Just two weeks after state officials declared 2013 the driest year in California history, a fast-moving wildfire has burned 1700 acres northeast of Los Angeles, according to the Los Angeles Times. In winter. When it's usually raining.
As of this morning, the Colby Fire is zero per cent contained in Glendora, California, a city just along the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, where a state of emergency has been declared. It certainly made for an apocalyptic commute this morning.
Fanned by 27C temps, ridiculously low humidity, and Santa Ana winds, the fire's sending embers into nearby neighbourhoods where 1000 homes have already been evacuated. The skies are buzzing with planes and helicopters. Ash is falling from the smoke plumes dozens of kilometres away.
It's gonna be a long year.
This is what it looks like at my house right now, as the smoke drifts southwest through downtown LA. I actually knew there was a fire before I got out of bed because of the way my nose and throat were burning.
The Colby Fire is already big enough to see from space. Los Angeles County fire Inspector Scott Miller told KTLA-TV that the fire was moving aggressively, "especially for this time of year". Yikes. There's no rain in the forecast for the rest of the month.
Images: Nick Ut/AP; Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP; National Weather Service