Smoke from wildfires as far away as northern Alberta was covering Northland skies Thursday.

The National Weather Service in Duluth said skies were otherwise clear, but that smoke from Canada was drifting southeast, including over Lake Superior.

Smoke was thick enough in western Minnesota to drop air quality readings into the moderate level in some areas. The smoke also is likely to trigger some unusually orange sunsets and sunrises.

In addition to the Canadian fires, the U.S. Forest Service was conducting small, intentional fires in the Superior National Forest Thursday to remove dead trees that could fuel larger wildfires. Those fires were near Isabella and Finland in Lake County.

There is a slight chance of thunderstorms later Thursday, but otherwise sunny skies are expected through the weekend and into next week.

See updated air quality levels at