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    The Bringer of rain thebigzakbowski's Avatar
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    Mount Saint Helens

    On the news here they mentioned that it had been fourty years. I was only a few months old at the time. Anyone remember what it was like (if it even impacted you at all)?
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    I wasn't there, but I knew some people in Seattle and he said that after it blew, there was a few inches of ash everywhere - everywhere.

    A good friend of mine went in the late 80s, maybe 5 years after it blew and he said it was like ground zero of a hydrogen bomb. Miles of trees laid down, ash that was 4 and 5 feet deep, evidence of the tsunami of mud, whole trees and debris that raced down the mountain, lake full of timber, some yearlings growing. Devastation.

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    Humble Megalomaniac ElrondHubbard's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by thebigzakbowski View Post
    On the news here they mentioned that it had been fourty years. I was only a few months old at the time. Anyone remember what it was like (if it even impacted you at all)?
    I was in the Navy at the time, stationed in South Carolina. I'd been interested in it, and following it nearly every day in the newspapers. It seemed like every few days since March of that year there was a headline saying "Mount St. Helens Explodes", which was technically true for every little steam explosion from the summit crater, but always less dramatic than it was being made out to be.

    On May 19, the headline was "Mount St. Helens Explodes!" I thought, "Oh yeah, another one, and went on about my day. Only later did I find out the enormity of the event. It was actually a large factor in my decision to go into geology when I got out of the Navy and had the GI bill available to me.
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    I remember it. I was at my best friend's house and we were playing outside. We noticed that "dirt" kept getting in our eyes, so we ran back in the house to put on some swimming goggles so that we could continue playing. He lived out in the woods so we just thought that an unusual amount of dust was being kicked up from the nearby dirt road. It was only later that we discovered it was volcanic ash.

    Ultimately, our town ended up being covered in a few inches of ash. I remember watching a news report in which "experts" were speculating about the long term effects on the lungs. I'd breathed in quite a bit of it, so I remember being pretty freaked out about that.

    My dad went outside and scooped some of the ash off of his Ford Pinto and put it in a jar. That jar is still sitting in my mom's house somewhere.
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    I lived in the Crowsnest Pass Alberta , which was just north of it . It’s a 3 hour drive to Spokane from there .
    Anyways it was horrible , like a nuclear winter would be I suspect. An inch of dust everywhere, and the skies went dark for a few weeks.
    Felt like it would never end at the time , and it seemed very eerie
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    I recall it, ash made it all the way to the east coast
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    Weak and foolish OldFartTom's Avatar
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    Wow, this thread is a blast from the past (pun intended) remember it on the news, but although I was thousands of miles away (London) I remember bad weather being blamed on it
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    REMAIN INDOORS SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Restomodding sumolgi's Avatar
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    Was painting a house 150 miles to the northwest and watched it from the roof. The weirdest thing was because of the wind direction at the time, we barely saw any ash at all where we were. Like a cigarette was flicked here and there, but no accumulation anywhere. Not complaining even a little, but people in the midwest saw more than we did and we were looking at it happen.
    Last edited by sumolgi; 05-21-2020 at 12:23 PM. Reason: direction impaired
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    The Bringer of rain thebigzakbowski's Avatar
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    thanks all. I'm not near Helens but if rainier blew.....I just was curious since I wasn't old enough to remember and it's been all over the news. I should go check out the crater once this stuff is all over

    Thanks again
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    Humble Megalomaniac ElrondHubbard's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by thebigzakbowski View Post
    thanks all. I'm not near Helens but if rainier blew.....I just was curious since I wasn't old enough to remember and it's been all over the news. I should go check out the crater once this stuff is all over

    Thanks again
    I hope you do. It's ironic that it had such a big effect on my career, and yet I've never gone to see it up close.
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    REMAIN INDOORS SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by sumolgi View Post
    Was painting a house 150 miles to the northwest and watched it from the roof. The weirdest thing was because of the wind direction at the time, we barely saw any ash at all where we were. Like a cigarette was flicked here and there, but no accumulation anywhere. Not complaining even a little, but people in the midwest saw more than we did and we were looking at it happen.
    That would really have ruined the paintwork...
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    Weak and foolish OldFartTom's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by thebigzakbowski View Post
    thanks all. I'm not near Helens but if rainier blew.....
    I hear the normal route on Mount Rainer is s particularly good alpine "walk" (albeit very touristy). I expressly forbid Rainer to erupt and ruin a great route!
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    Master Roshi IronCharles's Avatar
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    I was in Portland having a cup of coffee at Sambo's on East Burnside. A guy walked in and said, "Mount Saint Helens is blowing up!"

    We all laughed.

    "No, I'm serious," he said. "Come look!"

    We all got up and went out and looked. It was awesome!



    I had a '64 Dodge Polara at the time, one of the power windows was broken, but stuck rolled down about two inches. I was never able to get that gritty ash completely out of the interior. It was like a very hard, fine glass crystal powder. Extremely abrasive, like diamond grit.
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    Squats and Milk Bando's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by thebigzakbowski View Post
    I wasn't old enough to remember
    I am, but oddly enough I don't have any memories of it. For 9/11 and the Space Shuttle disaster I remember those days vividly.
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    The Bringer of rain thebigzakbowski's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Bando View Post
    I am, but oddly enough I don't have any memories of it. For 9/11 and the Space Shuttle disaster I remember those days vividly.
    I remember challenger very hazy, just my teacher talking about it but columbia and 9/11 man yeah I could tell you exactly what I was doing
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