The 2013 summer fire season heated up across central Russia in July, driven by an unusual heat wave. A persistent high pressure weather pattern in the Russian Arctic – a blocking high – contributed to the heat wave. Temperatures were reported as high as 32°C (90°F) in the northern city of Norlisk, where daily July highs in Norlisk average 16°C (61°F).
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) captured this true-color image of fires across central Russia on July 25, 2013. Clusters of fires burn in Khanty-Mansiysky and Yamal-Nenetskiy districts, in the west of this image. Large fires are also seen in and near the Irkutsk Oblast, in the eastern section of the image. Red marks indicated hot spots were thermal sensors on the MODIS instrument detected abnormally warm surface temperatures associated with fire.
Most summer wildfires in Siberia occur south of the 57°N latitude line, near the southern edge of the taiga. Many of the July 2013 wildfires are burning north of that, burning in woodlands near the 65°N latitude line. The 65°N latitude line runs through the center of this image.