30 Years Out: Mount St. Helens

by KelsiDayle on May. 18th, 2010

Eyjafjallajökull isn't the only volcano to rock our modern world. Thirty years ago today Mount St. Helens erupted in Washington State, making it one of the most spectacular and devastating volcanoes in the history of the United States. For those of us who were not alive or old enough to remember the event, here is a haunting description of the explosion from Boston.com:

"On May 18th, 1980, thirty years ago today, at 8:32 a.m., the ground shook beneath Mount St. Helens in Washington state as a magnitude 5.1 earthquake struck, setting off one of the largest landslides in recorded history - the entire north slope of the volcano slid away. As the land moved, it exposed the superheated core of the volcano setting off gigantic explosions and eruptions of steam, ash and rock debris. The blast was heard hundreds of miles away, the pressure wave flattened entire forests, the heat melted glaciers and set off destructive mudflows, and 57 people lost their lives. The erupting ash column shot up 80,000 feet into the atmosphere for over 10 hours, depositing ash across Eastern Washington and 10 other states."

And for everyone, here are some fabulous Boston.com photos to commemorate the event.

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Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Liza's picture
Liza says:

Buzz had a feature on Mt. St. Helens back when SMM was hosting the Pompeii exhibit in 2007. Check it out.

posted on Tue, 05/18/2010 - 9:51am
KelsiDayle's picture
KelsiDayle says:

According to National Geographic, Mount St. Helens is the most dangerous volcano in the continental United States (nationally, it's second to Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii). Here are the other America's Ten Most Dangerous Volcanoes.

posted on Tue, 05/18/2010 - 1:47pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Wired has an article about Mt. St. Helens' last 30 years, along with this satellite image time-lapse video of the surrounding landscape recovering from the eruption:

posted on Wed, 05/19/2010 - 10:42am

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