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Don't expect a smoky summer like last year

A meteorologist from the National Weather Service in Grand Forks says the recent moisture will play a big role to reduce regional wildfires.

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Don't expect to see (or smell) a haze as bad this summer compared to last.
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GRAND FORKS — After a smoke-filled summer in 2021, many may be wondering if the same can be expected this summer. But according to a meteorologist from the National Weather Service in Grand Forks, the smoke was driven by wildfires to the north in Canada and severe drought conditions throughout our region and Canada.

But as of now, he says there has been above average precipitation in April, not only in our region, but in that portion of Canada.

"We're expecting similar conditions that we're going to see around here in North Dakota and into what northwest Minnesota in terms of expected soil moisture and vegetative health," said Carl Jones, meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Grand Forks.

The result? Less fires, and less of a thick haze overtaking the summer skies.

But if you think we are completely off the hook, that may not be the case.

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Jones said, we could see some light, higher-sitting smoke in our area thanks to fires out on the west coast.

"That particular part of the country is still within a significant drought, and it's expected to be a really active wildfire season out there again," Jones said.

The key word to all of this is, "expecting." Jones says it's possible Mother Nature will flip a switch back to the dry season, just like she did with the recent wet stretch.

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