The annual summer enjoyment of the long-awaited camping season, in tree-shaded campsites along pristine mountain lakes, at RV resorts in beautiful pine forests, and campfires under star-filled skies is being challenged by a plague of wildfires burning in the West.
Even if your camping location is relatively safe from the fires, the smoke resulting from weeks of continuous burning has not only made many areas of the West chokingly uncomfortable but is also spreading across the country.
The forecast model (above) from the National Weather Service shows how the smoke from the wildfires scorching California is traveling thousands of miles – all the way to New York City 3,000 miles away, reports CNN on Friday morning.
Firefighters continue to battle more than a dozen blazes in California, including the largest in the state’s history, the Mendocino Complex fire.
The smoke in the East currently is more than a mile above the surface. When it’s that high and stays there, the health risks are minimal, according to the weather service. But if it’s pulled down by the jet stream, it can cause unhealthy air quality.
In some cases, exposure to wildfire smoke can cause respiratory issues and symptoms similar to a sinus infection. Wildfires can also have effects on pollution, and some of these effects, scientists say, have been underestimated.