FRANKLIN COUNTY – The combined smoke from an estimated 86 wildfires from Washington and Oregan into California and Colorado and surrounding states had most of the U.S. seeing a milky white haze to what would normally be blue skies Tuesday.
The smoke was able to travel east and over such a large area thanks to the jet stream, a fast-moving river of air around 30,000 feet above sea level.
Since the smoke was confined to the upper levels of the atmosphere locally, no air quality concerns exist.
An upcoming storm system, typical of the La Nina weather pattern developing will make the Pacific Northwest trend wetter with time. But in many communities, the damage is already done.