Weird / Funny

Mysterious Milky Rain Falls in Washington, Oregon

mystery rain

Rain described as milky, dirty or dusty has fallen across parts of Idaho, Oregon and Washington, and meteorologists are still unsure of its origin.

The National Weather Service received reports of the “milky” rain in at least 15 cities from Rathdrum, Idaho to Hermiston, Oregon on Friday. Experts say they are looking into many potential explanations, including recent volcanic eruptions in Russia and Mexico. According to the weather service, the rainstorm may have passed through volcanic ash before it hit the Pacific Northwest, USA Today reported.

[quote text_size=”small” author=”– Robert Cramp” author_title=”National Weather Service meteorologist”]

There are a whole bunch of theories. But the reports are coming in from a limited area. If this is from a cloud of volcanic ash drifting this way, it seems like we would be seeing the milky rain in a larger area.


A volcanic eruption is currently the most likely explanation. Last month, the Shiveluch volcano, one of the most active volcanoes on the Kamchatka Peninsula of Russia, sent up ash plumes about 32,800 feet into the air, according to Oregon Live.

Washington State’s Walla Walla County Emergency Management agency says the ash is most likely from the Shiveluch volcano, which deposited ash in a large area, including Oregon and Washington, Fox 13 reported. The dusty rain may also be caused by ash from wildfires in the Oregon/Idaho area last year, or strong winds Thursday night.

The distances between Volcano Shiveluch in Russia and the active volcano near Guadalajara, Mexico is staggering, but one of the volcanoes may still be responsible. The Russian volcano is about 4,000 miles from the Washington/Oregon area, while the Mexican volcano is about 2,000 miles away.

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