Mt. St. Helens: in the Blast Zone

While my sister was here, I took her to see Mt. St. Helens. If you recall from my last visit to the mountain, it's quite an astounding getaway. The ashy footprint of the volcanic blast still scours the landscape, and it's amazing to think that this catastrophic event happened (almost) in my lifetime.

We contemplated Mother Nature's fury as we basked in the warm sunlight and hiked past the new life that was growing in its wake.

Also, it was crazy hot. With no tree cover or water sources to speak of, it felt like a hike through the desert. Or the moon. We did a six mile loop to see the remnants of Spirit Lake (once there was an old growth-forest thriving there, and lake homes and scout camps galore... now there is nothing but debris) before bidding farewell to the mountain.

For reference, here is a shot of Mt. St Helens taken from Johnson Ridge the day before the blast: