International photographers just held a RAVE in B.C.’s threatened Flathead River Valley — and no, it was not a midnight ’90s trance dance with neon necklaces.

These award-winning professionals held a Rapid Assessment Visual Expedition. They fanned out over the Flathead for 10 days to create a visual portrait of this majestic remote valley.

The point was to show the beauty of this living landscape. Their stunning pictures make the industrial threats to this wonderland all the more heartbreaking. If mining companies planned to do to your backyard what they plan to do to the Flathead, you’d likely be irate. And your backyard probably doesn’t have the natural beauty or wildlife and ecosystem values of the valley.

So this hardy group of concerned photographers are challenging us to think of the Flathead Valley — a conservation hotspot with an impressive mix of wildflowers — as our backyard. They braved the densest population of interior grizzly bears on the continent to create a library of images for conservation.

 

Kudos to this International League of Conservation Photographers for choosing B.C.’s Flathead as their first Canadian RAVE and donating these powerful images to such a worthy cause.

The Flathead is right beside the world’s first Peace Park (Waterton-Glacier International). Alberta and Montana have done their share to protect this amazing ecosystem, but B.C. is lagging badly — the environmental threats to the Peace Park from B.C. just led UNESCO to instigate a fact-finding mission.

It’s time to protect the remarkable Flathead Valley in B.C.’s backyard, which lures these National Geographic-calibre photographers. So gaze at the picture on this page, get to know the Flathead Valley and give yourself a chance to fall in love.