Photo of the Route Fire from a commercial airliner. Aug. 31, 2022. (Emily Stronks)

Smoke from the Route Fire near Castaic, California could be seen from miles away on the ground, but the view was even more dramatic from thousands of feet above the earth.

KTLA viewer Emily Stronks snapped a photo from her window seat on a commercial flight Wednesday afternoon as the fire exploded to several thousand acres, prompting evacuations and the closure of the 5 Freeway.

Her photo shows smoke rising from the fire just west of Castaic Lake, then spreading in all directions, with the Pacific Ocean, Santa Cruz Island, and Santa Rosa Island in the distance.

The fire prompted South Coast AQMD to issue a Smoke Advisory indicating unhealthy air quality conditions.

The Route Fire had grown to 5,200 acres with 12% containment as of Thursday afternoon.

Evacuations remained in effect along Old Ridge Route Road, south of Templin Highway, and north of Northlake Hills Elementary School.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.