November 19, 2022 - Fires at Neah Bay, Washington


In the early morning hours of November 17, 2022, residents living near Hobuck Lake in Neah Bay, Washington reported seeing embers floating on the wind. The smoking ash turned out to be the result of three individual fires that ignited in Neah Bay that morning. Driven by strong winds, the fires quickly burnt more than 140 acres and caused evacuation of about 100 people, according to the Peninsula Daily News. Both the Washington State Department of Natural Resources and the United States Coast Guard responded to aid firefighting.

On November 18, the fires had been sufficiently contained to permit residents to return to their homes. The Cape Fire, which was the largest and the fastest-growing in the outbreak, had burnt 100 acres but had been reduced to 60 acres as of 11:00 a.m. local time. The smallest fire, the Johnny Fire, had been quenched by the time it reached two acres. The first fire discovered, called the Hobuck Lake Fire, initially charged toward a residential area, but ended up burning into nearby wetlands and was quenched. The cause of the fires is not known.

On November 18, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on board NASA’s Terra satellite acquired a true-color image of the Olympic Peninsula of Washington. Red hot spots mark areas where the thermal bands on the MODIS instrument detected high temperatures and indicate actively burning fire. A long plume of gray smoke rises from the fires and is being carried on strong wind more than 155 miles (250 km) westward over the Pacific Ocean.

Image Facts
Satellite: Terra
Date Acquired: 11/17/2022
Resolutions: 1km (85.1 KB), 500m (295.1 KB), 250m (930.8 KB)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC