Distribution of wildfire smoke in the United States and Canada, July 3, 2015. NOAA. The red dots represent the location of wildfires.
Smoke from wildfires in Canada has been migrating into large sections of the United States for several days, and that trend continues today. Even in, for example, southwest South Dakota my view of the Seven Sisters is degraded by particulates from those fires. A couple of days ago quite a number of people searching on the Internet for “fire Rapid City” or “fire Black Hills”, ended up on Wildfire Today, thinking there was a wildfire nearby.
To be fair to Canada, some of the smoke in the U.S., but a comparatively small amount, is coming from fires in Washington and Oregon.
Wildfire Smoke Forecast for 5 p.m. MT, July 3, 2015. NOAA.
Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches are in the forecasts for some areas in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho on Friday and Saturday for gusty winds and low relative humidities.
—Washington: Red Flag Warning from 3 p.m. Friday until 8 p.m. Saturday.
—Oregon: Red Flag Warning from noon Saturday until 8 p.m. Saturday.
—Idaho: Fire Weather Watch from Saturday morning through Saturday evening.
The map was current as of 8:30 a.m. MDT on Friday. Red Flag Warnings can change throughout the day as the National Weather Service offices around the country update and revise their forecasts and maps. For the most current data visit this NWS site or this NWS site.
The map, produced by Predictive Services at the National Interagency Fire Center, shows the location of lighting that was detected during the 24 hours ending at 6 a.m. MT, July 2, 2015.
Wildfire smoke forecast for 4 p.m. MT July 2, 2015.
These two images show the distribution of smoke from wildfires. Most of what residents in the United States will see and smell today is coming from fires in Canada, but wildfires in Washington and Oregon are also contributing to the haze, but in comparatively small amounts.
The image above is a forecast for smoke at 4 p.m. MT, July 2, 2015. Below is a “smoke analysis” for July 2, 2015, produced by NOAA. The red dots represent the location of wildfires.
Wildfire smoke analysis July 2, 2015. The red dots represent the location of wildfires. NOAA. (click to enlarge)
Mark Finan is the KCRA-TV Chief Meteorologist, based in Sacramento, California.
3-D map of the Sleepy Hollow Fire in Wenatchee, Washington, looking west, 1 a.m. PT, June 30, 2015. Note the spot fire near the river that is 1.2 miles east of the main fire. (click to enlarge)
The map above is a 3-D rendering of the perimeter of the Sleepy Hollow Fire that burned into Wenatchee in central Washington Sunday, June 28. The map is looking west, and was produced after a mapping flight at 1 a.m. PT, July 1. The fire burned 24 residences and several commercial structures.
One interesting thing is the spot fire that caused several businesses to burn near the river 1.2 miles away from the main fire. It is believed that a burning ember landed in some bales of cardboard that were to be recycled. While firefighters were engaged miles away trying to save homes, the fire spread from the cardboard to several nearby commercial structures, some of which were warehouses and fruit packing plants. Monday morning, June 29, smoke was still coming from the facilities of Michelsen Packaging Company, Northwest Wholesale, and Blue Bird Inc.
This is not unheard of, for a burning ember to travel that far and ignite a new fire, and has happened over greater distances. A recent example was on the King Fire in northern California in 2014, where a spot fire occurred 2 miles in front of the main fire.
More information about the Sleepy Hollow Fire on Wildfire Today.