"Awesome Mount Saint Helens" Top 5 Page for this destination Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument by Geoff_Wright

At one time Mount St. Helens was one of the most beautiful mountains in the entire Cascade range in the American Northwest. In 1805, William Clark in the Lewis and Clark expedition described Mount St. Helens as "perhaps the greatest pinnacle in America."

At 8:32 Sunday morning, May 18, 1980, Mount St. Helens erupted.

In 1982 the President and Congress created the 110,000-acre National Volcanic Monument for research, recreation, and education. Inside the Monument, the environment is left to respond naturally to the disturbance. Much of the area is not open to the public due to the nature of the current environmental pressures.

My Guide and Host

When I began my 2-week stay in California and Oregon I never gave a thought to visiting Mount St Helens. VT member phildeni (Phil and Deni, his wife) hosted me for most of my stay. Phil decided that we would visit Seattle, and we took a small detour of 104 miles, along the Spirit Lake Memorial Highway (State Route 504) to Mount St Helens. We didn't have a great deal of time here, as we still had a long journey to Seattle, so we only briefly stopped off at a couple of points in order to admire the beauty of the place, and take a few photos. Photos, however, don't do the place justice, as it's so expansive and wide open that the gorgeous views get blended into the foreground scenery. So, if you intend to visit, do leave more time than you think you will need. The highway is, of course, quite modern, having been completely rebuilt following the eruption, and certainly during the summer months, you'll have no trouble driving along it.

Again, I have to thank Phil most sincerely for showing me one of the best natural sights in the Northwest!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:See nature at its best - and worst!
  • Cons:You will need more time here than you think - plan well ahead
  • In a nutshell:If you are in the area, don't miss it!
  • Last visit to Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument: Jun 2003
  • Intro Updated Feb 4, 2004
  • Add to Trip Planner (?)
  • Report Abuse

Reviews (14)

Comments (10)

  • VeronicaG's Profile Photo
    Nov 10, 2006 at 10:42 AM

    You've certainly researched your info on Mt. Saint Helens, Geoff! It was fascinating reading about the specific phases leading to the eruption...I'm so glad I wasn't anywhere near the place! Great tips...

  • Pete.Gibson's Profile Photo
    Jan 29, 2006 at 1:28 PM

    Fasinating page Geoff, the awesome power of nature,Eh !! yet when it sleeps it looks so serene

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Jul 9, 2005 at 3:28 PM

    Geoff, a fantastic page on Mt. Saint Helens and it's famous eruption! I can hardly believe that it was that long ago because it was so spectacular that it still is etched in my mind! Beautiful photos and excellent info here!

  • bugalugs's Profile Photo
    Apr 21, 2005 at 7:31 AM

    What an interesting page Geoff, and yes I can understand that when you were writing about it saw a tv programme on it, it does alter things when you have actually visited a place.

  • starship's Profile Photo
    Feb 16, 2005 at 5:10 AM

    As you saw, my Mt. St. Helen's page is still incomplete...but your excellent page has spurred me to want to complete it! It is a glorious place, isn't it? Your photos are wonderful as well as all the info. you have here.

  • stoney13's Profile Photo
    Oct 19, 2004 at 7:44 AM

    Awesome page! Did you know they say its about to erupt again and people had to evacuate the area? Maybe anyday now! Beautiful pics!

  • goingsolo's Profile Photo
    Oct 11, 2004 at 10:00 AM

    Excellent and very informative commentary on the history of volcanic eruptions. Great pictures too. :)

  • EllenH's Profile Photo
    Sep 10, 2004 at 11:02 AM

    i was there on a rainy foggy day, (imagine that in WA.) I loved the visitor center and what info we could get, the stories were so sad. You are so lucky to have a clear day, awesome photos.

  • londonlover's Profile Photo
    Aug 28, 2004 at 10:06 AM

    Great pictures..what an amazing and scary natural wonder. Never been there, but it definitely merits a stop next time I'm out West!

  • ATLC's Profile Photo
    Feb 15, 2004 at 12:54 AM

    Very informative. I remember that eruption well. I was a teenager then but can still remember the photo's I saw in Time magazine.


“ Sometimes just let your heart rule your head!”

Online Now


Top 1,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 0 3 0 2
Forum Rank:
0 0 5 5 5

Badges & Stats in Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument

  • 14 Reviews
  • 24 Photos
  • 0 Forum posts
  • 8,994PageViews

Have you been to Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument?

  Share Your Travels  

Photos in Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument

See All Photos (24)

Travel Interests

See All Travel Interests (4)