A river of smoke more than 100 kilometers wide streams several hundred kilometers southward from fires (marked in red) in northern China (top left) in this image from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite on October 15, 2004. Another large cluster of fires is burning in southeastern Russia (right).
As autumn advances in the Northern Hemisphere, browns and golds overtake the landscape of northern China. Mixed with the color of fading vegetation are deep reddish-brown burn scars from fires that sprang up in mid-October. These MODIS images are from October 17 and 20, 2004.