Monday, March 10, 2014

Crater Lake and Mount Saint Helens in 1993

In 1993 a group of faculty and students from BYU traveled to Crater Lake and Mount St. Helens. It was 13 years after the 1980 eruption. We planned to hike into the eruption crater. But first a few shots of Crater Lake. Above a couple of Clark's Nutcrackers wait for us to feed them.

 The lake was so smooth and calm that in some pictures it is hard to tell where the lake ends, like the picture below where the crater rim seems to float out into the middle of the sky.

It looks so beautiful and peaceful that its hard to imagine it was once the site of terrible devastation as Mount Mazama erupted to form the crater.

 The Pinnacles shown above are eroded remnants of old fumaroles that released gases through the ash flow tuff that erupted out of Mount Mazama.

 The day of our hike into the summit of Mount St. Helens was in late August and the night before the hike, it snowed on the mountain. I had no coat to wear, so I purchased this vest to keep me warm on the hike. Here I am standing at a rest stop about halfway up into the crater.

The snow cover and clouds produced a mystical feeling as we marched up the mountain. As we entered the crater, we could hear rocks falling almost continuously off of the walls of the crater.

The view of the mountain from a distance. Our hike took us up into the heart of the eruption crater.

Around the mountain as we drove and toured, we saw the recovery of life on the slopes that had been devastated by the blast of the eruption, knocking down an entire forest of trees and laying them out all in the same direction as the blast passed by.

Near the visitor's center was a car demolished by the blast from the volcano with a few of our group looking on. You can watch a video about the eruption produced by the USGS here. Don Swanson, who is featured in the video, was our guide up the mountain in 1993.

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