A Mountain Exploded
Back on May 18, 1980 , the landscape of Washington State was
changed forever. A mountain named Mount Saint Helens blew
it's top at a little after 8:32 am. The explosion was set off by a
5.1 earthquake, 1 mile below the ground. This immediately caused
the north side of the mountain to collapse, triggering a rapid
chain of events that caused widespread devastation.
Thirteen hundred feet of the mountain peak collapsed or blew
out sideways, causing massive mudflows that filled 24 square miles
of the valley below. The blast flattened trees, destroyed forest
and recreation land, wrecked homes and bridges and roads. But
the worst loss was the 57 lives that were ended.
After 9 hours of eruptions and ash, the mountain had done
it's worst. Complete annihilation in the nearby areas. Wreckage
that would take decades to recover from.
...and after the blast
The following pictures were taken by my Grandparents home.
They lived a little over an hour from the mountain and had several
inches of ash to contend with. I was told it stayed around for months.
Everyone wore masks to protect their lungs. There was so much
ash, that to this day, there are still stockpiles that artists use to
create beautiful glass artwork from.
Today I live about 10 minutes from where my Grandparent's
used to live, but in 1980, at the age of 5, I lived 3 hours north.
I remember that we were visiting family out of town and
immediately drove home, to beat the ash I assume. I only
remember having a light dusting of the icky gray stuff
at home. I don't remember being at all scared, if it were to
happen today, I think I would be much more terrified.
I guess no matter where you live, you take your chances with
Mother Nature. Here in Washington, most of the time it's pretty
mild. We only have to worry about the occasional flooding or
a Volcano erupting every once in a while, God willing, I won't
see another one of those in my lifetime!
God Bless all the families that lost loved ones on this terrible
day. Your loved ones are not forgotten, we will remember...