After the rain

July 12, 2007

It’s a beautiful, cloudy morning here in Provo, and we just got a bunch of rain. It’s been hot and dry and hazy for quite a while now, and this rain is very refreshing. The pleasant “after the rain” smell, one of my very favorite aromas, is distinctly noticeable. What a great day!

In case you are interested, this smell is often caused by bacteria spores released into the air when the soil becomes wet following a long dry period. Read more about this on

Look, Marvin (BYU’s Eyring Science Center unofficial weather center) even has a webcam now!


Milford Flat wildfire

July 9, 2007

This thing is monstrous. The air in Utah Valley has been pretty bad since Saturday, even though we’re nowhere near the fire.This wildfire is the biggest in the history of Utah: it’s burned 300,000 acres already, over 3 times larger than the previous record of around 95,000 acres. Since it’s so big and moving so fast, the firefighting teams are having a hard time doing much about it.

All started by lightning.

UPDATE: Here’s an article from this morning with some more recent details.

UPDATE (July 17): The fire is now fully contained, but it has devastated 567 square miles of ranch land. But now there is fear it may have stirred up radiation from nuclear fallout.