If Mount St. Helens was popular before it erupted, it’s absolutely famous now! Seeing this volcano has been on my bucket list for a while, so I was excited when I got to take a tour from Seattle to the mountain through Evergreen Escapes.
The day started with a complementary pick-up from downtown Seattle by Evergreen Escapes. It was nice to not have to worry about driving and just get to enjoy the ride! I loved my first tour from Evergreen Escapes- one to Mount Rainier, so I knew I was in for another treat.
Our first stop was the visitor center. Even if you never make it to the mountain itself, the Mount St. Helens’s visitor center is really interesting. They have a lot of displays of the mountain and a ton of information to take in. I don’t think I would have been able to really appreciate the mountain without learning all the information behind it. One of my favorite parts of the visitor center was a really cool glass mosaic of the eruption.
The best days to see Mount St. Helens are clear, sunny days. Unfortunately, those are not the adjectives I’d use to describe the day I went. Even though the weather was really bad, my guide did everything he could to make the most of the day. We spent a lot of time at the visitor center, watching ranger information and checking from time to time to see if the fog had lifted. I really wanted to see the mountain, but I have to say that I didn’t mind being in the visitor center for a while. Like I said, it was pretty cool.
After a while, our guide decided to take us on a short hike around the visitor center. It was very nice, and had great views. The natural world in that area is perfectly gorgeous. We were able to take a look through binoculars, and even saw an elk in the distance! We also stopped by a small town that is supposedly haunts of Bigfoot. Of course, the only thing I saw in the trees was that elk and a few forest birds. Besides the elk and Bigfoot’s hometown, we also stopped by the ruins of a house that had been blown to bits by the volcanic eruption.
Finally, we came to a point where the crater was supposed to be visible. I searched through the mist and strained my eyes… but no luck. I could almost make out an outline, but not quite. Despite the disappointment of not getting to see it, the hike was beautiful and well worth the trip. We could, however, see Spirit Lake from a distance. Spirit Lake used to be two different bodies of water, but the blast from the volcano caused them to merge into a single lake and shot a giant wave into the air. For a while, the lake was uninhabitable, but nature finally evened things out and created the beautiful lake it is today. Marty, our guide, had a lot of knowledge to share about the lake and the whole surrounding area.
When lunchtime rolled around, I and the rest of my tour took a short stroll around Goldwater lake while we waited for Marty to set up. Before long, we were seated in a circle, sipping wine, eating, and sharing stories. Two of the people I sent with had gone on the same Mount Ranier tour as I had, so we already felt like family.
The Mount St. Helens tour was a day well spent. Evergreen escapes is always a hassle-free tour, and they do a great job of adjusting to the group. They give you the best possible tour under whatever circumstances. I’d definitely do it all over again!