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Old 09-22-2020, 09:33 AM   #1
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Is Southern Utah hazy or clear??

The various smoke maps that we are consulting are giving us inconsistent results -- we are thinking about a quick trip to Southern Utah but we don't want to get there and find that the clear desert air is hazy.

If you are anywhere near Zion or Cedar Breaks, I'd sure appreciate your observations! Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-22-2020, 10:49 AM   #2
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A little farther north

Its fairly clear in Arches, obviously north of your target. We find using the air quality indexes to be fairly accurate. We got smoked out of the Tetons a week ago
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Old 09-22-2020, 10:51 AM   #3
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Clear at Moab. Not perfect but probably worth a trip.
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Old 09-22-2020, 11:51 AM   #4
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Great -- thanks! Hoping for more folks to chime in, too . . . .
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Old 09-22-2020, 11:54 AM   #5
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Just about every place has much better air quality with the wind change. Here is Utah's. Looks good.

https://www.airnow.gov/state/?name=utah
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Old 09-22-2020, 12:19 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by profdan View Post
The various smoke maps that we are consulting are giving us inconsistent results -- we are thinking about a quick trip to Southern Utah but we don't want to get there and find that the clear desert air is hazy.

If you are anywhere near Zion or Cedar Breaks, I'd sure appreciate your observations! Thanks in advance.
We're staying just outside of Virgin, UT (Zion) and you don't realize the haze except when looking at the distant mountains.

We have noticed a measurable impact to solar collection vs what would be expected for these conditions otherwise, so it's definitely in the air - just not overtly visible.
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Old 09-23-2020, 09:37 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by profdan View Post
The various smoke maps that we are consulting are giving us inconsistent results -- we are thinking about a quick trip to Southern Utah but we don't want to get there and find that the clear desert air is hazy.

If you are anywhere near Zion or Cedar Breaks, I'd sure appreciate your observations! Thanks in advance.
Dan, as you know - One thing about the Southwest - "If you don't like the Weather - Just wait it is changing"

Pretty sure that goes for the Smoke too - when we arrived in COlorado last week it was really hazy - now almost totally Clear, and has gotten better each day.

I'd go for it,

best of luck,
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Old 09-23-2020, 12:29 PM   #8
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Yeah, I suppose we could just go and hope for the best. The problem is that if the air quality is bad (as it has been from day to day), it's really no good for hiking -- we could damage our lungs, etc., with those dreaded "2.5" particles.

Unfortunately, this is something we are very familiar with -- trying to get exercise in ozone-laden air in Southern California -- and it is a real downer.

And this is what the webcam at Bryce looks like this morning:


Click For Full-Size Image.

We may have to stay home and just go surfing until the fires in Southern Calif stop polluting the whole southwest -- November?? The seasonal flow of the zonal winds are from the southwest, so the coast is pretty clear while the deserts are suffering.

Will this year ever end?
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Old 09-23-2020, 12:49 PM   #9
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Yeah, I suppose we could just go and hope for the best. The problem is that if the air quality is bad (as it has been from day to day), it's really no good for hiking -- we could damage our lungs, etc., with those dreaded "2.5" particles.
There was a half marathon here this week, and an ultramarathon this weekend. Lots of people, including ourselves, out here training without any notable distress. Not saying that's indicative of any long-term effects.

There are PM2.5s here according to the local weather station, in concentrations of 11.1 g/m. I'm not going to presume to be able to say with any authority what that really means, but I wouldn't hesitate to go hiking here unless you're sensitive to such.

This article indicates that it should be pretty safe at those concentrations - https://blissair.com/what-is-pm-2-5.htm

Screenshot from the above link:

Click image for larger version

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Old 09-23-2020, 04:27 PM   #10
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Thanks, n0arp -- very useful info!
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Old 09-25-2020, 01:08 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by profdan View Post
Yeah, I suppose we could just go and hope for the best. The problem is that if the air quality is bad (as it has been from day to day), it's really no good for hiking -- we could damage our lungs, etc., with those dreaded "2.5" particles.

Unfortunately, this is something we are very familiar with -- trying to get exercise in ozone-laden air in Southern California -- and it is a real downer.

And this is what the webcam at Bryce looks like this morning:


Click For Full-Size Image.

We may have to stay home and just go surfing until the fires in Southern Calif stop polluting the whole southwest -- November?? The seasonal flow of the zonal winds are from the southwest, so the coast is pretty clear while the deserts are suffering.

Will this year ever end?
We were headed to Mammoth in a couple days. Hiking and outdoor activities all planned out. But with forests closed, we decided to do another destination. The campgrounds were closed for a while from the smoke as well when I was talking to the staff.
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