Aftermath of Mount St. Helens

15 12 2009

I realize this isn’t an award-winning shot, but I wanted to share this 35mm scan anyway. I shot this image of thousands of fallen trees—looking like so many pickup sticks—from a helicopter during a tour of Mount St. Helens around 1998 or so. The guide took us over the top of the crater of volcano (and yes, it’s still active—you can see continuous puffs of smoke from overhead) and through the valley. The devastation of May 18, 1980, was evident through all the new growth. The helicopter had a glass-bottom area (disconcerting and thrilling at the same time!), so I could see herds of elk migrating through the valley.

The volcano began a dome-building eruption in September 2004 after nearly two decades of relative inactivity. I just read on Wikipedia that the last activity was in January 2008. In July of the same year, scientists determined the eruption had ended after more than six months of no volcanic activity. Check out the USDA Forest Service’s VolcanoCam, with near real-time images of Mount St. Helens, taken from the Johnston Ridge Observatory. And if you’re curious about the current seismic activity—as well as other interesting information—check out this page here35mm slide scanned by

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