Monday, July 20, 2009

Eastern Washington Smoke


Today I flew to Cape Cod for a meeting on moving weather research to operations. I ALWAYS get a window seat. As we crossed the Cascades I was stunned on how murky it looked....there was clearly lots of smoke and it was pushed up against the eastern slopes of the Cascades.

Take a look at this satellite picture from this morning....there is a significant fire in southern BC and the smoke plume is heading south (see red arrow). Can you see the smoke entering eastern Washington?

You will also notice the extensive low clouds along the coast and the tendrils almost reaching the south Sound. Later on during the day the smoke plume was less distinct..the vertical mixing due to surface heating helps diffuse the smoke in the vertical.

There are going to be a lot more fires. In contrast, the people I talked to today here in New England were complaining about their cold, dreary summer.

13 comments:

low cost auto insurance said...

I never thought that Washington had smoke, unless a volcano erupted. We had the joy of biking down a volcano on Maui this summer. That was very cool.

mainstreeter said...

I remember during 1970 a summer in eastern Washington, the sun was blood red for a couple of evenings. It was from a major complex fire in the Wenatchee forest.

Michael said...

In the late summer of '91, I went down to the Columbia Gorge ( past Camas ) and watched the Oregon side burning at night...very eerie

I also flew over Montana during forest fires in the late '90s , we were at 10,000' and the smell was still horrible

Michael said...

Prof. Mass, any thoughts on the hot summer we're having? We seem to be experiencing sustained periods of above average temperatures vs. the 1-3 days of hot weather with cool down. I am glad the forecasts are being revised downward this weekend, although the spread between sites such as wunderground, accuweather, and yahoo's service seems to be 10 degrees.

mainstreeter said...

The portland tv prognosticators are actually revising the amount of warm up this weekend. They are saying 100 is not likely, mid 90's. Still hot.

Weather Is My Life said...

The Northeast is having a lovely summer! I wish there was a way to reverse the roles and send them this awful and dreary stuff we've experienced so they might be happy. In my experience in the Northeast, the people who live there complain about everything, so maybe not.

cornbread said...

Weather is my life - Please consider moving east, you would be in like company amongst chronic complainers.

I think the weather has been faboulous this summer, and I like real "dreary" weather (ie not sun) in the fall and winter as well.

Weather Is My Life said...

Cliff, did any of the people at your meeting who are into weather complain about the conditions there this summer?

Weather Is My Life said...

cornbread, I disliked the Northeast because that's all they did. I thought it was different here, and for a lot of things it is. But unfortunately, it seems there's still lots of complaining any time there is weather going on here. I don't complain about the weather, I complain about people complaining about weather. There's a big difference. :)

Chris said...

No wonder it was so hazy yesterday! (I am in Eburg)

mainstreeter said...

I was in New England in 2006 when the temps were in the 90's. Almost like our nice weather today.

andycottle said...

Hey Cliff, like you, I to always want to have the window seat cause I like to see what is below me and sometimes it can be interesting. Even flying over your own house is nice.

Tea Time Consultants said...

Cliff, smoke from the fires are a problem when dealing with visibilty. As a pilot, I have came across other pilots from the Latin American countries and they really have a problem with VFR flying due to all the uncontrolled burning.