Title: The Miracle Fire
Location & Date: Medicine Lake, Jasper National Park | 2015
Camera Set-Up: Nikon D800 w/ 200-400 @ 400mm
Shutter Speed: 1/250th
In 2015, an early spring and a long, hot dry summer created some of the most favourable conditions for wildfires in the history of Jasper National Park. So it was no surprise to anyone when a massive blaze burned most of the forest surrounding the road to Maligne Lake, including the Medicine Lake area, but what was a surprise was that it was the miracle fire. You see, one particular snag on the shores of Medicine Lake has long been home to a bald eagle nest and when the fire ripped along the lake’s edge, many were worried that it wouldn’t spare the fate of the fledglings. Indeed, the concern was valid, as the fire reached the tree and started burning its way up the snag. And then came the miracle. It stopped. The fire stopped two-thirds of the way up the tree and receded, never touching the nest. The eagle family was all healthy and accounted for by the time we reached Jasper a few weeks later and though the damage caused by the wildfire was shocking, it paled compared to the mercy it showed to this beloved family of eagles.