Light winds and warm air aloft will continue to trap smoke from wildfires and cause poor air quality over northern areas of the Great Basin.
A zone of high pressure at most levels of the atmosphere will hover over the West into the weekend.
According to Expert Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson, "The pattern favors not only warm air near the surface during the day, but warm air aloft around the clock."
This setup traps pollutants in the lowest layers of the atmosphere. These particulates can cause problems for people who suffer from respiratory ailments. The persistent smoky air also hampers outdoor activities.
"Air quality can be especially low during the late-night and morning hours, but sub-par air quality can linger throughout the day in the pattern," Anderson said.
Smoke from ongoing wildfires in the region is the main pollutant and will result in noticeable hazy sunshine in some locations.
According to the National Weather Service in Missoula, Mont., the smoke has changed very little in the valleys of north-central Idaho and west-central Montana in the last five days.
Wildfires in the U.S. are currently scorching 962,057 acres, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. As of Sept. 20, 2012, nearly 8.5 million acres have burned in large wildfires in the U.S. this year.
One of the largest fires currently burning in the region is the Mustang Complex fire in northern Idaho. Although the fire is 20 percent contained, it has burned over 300,000 acres of land.
Low humidity and warm weather will continue to promote poor fire fighting conditions. Luckily, winds have not been that gusty.
According to Meteorologist Justin Povick, "At least the pattern through the weekend does not favor thunderstorms, in which dry lightning can spark new fires."
Because of the building dry conditions and warmth in the region, people need to be careful with outdoor power equipment and open flames.
According to AccuWeather.com Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams, "A weak storm may drop in next week and may not only bring spotty showers, but may stir up the atmosphere just a bit over the Northwest and part of the Great Basin."
There is a chance the system next week may bring unwanted lightning strikes in addition to beneficial spotty rainfall.
Meteorologist Dan DePodwin contributed to this article.
Nearly the same setup for tornadoes that focused on Oklahoma Monday is targeting north central Texas Tuesday afternoon.
Severe storms, some capable of producing tornadoes, will threaten communities across northeastern Texas, northwestern Louisiana and Arkansas into Tuesday night.
The same storm system responsible for producing violent thunderstorms in Oklahoma recently will reach the Atlantic Seaboard Thursday.
While additional strong thunderstorms will roll through through portions of tornado-ravaged Oklahoma Tuesday, the risk of tornadoes has diminished.
The atmospheric severe weather engine began firing on all cylinders this past weekend and reached full speed Monday over Oklahoma.
Preliminary reports are calling it an EF-4 tornado that has caused numerous fatalities and injuries in Moore, Okla.
Ohio Valley (1860)
Tornado swarm in Ohio Valley hit Louisville, KY, Cincinnati, OH, Chilicothe, OH, and Marietta, OH. Damage totalled $1 million; 4 people killed in Cincinnati.
Memphis, TN (1983)
Freak lightning bolt strikes a man in his neck, runs down his spine, and passes out of a pocket containing keys. The bolt then struck 2 other men nearby before also hitting a tree the men were standing under at a golf course. Miraculously all three men survived.
Kansas City, KS (1957)
Forty-five people killed and millions of dollars in damage by tornadoes.