Top 10 Interesting Mount St Helens Facts
You can barely keep track of the number of Mount St. Helens facts there are. This is because this age-old volcano has changed so much over thousands of years. In fact, the truth of the matter is, Mount St. Helens is still changing, even now.
Because of the constant deviations within this region, it is one of the best places to visit in Washington State. However, it is very volatile and unpredictable at times. People who come to Mount St. Helens almost always feel a sense of vulnerability knowing that there is a level of danger.
So, here are the top 10 most interesting Mount St. Helens facts:
- Although there are several mountains along the Cascade Range, which stretches along the borders of Oregon, Washington and northern California, the Mount St. Helens eruption average is higher than all of those combined.
- Many Mount St. Helens facts speak about the 1980 eruption which caused an earthquake that measured 4.2 on the Richter scale, rising magma that extended the volcano’s flanking position northward 5 feet each day, the most impressive terrestrial landslide ever recorded and the fire that scorched more than 230 square miles.
- Crater Glacier, which was formed between 1980 and 1986, is the newest glacier in the world. It was formed by rock and snow accumulations and is also one of the newest Mount St. Helens facts.
- The ash that came from the volcanic eruption during 1980 actually took just 3 days to reach the east coast of the United States and within 15 days, it had encircled the entire globe affecting every continent on earth.
- The eruption of 1980 also caused havoc in the ocean. Lahars, called mudflow created from volcanic ash, forced over 30 ships to dock in other ports. In addition, rivers and streams were filled with sand, rocks and mud.
- To date, the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption remains the most costly and destructive economically in the history of the United States. It is estimated that the U.S. government spent $518.6 million.
- The 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption also cost the private insurance industry. By the following year, more than 40,000 people had filed insurance claims and hundreds of recovery loan applications were filed.
- Another of the more interesting Mount St. Helens facts is detection. Scientists use a GPS system, similar to those in vehicles and airplanes. They track the movement of the volcano and theirs is so sensitive that it can signal tiny fragments of movement less than an inch, about 1/16th and it uses the same power as a bulb for a refrigerator.
- Although you need a permit, hiking Mt. St. Helens is something that can be done anytime of the year. There are over 200 miles containing hundreds of trails. Some are simple and easy to access while others require more skill and stamina.
- Trying to compare Mount St. Helens and Mount Rainier facts is like comparing apples and oranges. Mostly because Mount St. Helens is active and quite busy. Geologists keep a watchful eye on Mount St. Helens for fear of the next eruption. Most are convinced it will occur within the next 10 to 50 years.