By Associated Press - Saturday, July 4, 2015

MINOT, N.D. (AP) - After almost of a week, smoke from Canadian wildfires continued to blanket parts of North Dakota on Saturday and some residents said they’re growing tired of the hazy skies.

Smoke from wildfires in northern Saskatchewan has been blowing as far south as Tennessee, with a thick haze extending through much of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, eastern Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois and Missouri..

“I think it is really harmful for people with conditions like asthma and lung conditions,” Amos Glem, a Minot resident, told the Minot Daily News. “You don’t want to deal with any of that and even for people with no conditions, it is really annoying.”

An air quality map produced by the federal Environmental Protection Agency showed Saturday morning that western North Dakota and the region surrounding Fargo had some of most unhealthy air in the country. By Saturday afternoon, the air quality in western North Dakota and around Fargo had been upgraded to being unhealthy mostly for sensitive groups, such as older people and people with respiratory problems.

The smoke is from dozens of fires burning in Saskatchewan, fed by drought and high temperatures. Because of the size of the fires, large amounts of smoke travel high into the atmosphere, where the upper layers have strong winds that can carry the smoke great distances.

A forecast map from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Saturday showed smoky conditions are likely to return to north-central North Dakota by Sunday afternoon as upper-level winds shift back to the pattern they’ve been in over the past several days, according to KXMC-TV.

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