Fires on the US West Coast


Active member
Yes, covered earlier. Some place in CA recorded 121°F/49.4°C.

Death Valley Just Recorded the Hottest Temperature on Earth

Scientists still have to validate the reading of 130 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday
The equivalent of 54 degrees Celsius.

Source: The New York Times
Death Valley in Southern California is the hottest place on earth. At 3:41 p.m. on Sunday, it lived up to that reputation when the temperature at the aptly named Furnace Creek reached 130 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the NOAA Weather Prediction center.

If that reading — the equivalent of 54 degrees Celsius — is verified by climate scientists, a process that could take months, it would be the highest temperature ever reliably recorded on earth.

Death Valley is no stranger to heat. Sitting 282 feet below sea level in the Mojave Desert in southeastern California near the Nevada border, it is the lowest, driest and hottest location in the United States. It is sparsely populated, with just 576 residents, according to the most recent census.

Brandi Stewart, the spokeswoman for Death Valley National Park, said that the valley is so hot because of the configuration of its lower-than-sea-level basin and surrounding mountains. The superheated air gets trapped in a pocket and just circulates. “It’s like stepping into a convection oven every day in July and August,” she said.

So how does 130 degrees, which she walked out into on Sunday, feel? “It doesn’t feel that different from 125 degrees,” she said. “The feeling of that heat on my face, it can almost take your breath away.”

She added that “People say, ‘Oh, but it’s a dry heat!’ I want to do a little bit of an eye roll there,” she said. “Humidity has its downsides too, but dry heat is also not fun.”

She grew up in western Pennsylvania and her last posting with the park service was Mount Rainier National Park, one of the snowiest places on earth. “I’m ready for cooler temperatures,” she said.
Makes most tepid places here in Australia fit for Eskimos......

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Staff member
I was like a kid who couldn't sleep on Christmas Eve because I thought Santa was coming. The thunder and lightening got closer and closer, and then I could hear the air blowing through the leaves on nearby trees and then, finally, around midnight, rain. It came in downpours rather than sustained rain. This morning my neighborhood is drenched and more is forecast for throughout the day. The rain is going to help with firefighting in the mountains, although there are concerns about the rain causing debris flows or flash floods. The biggest fires are still only 10-20% contained, but the rain should help. Stepping outside this morning, the air quality looked a lot better. The sky still looks grey, but I can discern clouds in the sky rather than just the solid, featureless grey of smoke.



Staff member
It rained off and on throughout the day today. So refreshing! The rain and associated wind flow has really cleared things up a lot. Not completely, but a lot. We opened our windows for the first time in almost two weeks today. The weather forecast says the rain is over for now, but there will be more next Wednesday and Thursday. I don't mind the rainy climate here. It keeps things green and beautiful. But I don't think I've ever been so thankful and appreciative of it as I am now.


Head Honcho
Staff member
Yeah, I bet you are!
A new approach to managing forests is necessary. That said, really bad fires like here last summer will still be increasingly common.


New member
I saw blue sky in a break in the clouds. First time in almost 2 weeks.
Wow, that brings back memories of last January here. Not that i live all that close to where our fires were but the smoke was just horrible, you could taste it and there wasn't a room in the house you could move to to get away from it.
I remember how nice it was to see the blue sky eventually.
Hope things are improving for you every day.
2020 is shaping up as a dead loss of a year. Each new month I wonder what else is going to happen.


Staff member
A long time coworker and friend of mine is a police captain in a city near the fire zone helped patrol in the fire area and took these pictures yesterday.

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