By Tim Binnall
San Francisco residents and people living in the surrounding Bay Area were greeted by an ominous sight this morning as the sky turned an eerie orange color due to a combination of fog and smoke from wildfires that have ravaged the country's west coast. Awestruck witnesses to the unnerving scene, which reportedly stretched well into the morning and early afternoon, shared breathtaking photos and videos on social media of iconic San Francisco landmarks, such as the Golden Gate Bridge, shrouded in the orange hue and drivers were forced to use their headlights to navigate the twilight-like conditions.
Meteorologists say wildfires burning in Oregon are the likely source for the smoke which was pushed toward the region by a strong wind. Longtime residents of the city described the situation as unlike anything they had experienced before and the Bay Area office of the National Weather Service went so far as to call for reports from the public because "this is beyond the scope of our models." Fortunately, the fires are far enough away that they do not pose any immediate danger and the smoke is high enough in the atmosphere that people on the ground should not have difficulty breathing. Be that as it may, many observers couldn't help but liken the phenomenon to some kind of apocalyptic moment or, on a less worrisome scale, the surface of Mars.