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Vibrant sunset expected tonight. Here's why

Something is traveling high in the sky
Submit your sunset photos for ArtWorks City Shine project
Posted at 12:03 PM, Jun 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-03 12:05:37-04

Sometimes just by looking at the sky, we can all tell something is off. Different.

Today was one of those mornings. It was a clear start to the day yet we ended with with this muddled red sunrise. But why? Without the clouds or low lying fog, the sunrise should have been uneventful.

As always, we are digging deeper into what's happening in our sky. And today the answer is simple: smoke.

Canadian wildfires are producing a large amount of smoke in Alberta and that is being carried by the jet stream all the way down into the Ohio Valley. And it's not just us, cities across the Midwest and down into the Carolinas are seeing this same smoke. Here's a look at the overall setup (simplified):

How upper level winds carry smoke to the Ohio Valley

Even this afternoon, the blue color of the sky just looks a little off. Almost muted. And that's because the smoke particles in the atmosphere are there, although not as visible when the sun is higher in the sky. Those tiny particles are dulling the color of blue we are seeing right now.

So what does this mean for tonight? It means we *should* see a rather vibrant sunset. And following that, another interesting sunrise on Tuesday. Take a picture and share it with us later today!