Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Mt. St. Helens - Nature Tuesday

The Eruption of Mt. St. Helens

Mt. St. Helens the day before the eruption.
May 17 1980 AP Photo USGS  Harry Glicken

I was eight years old on the day Mt. St. Helens literally blew its top. It happened thirty-four years ago, on May 18th, 1980, at 8:32 am. I sat safe and sound in my house in Southern Indiana, 2, 300 miles away, watching with mingled awe and horror as the news reports rolled. It's the first memory I have of a natural catastrophe of this scale. When the National Geographic issue covering the eruption arrived in the mail I looked at the pictures for hours and even read parts of the articles. The level of destruction was outside the perception of my eight year old mind.

"... 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." - Boston.Com: The Big Picture

May 23, 1980, five days after the eruption.
AP Photo Gary Stewart

Boston.com: The Big Picture

National Geographic Daily News: Mt. St. Helens pictures: Before and After

Google Search Images

Do you remember the 1980 eruption of Mt. St. Helens? Tell me about it.

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