Monday, June 6th was the day we planned for a 12mile hike on Mt St Helen’s, as a late anniversary celebration. Well, we didn’t go to bed as early as we should’ve and didn’t get our NW Forest Pass like we needed. We figured we can get them when we get there.Â We got our packs all ready Sunday and left here by 6 am, figuring the drive would take about 2-3hrs.Â We did figured pretty correctly on the drive, took only a little bit longer due to the fog that we encountered the higher we went. One moment it was clear the next moment couldn’t see a thing on a winding mountain road. The pass thing really messed us up, because none of the centers opened until 10am. If you want to do an all day hike and be back by sundown, you need to start by 8/9am. So we had already checked a few possible substitute shorter hikes that we could do instead.
They did have some pullovers for you to view the area. You could see tree trunks from the landslide buried sideways in the dirt and exposed by the rivers that recut their flow through the land. It really does mess with your mind when you think about it and see it and then the info at the observatory, a bigger mind frock…wow
We went to the Johnson Ridge Observatory, where the original hike would’ve started. Johnson Ridge is what forced the landslide to move west instead of keep coming north. Wow about the view..the pictures we took do not do it justice. When we first got there, Mt St Helen was covered in clouds and would peak out.Â When the observatory opened, we saw the 16min movie they have. They used the original film with some added CGI, it was actually pretty well done. Learned a lot more about the blast that neither of us knew.
Didn’t feel so bad about not getting the pass needed for the hike until late, because the trail we wanted to take is still covered in snow and won’t be open until July 4th area. So the fact that we’ve been doing the higher elevation hikes in the fall, has been a good thing. And it was a very good thing that we ended up doing the 2.5 mile hike..it was a big workout. Going by how long it took us, with similar terrain, that they 12mile hike would’ve taken us 9-10hrs. We really enjoyed ourselves and learned a great deal.
I’ll be posting some pics in a separate post and I still need to make a gallery.
I’ve been working this for a couple of hours and heading to bed.