We left Astoria, Oregon and headed inland on Sunday with the intention of spending a day near Mount St Helens and checking out the visitor's center there. We discovered so much amazing beauty in the area we had to stay a few more days to enjoy it all!
The beautiful peaks of the Cascade mountain range were just the icing on the cake. We saw vistas where two and sometimes three peaks were visible - Mount St Helens, Adams, and Hood. On a later drive through the national forest we even got some great views of Mt. Rainier!
The Mount St Helens eruption of 1980 is well remembered by most people who were alive at the time but we were surprised at the details we did not know and touched by the stories of the people who survived the blast and those who lost their lives. The science and research that continues today helps scientists around the world understand and better predict volcanic eruptions. Mount St Helens is the youngest volcano in the Cascade range and it promises more activity in the near future.
We discovered, on the less visited side of Mt St Helens, wonderful hikes inside a lava tube created thousands of years ago and waterfalls carving through layers of lava from centuries of eruptions.
The forest of tall, old trees was beautiful, our campsite was perfect, and the weather was mild. We will return to this place again, it has captured our hearts and our imagination.
More info about Mount St Helens here.
Follow this link to our photo album: Mt St Helens
Here's a moment of Zen from our hike to Iron Creek Falls -