On Sunday D. and I tried to get away from the pervasive, depressing smoke from the on-going CZU August Lightning Complex fires raging in the region, so we went to the top of Mt. Umunhum in the Sierra Azul Open Space Preserve, and, in spite of the persistent smoke, I took a few pics.
Smoky view of nearby Mt. Thayer and its antenna array.
A western fence lizard at the summit.
Looking west, through the smoke.
Floof attests that summer is winding down.
Golden yarrow, and white fleur.
Another smoky view. The second pic below shows what the visibility in that same general direction is usually like when there's no wildfires nearby. The next ridge is barely visible, and the valley floor is completely obscured.
Coyote mint, one of the many native wildflowers planted in the habitat restoration program at the summit.
Looking above the former Air Force radar installation structure is the first blue sky we've seen in days.
A screencap of the CalTopo fire map. We are about equidistant between the perimeters of the CZU August Lightning Complex (on the left) and SCU Lightning Complex (on the right) fires. No matter which way the wind blows, we cannot escape the smoke!
Yes, the air quality is very poor (the black areas in the screencap below are carbon monoxide concentrations). It is so sad to see so much of this beautiful area burning to ashes and cinders.