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Western Wildfires Causing Widespread Smoke, Haze Across Colorado

By Chris Spears

DENVER (CBS4) - You've probably noticed or even smelled the wildfire smoke filling Colorado skies this week.

A large ridge of high pressure in the atmosphere is producing a west-northwest flow of wind that's transporting smoke from as far away as California.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has issued a health advisory for wildfire smoke that covers most of western Colorado, including Moffat, Routt, Jackson, Grand, Rio Blanco, Garfield, Eagle, Summit, Mesa, Delta, Pitkin, Gunnison, Lake, Chaffee, Park, Montrose, Ouray, San Miguel, Dolores, San Juan, Hinsdale, Mineral, Montezuma, La Plata, and Archuleta Counties.

Locations and points of interest include, but are not limited to Craig, Steamboat Springs, Walden, Hot Sulphur Springs, Meeker, Rifle, Glenwood Springs, Eagle, Breckenridge, Grand Junction, Delta, Aspen, Gunnison, Leadville, Salida, Fairplay, Montrose, Ouray, Telluride, Dove Creek, Silverton, Lake City, Creede, Cortez, Durango, and Pagosa Springs.

The hazy conditions along the Front Range between Denver, Greeley, Boulder, Castle Rock, Fort Collins and Colorado Springs is a combination of smoke and ozone.

An Ozone Action Day alert remains in effect along the urban corridor.

Ozone is created as pollution near the ground 'cooks' in the intense daytime heat and transforms into a gas.

It can be harmful to those with compromised respiratory systems, including the young and the elderly.

(credit: CBS)

Wildfire Resources

- Visit's Colorado Wildfire section.

Wildfire Photo Galleries

- See images from the most destructive wildfires (Black Forest, Waldo Canyon, High Park and Fourmile), the deadliest (Storm King) and largest wildfire (Hayman) in Colorado history.

Meteorologist Chris Spears travels weekly in the CBS4 Mobile Weather Lab reporting about Colorado's weather and climate. Check out his bio, connect with him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @ChrisCBS4.

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