Western U.S. Wildfire Smoke Still Affecting Southeast Minnesota
Things still look to be a little hazy here in Minnesota, and the reason is those raging wildfires in the western U.S. and Pacific Northwest.
A few weeks ago, when there weren't quite as many wildfires burning uncontrollably in parts of California, folks around our neck of the woods here in southeast Minnesota noticed how we were experiencing several brilliantly-colored sunrises and sunsets.
The cause, of course, was the smoke from those fires that had drifted up into the atmosphere and was creating a filter, of sorts, that was creating some vivid orange and pink-colored sunsets. (It's the same phenomenon you might have seen in pictures from parts of the San Francisco Bay area of northern California, where the sky looked apocalyptically dark and orange.)
Now, though, we've been noticing the effects of those raging fires not just during some brilliantly-colored sunsets here in Minnesota. All that smoke has given even our morning, midday and afternoon sun a hazy effect to it as of late-- a trend that looks to continue through this week.
According to ABC-6 Chief Meteorologist Chris Kuball, the current pattern of the jet stream isn't set to change for the next few days, meaning all that smoke is still headed our way and the resulting haziness should continue here across southern Minnesota. Paul Huttner, Chief Meteorologist at MPR, said "massive smoke plumes from nearly a hundred western wildfires now stretch from coast to coast across the U.S. Some of the thickest smoke plumes aloft blew right over Minnesota Monday," he noted.
Interestingly, though, all that smoke is high enough up in the atmosphere that it won't affect our air quality-- and we won't notice that distinctive (and in this case, tragic) smell of a fire, either. (I usually like the smell of a fire, but seeing as nearly a million acres have been burned by these wildfires already, it's not anything one ought to like anyway, is it?)