A total of 74 wildfires are currently blazing in the western United States, several swiftly making their way towards highly populated cities such as Portland, Seattle, Sacramento, and Los Angeles. Air quality warnings have been issued and blankets of smoke are leaving ash in their wake.
The La Tuna Fire in Los Angeles has officially become the ‘largest’ brush fire in city history and Montana has lost close to 1 million acres since the beginning of the summer season. The Columbia River, which borders Washington and Oregon, had shipping traffic halted because of the poor visibility. Oregonians are feeling a bit of deja vu, comparing current circumstances to those during the 1980 eruption of Mount. St. Helens.
A 15-year-old male from Vancouver, Washington is suspected of being responsible for the Eagle Creek Fire that has burned 20,000 and forced hundreds of Oregonians from their homes. The Eagle Creek wildfire merged this past Tuesday with a nearby Indian Creek fire and has spread 15 miles and crossed the Columbia River according to an update from the National Wildfire Coordinating Group. With over 600 personnel working the fire has still yet to be contained.
Meanwhile, Montana’s beloved Glacier National Park saw the destruction of the history Sperry Chalet, a once popular hotel and dining room built in 1914 and only accessible by trail. But the threat isn’t over yet and the park is taking as many precautions as possible to make sure that no other historical buildings are taken out by the wildfire.