There is so much smoke from the Wallow wildfire in Arizona that you can clearly see it from outer space in this NASA image.
This picture was taken on June 9, 2011 as the fire’s total hit 400,000 acres–but on June 13, 2011, the Wallow fire become Arizona’s largest wildfire on record. The total hit 469,407 acres (1,900 square kilometers or 733 square miles). It’s now bigger than Arizona’s previous record fire the Rodeo-Chediski fire back in 2002.
Arizona Wildfire Smoke Blown Into Mid-west, Northeast
Now, check out this new image of that smoke plume, carried east and north by winds higher in the atmosphere.
In this case, you see huge area of hazy smoke over Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska.
This smoke is continuing on its journey, travelling across Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and even all the way up into Canada. The particles of this smoke plume will get smaller and smaller the greater distance they travel from the fire. But they’re going to make for some awesome sunsets across much of North America as the smoke particles act like a filter to change the colors we see.
Three Very Interesting Things I’ve Learned About This Massive Arizona Wildfire
- Forest managers in that area say there are indications that some of the fires burning in this area grew to one million acres long ago. Something to keep in mind as this fire continues to grow.
- New research from Northern Arizona University suggests wildfires may cause soils to quickly release large amounts of a certain greenhouse gas that could potentially speed up climate change.
- Some researchers are blaming this massive Arizona wildfire on overgrown forests.
In the northwest, there’s some good news on the wildfire front. Fire forecasters say the chances of a major wildfire in Oregon and Washington will remain below average until at least August because of a cool damp spring and an incredible snow pack.
We’ll see what happens after that.