Air Quality

View to the south from the top of Lassen Peak
View looking south from the top of Lassen Peak
 
Three stacked images of air quality monitoring stations, landscape photo with hazy sky, and infographic on wildfire smoke and health
Top to bottom: Manzanita Lake air quality montoring stations, Lake Helen and Lassen Peak in smoke, and infographic on Wildfire Smoke and Your Health

Wildfire Smoke and Air Quality

The best indicator of air quality related to wildfire smoke is particle pollution level. This measurement is often displayed as: Particles (PM2.5). This represents the concentration of fine particles in the air that are 2.5 micrometers or smaller (these can only be seen with a microscope). Park staff is not able to predict if conditions will be smoky for your trip. We encourage you to use the resources below to view current conditions and forecasts to inform your plans.

Kohm Yah-mah-nee webcam

Image from Southwest Area updated every 15 minutes. See what it looks like in the park right now.

Map of PM2.5 levels, fires, and smoke near the park

Interactive map at fire.airnow.gov. Click on the icons to view details for each air quality sensor or fire. Smoke is displayed as transparent, gray shapes. Map includes permanent sensors (also listed below) and temporary sensors including: Mineral, Old Station, Shingletown, and Manton.

PM2.5 levels in towns near the park

View air quality data from permanent sensors in towns near the park at airnow.gov: Chester (SE), Redding (NE), Red Bluff (SW)

Weather forecasts for the park

Southwest Entrance, Manzanita Lake, Lassen Peak. Significant smoke conditions will be included in weather forecast as haze or smoke.

Regional smoke forecasts

North Central Valley | Eastern Sierra (the park overlaps the two regional outlooks)

Smoke Impacts

View California Smoke Information or Fire-related Air Conditions

During summer, smoke from wildfires in and around Lassen occasionally degrade park air quality. Fires and related smoke impacts can continue to occur in the fall and sometimes as late as December in a dry year. The park and its features and facilities rarely close for smoke impacts alone. However, visitors are are encouraged to reduce time spent outdoors in smoky areas.

Smoke and Your Health

Learn more about Reducing Your Smoke Exposure, Wildfire Smoke and Your Health, and How to Protect Yourself from Wildfire Smoke (video)
When wildfires create smoky conditions, there are things you can do, indoors and out, to reduce your exposure to smoke. Reducing exposure is important for everyone’s health — especially children, older adults, and people with heart or lung disease.

 

Air Quality Monitoring

Lassen Volcanic National Park is a Class I airshed, which receives the highest level of protection under the law. Lassen participates in four air quality monitoring networks (CASTNET, IMPROVE, NADP/NTN, GPMP). Park scientists visit air quality monitoring stations in the Manzanita Lake Area once a week to prepare rain or snow samples for the lab, change filters, and check the conditions of sensors. Learn more about air quality in the park here.

Visibility

Visibility is our ability to clearly see color and detail in distant views. Haze results from air pollutants, such as fine particles that absorb and scatter sunlight. Some haze occurs naturally due to dust, fog, and wildfire smoke. Unnatural haze is caused by air pollution from industry and motor vehicles. Visibility has improved at Lassen since monitoring began in the late 1980s. The clearest days have become clearer. In the last decade, the haziest days have become slightly less hazy. The estimated visual range on mid-range days was about 175 miles.

Last updated: September 14, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 100
Mineral, CA 96063

Phone:

(530) 595-4480

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