Digital photograph of spot fires taken by Robin McDonald at her beef property at Rosewhite, in Happy Valley, north east Victoria in February-July 2009.

Robin and her husband David, have been farming on this property since 1963, and were directly affected by the 2009 February bushfires which started in the early hours of Sunday 8th February 2009.

This photograph is part of the Victorian Bushfires Collection and is supported by an oral and video interview undertaken with Robin and David McDonald.

Description of Content

Photograph taken from the McDonald's family garden looking north. Shows the first two spot fires that occurred in Happy Valley before the fire front arrived. Photograph taken at 1.40am Sunday 8th February. 'The glow of the fire front is seen from behind the hills on the left, coming from Carroll's Road, Mudgegonga. When the first spot fire started David McDonald and Nigel (his son) went to put it out but could not do so as the gate was locked (owned by absentee owner, Steven Paul). On returning to get a bolt cutter to cut the lock, a second spot fire had started (seen to the right) and so they then went to put that out in the adjacent paddock.' - Robin McDonald [Happy Valley resident, 19 August 2010].

Physical Description

Colour digital photograph


This collection of photographs contribute to understanding the experience of primary producers during the 2009 February bushfires. They particularly document the fires in north east Victoria, which were known as the Beechworth fires. These fires were responsible for the destruction of the greatest amount of public and private land in Victoria during the 2009 bushfires, and raise many issues and themes specific to the geographic nature of this area.

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