Don Dodge.

A living legend to some, the friendly old neighbor to others, and an elderly uncle to one, Don Dodge started exploring the Montana wilderness as a young tween. Arriving from Georgia with his family to Missoula in 1955, it wasn't long before Don started climbing Mount Jumbo right outside his front door, and he quickly embraced everything that Montana is known for: losing oneself in untouched wilderness with only your horses, some staples, and some hunting rifles.

Concurrent with his love of the outdoors, Don dove into the world of photography, converting his sisters bedroom into a darkroom as soon as she moved out of the house. It wasn't long before Don added large, medium and small format cameras into the tack lugged around by his horses.

From grass-roots


Ten years after moving to Missoula, Don made regular expeditions into the famed Bob Marshall Wilderness, one million acres of one of the best-preserved ecosystems in the world just south of Glacier National Park. Don would trek through the wilderness with his horses for weeks on end, some times with friends, some times completely alone. After discovering a medium-format Rolleiflex camera, he soon started bringing that along with him, attempting to capture Ansel Adams-esque images of the awesome beauty that surrounded him during these times.

A brief moment in time captured forever

Unbeknownst to Don, his time in the Bob -as well as Glacier National Park, the Bitterroot and Flathead National Forests, and others areas in western Montana- and the photos he took have become historic records of places that have been radically changed over the decades since. The glaciers are no longer there, forests have been ravaged by fire; what was once a deer trial is now swamped with human visitors. These images serve as a reminder of how things were for thousands of years until human activity changed them forever.

And then... he was done.

Then in the mid-80s, a new career installing satellite dishes (??) took over and Don stopped taking photos. His darkroom got turned into storage, and his cameras buried in his lifelong collection of stuff. He continued trekking in the wilderness -his last overnight adventure was in 2015 when he was in his 70s- but he didn't take a good camera.

His photos also got buried and forgotten. A small collection was signed, labeled and framed ready for a show, but that show wouldn't happen for another 40 years. Even more photos -as stunning as the ones he prepared- sit in a closet waiting to be sorted and displayed.

Modern Times

Don continues to live in that same house up the Rattlesnake in Missoula, Montana, and his first ever photo show occurred in May, 2023! Four times a week he treks into the wilderness, but now for hours at a time instead of weeks or days. He tends to his horses twice a day, but like him they do little more than chew on hay and gaze at the mountains. He's visited regularly by his sister, Carole, and his nephew and niece-in-law, who were kind enough to get this interweb thing going and find galleries to display his work.

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