Highlights / General details
This beautifully haunting journey takes you into the heart of Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. Witness the ecosystem recovering and the on-going natural restoration process. Just miles from the crater, view the steaming caldera then head out with your naturalist guide on a walk to learn about how volcanoes are monitored and the geological events surrounding the 1980 eruption.
Today we make our way to the one of our region’s most ‘powerful’ main attractions, Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. Stopping to take photos along the way your naturalist will present dramatic evidence to just how well the ecosystem is recovering and the impressive ongoing reforestation project.
Arriving into the blast-zone, just 5 miles from the crater at the Johnston Ridge Observatory we take in some stunning views into the steaming volcano. Your naturalist will share the magic of the geological events surrounding the 1980 eruption through a variety of stories, facts and walks. Experience how volcanoes are monitored and discover how Mount St. Helens has taught us new answers to old mysteries. The Center’s state-of-the-art interpretive displays and theater magically portray the sequence of geologic events that transformed the landscape and opened up a new era in the science of monitoring an active volcano and forecasting eruptions. Read amazing eyewitness accounts from eruption survivors.
We embark on a short walk on the Eruption Trail and learn how the eruption shaped the surrounding landscape. You can expect to see views of the lava dome, crater, pumice plain, and the landslide deposit. On the return, we experience the Hummocks Trail, the largest landslide in recorded human history, in Coldwater Lake Recreation Area to see first hand how the environment was left to respond naturally to the eruption at 8:32 Sunday morning, May 18, 1980.
Nearly 230 square miles of forest was blown down or buried beneath volcanic deposits. At the same time a mushroom-shaped column of ash rose thousands of feet skyward and drifted downwind, turning day into night as dark, gray ash fell over eastern Washington and beyond. The eruption lasted 9 hours, but Mount St. Helens and the surrounding landscape were dramatically changed within moments.
Pick-up and Drop-off at your Downtown Seattle Hotel.
Highly qualified naturalist Escape Artist guide and commentary.
Travel in adventure-outfitted luxury Mercedes Van or Crossover.
Locally sourced and/or organic lunch.
Seasonal snacks and refreshments throughout the tour.
All entry fees.
Hours of operation
Available: Monday, Thursday, Saturday (May 15 - September 30); Departs at 7:30am.
Tour is approximately 12 hours.
We are able to pick up at any hotel or location in Downtown Seattle – North of King Street, South of Roy Street, and West of Interstate 5.
Children must be at least 6 years of age to participate.
What to wear:
Summer suggestions - Hat and sunglass; Light hiking pants made of synthetic materials (not cotton or denim); Non-cotton T-shirt or base layer; A long sleeve shirt or fleece jacket for cool mornings; Rain jacket or shell; Day-hikers or tennis shoes; Water wicking socks. Temperatures: 55-80°F / 13-27°C. Rainfall: Generally dry, rare showers.
Spring/Fall suggestions - Water-wicking hiking pants made of synthetic materials (not cotton or denim); Non-cotton T-shirt or long-sleeve; Fleece jacket or soft-shell; Rain jacket; Day-hikers or tennis shoes; Water wicking socks; Beanie or hat for cool mornings. Temperatures: 40-6°F / 5-20°C. Rainfall: Frequent but light showers, limited rain.
Complete information, including local telephone numbers at your destination, will be included on your Confirmation Voucher.
**All information requested must be supplied or booking is subject to automatic cancellation**