That white plume issuing from Mount St. Helens’s crater: Is it asign of surrender? Hardly. It was 25 years ago the morning of May18 that the once-dormant volcano erupted, radically altering thesurrounding landscape and its own profile. Since September 2004,when a swarm of shallow earthquakes began shaking the mountainagain, the crater has been steaming regularly, some days more thanothers, and even throwing clouds of ash, to the awe of volcanowatchers at the 110,000-acre Mount St. Helens National VolcanicMonument.
Info: Take in an aerial view on a plane tour from Seattlewith Vashon Island Air ($546 for up to three passengers;www.island-air.com or 877/475-3247), or stop at Hoffstadt BluffsVisitor Center, at milepost 27 on State 504, any day from late Maythrough October to join a 30-minute helicopter tour ($114 perperson, weather and space permitting; www.mountsthelens-awesome.com/hoffstadt.htmor 360/274-7750). Take part in various Mount St. Helens-themedlectures and open houses throughout the Northwest; for schedules,visit www.fs.fed.us/gpnf and clickon the anniversary icon.