Eugene or LA? 'The air quality changed overnight'

Eugene or LA? 'The air quality changed overnight'

EUGENE, Ore. - Almost anywhere you looked Monday, you could see it.

"I mean usually in Eugene, it's just so clear and beautiful," said Molly Phenix. "I've never seen it like this."

And you could smell it.

"I was staying at the Hilton and when we went into the parking garage, you could smell the smoke," said Anne Dupont.

Eugene looked more like a smoggy LA day, thanks to the Pole Creek fire burning near Sisters, which by Monday afternoon was only 10 percent contained.

"The air quality changed overnight. We had the winds shift and they're coming from the east," said Lane Regional Air Protection Agency's Sally Markos.

By noon Monday, the air quality jumped from moderate to unhealthy in the Eugene/Springfield area.

"And that's a concern for people that have any type of health problems for example asthma or respiratory issues," said Markos. "The smoke combined with the heat just makes things more miserable."

Even landmarks like the Coburg Hills and Spencer Butte were barely visible most of the day.

But Markos said the smoke is nothing compared to what the city of Sisters is dealing with.

"They're in the hazardous range," she said. "Even the most healthy people are going to feel the effects of the smoke. It would be basically like being in the fire, I mean the smoke levels are that high."

And she also warned people about heading east.

"I certainly wouldn't recommend anyone go east," Markos said. "Don't go up the Mckenzie and don't do any rafting or hiking up in the mountains there."

The good news: the National Weather Service is forecasting winds out of the southwest Tuesday with more of an onshore flow. That means a lot of the smoke in the valley will be headed east.