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Happy Fry Day: Here's where to cool off, chill out and beat the Southern California heat

Happy Fry Day: Here's where to cool off, chill out and beat the Southern California heat
To wait out Southern California's heat wave, take a cold plunge (rear pool), where the water is 55 to 65 degrees, at Glen Ivy Hot Springs in Corona, Calif. (Glen Ivy Hot Springs)

Some records are fun to set. Heat isn’t one of them. Alas, Southern California is expecting some heat records Friday and Saturday.

The National Weather Service's heat warnings for the area means it's a good time to take off and cool off. Here’s are some escape plans.

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Glen Ivy Hot Springs

Don't let the name fool you. Yes, there are hot springs but there's also an icy plunge at this oasis-like day spa in Corona, Calif. You can alternate between a hot water pool (101 to 102 degrees) and the cold plunge (55 to 65 degrees), or you could just hog the plunge until you turn to ice.

It costs $70 Friday-Sundays to spend a day and revel in the spa’s 19 pools. Arrive early, preferably half an hour before it opens at 9 a.m., to make sure you get in. (On Thursday,the spa closed to guests hen it reached capacity.)

Info: Glen Ivy Hot Springs, 25000 Glen Ivy Road, Corona; (888) 453-6489

Minus5 Ice Experience, Las Vegas

A scene from the canals of Venice, complete with a gondola, is one of the ice sculptures on display at the Minus5 bar in the Grand Canal Shoppes along the Las Vegas Strip.
A scene from the canals of Venice, complete with a gondola, is one of the ice sculptures on display at the Minus5 bar in the Grand Canal Shoppes along the Las Vegas Strip. (Minus5 Experience)

Ice bars have been a thing in Las Vegas for a while, but the searing heat may make going more urgent.

The 90 tons of ice inside means you'll need to wear a faux fur coat or parka — and maybe have a drink.

Everything inside the Minus5 Ice Experience — the seats, chandeliers, the bar — is made of ice. An LED light show and music round out the entertainment at sites in Mandalay Bay and the Venetian.

The experience will set you back $22 to enter and chill out; $42 adds two "ice cocktails" as well. The Venetian location has a kids experience package ($29) that comes with a mocktail.

Top of Mt. Whitney

The good news is it’s cool up there; the bad news is you have to hike to the 14,500-foot summit. It's a grueling 11 miles and 6,000 feet of gain to reach the heart-stopping views of the Sierra and 68- to 70-degree highs predicted for Friday and Saturday. (You need to get a $20 permit beforehand.)

Can't do the hike? Drive the curvy Whitney Portal Road from Lone Pine, Calif., to the Whitney Portal Store & Hostel at 8,300 feet in elevation where you'll find mountain tchotchkes, good burgers (even veggie ones) and fries. Temperatures at the store are expected to be in the 70s, with lows in the high 50s, if you stay to camp overnight.

Flee north to get away from the heat. San Francisco's high on Friday is expected to be 75, dropping to 68 on Saturday.
Flee north to get away from the heat. San Francisco's high on Friday is expected to be 75, dropping to 68 on Saturday. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

The Northwest and Northern California

If you're willing to take a last-minute flight, head to Portland, Ore. The weekend forecast includes clouds and a high of 71 degrees. Ahhhh.

Seattle is expected to be at 81 degrees by day with a merciful evening cool-down to 57 degrees.

Kayak.com as of Thursday showed round-trip weekend airfares starting at $523 and $556, respectively.

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Can't bear to leave California? San Francisco will be sunny on Friday at 75 and cooler on Saturday with a high of 68. You can try driving instead of flying, but you’ll hit big heat along the way.

If you’re hanging around here

If you can’t get away, seek out cool indoor places — movie theaters, a library, a shopping mall, a museum.

Be sure to follow these recommendations from the National Weather Service: Drink plenty of water, stay out of the sun between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., check on elderly friends and neighbors to make sure they are OK, and never leave kids or pets in cars, closed or open.

Also, wear light, loose clothing in colors that reflect the sun (that means no L.A. hipster black), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says, and don’t eat big hot meals, which can make you feel hotter.

If you’re sweating, you’ll lose salt and other minerals too, the CDC says. A sports drink may restore the balance.

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