Intersection

What effect do high winds have on Vegas fun?

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Winds blow at the hair (and fur) of Claudia Khol of Austria and her dog Lily, a 2-year-old Maltese, by the Welcome to Las Vegas sign Thursday, March 30, 2017.
Photo: Steve Marcus

You've probably noticed by now that the apocalypse is upon us. Strong southwest winds, gusting from 35 to possibly as high as 70 miles per hour, will batter the Valley well into Friday. You can see the effects for yourself—dust clouds, fallen trees, trash cans rolling down the street—but what does this mean for fun? Is fun still a thing today?

Forget (most) thrill rides. Slotzilla, New York-New York's Big Apple Coaster and the rides at the top of Stratosphere Tower are shut down until the wind subsides. However, the High Roller observation wheel is still turning ... not that there's much to observe from it today, except more dust.

Your flight is late. McCarran and other local airports are still operating, though incoming and outgoing flights are scheduled further apart. Individual airlines can choose to ground their flights, but a full ground stop has to be ordered by the FAA, and they haven't so far. If you're scheduled to fly anywhere Thursday night or Friday, don't give up hope, but at the same time, don't expect your flight to leave on time, if at all.

Go for a drive? Maybe. Check Nevada DOT's Twitter account (@nevadadot) for notifications of road closures and vehicle height restrictions.

You could go hiking. Red Rock Canyon is open, both its trails and its visitor center. "But I wouldn't come out here, though," a staffer said. "We're getting gusts up to 60 miles per hour. Try us tomorrow—it'll still be windy, but it won't be this."

Maybe take a bath instead. Hotel pools close during high winds—not because of baby tsunami, which is totally a real thing, but because of patio chairs lifting up and flying into the water. To hell with it. Anyone up for ordering a pizza and binge-watching the trash cans rolling down the street?

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