Hazy Okanagan Lake

After our time under the “heat dome” where our temperatures reached into the mid-to-high C40s, we have finally cooled down to the more usual, which is about low-to-mid 30s for this time of year.

After all that extreme heat and only very minimal precipitation, moisture conditions are dire and fires are developing everywhere. Currently, there are 180 fires in British Columbia, 12 of which are a potential threat to safety. Additionally, the smoke and heat from these fires are combining to create a separate weather system that has lead to huge vertical smoke clouds with their own lightening bolts and fire tornadoes.

A smoke-hazy Okanagan Lake from Saturday.

One fire has already consumed the majority of a small town, Lytton, which became famous for breaking temperature records in Canada for three days in a row. Before 90% of it was destroyed late last week by a swiftly-moving fire, it recorded a temperature of 49.5°C (121°F).

There are no fires in our immediate vicinity, but there is smoke.

Clear views from a nearby location a year ago.

I hope that we get some rain soon and the firefighters are able to get these fires under control, but this will likely be just a temporary fix. Climate scientists have indicated that we should start expecting much more of this in the seasons to come.

23 thoughts on “Hazy Okanagan Lake”

  1. Keep safe, Lynette. It’s so very sad that it has had to come to this for people in general to start to recognise the reality that is the climate emergency. Whether it will make any difference to lifestyles or to Government and commercial decisions, of course, is another matter. It’s one thing to know about something, doing something about it is an entirely different thing. We can but hope.

    1. Thank you. It is sad, and there are many people doing their best to change their lifestyles, but the biggest offenders have much more of an impact, and gov’t has to rein them in. Yes, we have to keep hoping though.

      1. And we can continue to spread the truth about the climate emergency, Lynette, in the hope of educating more and more people. But I fear greed, complacency, and stupidity will win the day in the end. And I speak as a lifetime optimist!

  2. Very worrying. We are in severe drought conditions here as well and after the heat dome passed, we only got about 2 mm of rain. The ground is starting to crack and fires are on the increase here too. Any rain in the forecast comes with severe weather warnings and lightning, a double edged sword. Stay well Lynette and lets all do a rain dance. Allan

    1. Yikes, I didn’t realise that you are experiencing drought as well, although that heat wave is sucking out every drop of moisture, so it’s really not a surprise. Yes, my experience flying in that area is that summer rain frequently arrives in the shape of towering cumulonimbus clouds, lightening and potential tornadoes. Stay safe, Allan.

  3. I hope it has ended by now, as I read your post. California is a desert (where I live) but it’s temps have been moderate and comfortable. August/September is our hot time.

    1. Yes, we are back to more normal temperatures now; the “heat dome” has moved east. There just hasn’t been any rain and all that heat dried everything out. We’re hoping for a nice rainfall …

  4. Out-of-control wildfires are a terrifying thing if you are in its path. It’s hard enough to deal with the smoke in the surrounding area. I can’t even bear to think of all the creatures that die in these fires. I’m glad the temperatures are coming down a bit. That’s not to say we couldn’t be in for another heat wave later in the summer. Hope it’s not too bad.

    1. I’ve been thinking about all the animals, too. The loss has to be huge. It’s such a relief to see these temperatures come down but now we need a good non-lightening rainfall. Yes, we could be in for another one; I hope not, though!

    1. Thank you. We’re fortunate in that climate change denial is definitely a minority thing here. The issue is to get the message across to our governments that they need to do better (instead of pander to the worst offenders and fixate on re-election). The further problem is that our PM lacks a backbone and we have decidedly weak alternatives (we have an election coming up) before us …

    1. Yes, all the climate scientists here are saying that this latest crazy heat wave we just had is a symptom of climate warming and that more is coming. It’s up to us to pressure our gov’ts to enact real environmental protections and for us to personally change our bad habits. We also don’t need any more growth; we need to figure out maintenance, since human activity (and the use of fossil fuels and plastics in many of those activities) is an enormous culprit.

      1. Yeah, it’s kind of happening in many parts of the world. And it’s possible it will soon get to hot to live normally and we’ll have to create new ways for existing. Perhaps global warming is a natural thing of the planet but we sure have sped that up a lot and it’s very dangerous. We need more clean energy and fast. Plus, we need to do some of these things to heal the planet before it’s too late for us and the ecosystem as we know it!

  5. Sorry to hear that you went from extreme heat to fire. I had no idea there was such a thing as a fire tornado and that the fires themselves can create a separate weather system. That’s wild. Stay safe.

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