Mt St Helen's National Monument
Castle Rock Travel Blog› entry 34 of 77 › view all entries
We left Mt Rainier and drove on down to Mt St Helen's, but it was after 5pm and the visitor center was closed by the time we got there. We drove up to the viewpoints, and saw a nice sunset. By the river, you could see the remains of the mudflow, or "lahar" that happened when the heat from the erupting volcano melted the snow on the mountain in an instant. In some places it was over 100 feet deep!
We walked down the trail by the visitor center, where we saw the remains of a lot of tree stumps that were left when the trees snapped due to the blast of the volcano, when it erupted back in 1980. Clouds obscured the actual mountain. We drove up a close as we could, but by then it was getting dark. A cloud actually rolled in over us, and we couldn't see very far.
Once we had made our way back down the mountain, it had cleared up and we could see the moon through some hazy yellow clouds. It was kind of spooky up there, because we were the only ones around for miles! We never saw another person or car while we were up there. We were disappointed that we never got a clear look at the actual volcano, due to the clouds, but we still had some great views. We drove to a campground that was closed by the time we got there, so we just picked an empty spot and set up. Tyler had fallen asleep already, so we just let him sleep in the truck.