hop around,
covering great distances.  It must be a very smart bird to survive that long without flight. 

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