ST. GEORGE — Wind gusts of up to 50 mph are forecast to sweep through parts of south central and southeastern Utah Friday, making driving difficult and causing potentially hazardous boating conditions on Lake Powell.
The National Weather Service in Salt Lake City issued a wind advisory for the area in effect from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. MST Friday.
Areas affected include the Glen Canyon and Lake Powell Recreation area, the San Rafael Swell and the south central valleys of Utah, including the cities of Green River, Hanksville, Kanab, Escalante and Bullfrog.
An approaching cold front will generate gusty southwest winds of 15 to 25 mph beginning early Friday morning. Winds will continue to strengthen during the morning, and then reach their peak Friday afternoon, approaching 50 mph.
The cold front will pass through the area during the late afternoon and early evening hours, with gusty north winds for a couple of hours behind the cold front.
Winds will remain strong early into Friday evening.
Hazardous boating conditions will develop on Lake Powell, with the worst conditions along open water and through narrow canyons.
Winds will create very choppy water and generate large waves which could capsize or swamp small watercraft.
Operators of small craft are urged to postpone their outings until the winds subside.
Travel, especially for high profile and light weight vehicles, will become difficult due to the strong winds.
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