Fires and smoke in southern California

Fires and smoke in southern California
  • Credit:

    Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

Ten large fires rage across southern California in this true-color Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) image taken on October 27, 2003 by NASA’s Aqua satellite. Starting in the north, the first cluster of red dots is a combination of the Piru, Verdale, and Simi Incident Fires, which have burned a combined 113,680 acres of land. The next line of dots consists of the Old, Grand Prix, and Mountain Fires. The small cluster closer to the coast is the Roblar 2 Fire. Going south, the Paradise Fire (top), the Cedar Fire (center), and the Otay Fire (bottom) form a massive veil of smoke over San Diego. Overall, well over 200,000 acres have burned in the fires.

Images & Animations


File Dimensions

  • 850x1100
  • JPEG 173 KB
  • 1700x2200
  • JPEG 600 KB
  • 3400x4400
  • JPEG 2 MB

Note: Often times, due to the size, browsers have a difficult time opening and displaying images. If you experiece an error when clicking on an image link, please try directly downloading the image (using a right click, save as method) to view it locally.


  • Data Date:

    October 27, 2003
  • Visualization Date:

    October 27, 2003
  • Sensor(s):

    Aqua - MODIS
NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration