NFR Mt St Helens eruption. May 18th, 1980. 39 years ago. Where were you?

GAT

Dumbfounded
#61
My wife, and a good friend were in Olympia visiting her Grandma. We got the call to get the hell out'a town because the mountain blew and I-5 was closed.

So we rapidly got the hell out of there and spent many many many hours on 101 trying to drive back to Corvallis. At one point, we could see the mountain, minus the top, spewing black ash so it looked like a giant smoke stack.

Let me tell you something, it is a humbling thing to see the top of a mountain gone and ash billowing up into the sky... it was a sight straight out of Lord of the Rings. It is not a trip we will likely forget.
 
#62
In an archery tournament in NW Marysville. Sounded like a rumbling sonic boom, didn't hear the news until after the tournament. Scored 400 in the bare bow division....easily my best score...and best memory of that day!
 
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GAT

Dumbfounded
#65
She can go off again. But I doubt if I'll ever get the same view I did the first time.

The ash is nasty stuff. You couldn't brush it off painted surface because it would scratch the devil out of the finish ... it would also take out an engine if he got past an air filter.
 

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
#68
Climbing on Castle Rock in Tumwater Canyon. Heard the boom. Didn't know what it was. Didn't find out what happened until the WSP turned us around from trying to head south on 97 to get home and told us to take US2 to I5 due to extremely poor visibility.

The Mrs was working the MARS station at McChord that immediately went on 12 hour shifts for a week passing emergency radio traffic.
 
#69
Partying at Boyer pk on the Snake river with friends that went to WSU. They stopped the music, shut down the kegs and told everyone to go home because volcanic fallout was heading our way. It looked like a dark tidal wave in the distance, and by the time we got back to Pullman it was pitch black....2:30 in the afternoon. About 4:00 it looked like powder snow falling. 5”-6” total. I was supposed to sign closing papers on my house....couldn’t get home for 3 days. Something to tell the grandkids....
I was playing frisbee on the front lawn of the Sigma Nu house. That kicked off a week of keggers, cards, and Jimmy Buffett's Volcano song.
 
#70
I was at my Dad's house in Bellevue, with a girlfriend who grew up in the Wenatchee Valley. The phone lines were jammed, but at about 8:00 we finally got through to her parents, who were OK. I remember all the uncertainty about how the ash would effect car engines and the environment.

There was a second, smaller eruption a few days later, and I was able to see the ash cloud from my 9th floor office in Tacoma.

Tom
 

Grayone

Fishin' to the end, Oc.P
#71
Gresham, Oregon. The day before the blast we could see the top of St Helens over the nearby fir trees. After the blast, no more mountain, just the ash plume.
I flew around St Helens the weekend before the blast. The dogs head had an enormous crevasse on the uphill side. TV stations did not show it. You could tell the mountain was coming apart. I have some photos somewhere. When I find them I will post them.
 

Grayone

Fishin' to the end, Oc.P
#72
Gresham, Oregon. The day before the blast we could see the top of St Helens over the nearby fir trees. After the blast, no more mountain, just the ash plume.
I flew around St Helens the weekend before the blast. The dogs head had an enormous crevasse on the uphill side. TV stations did not show it. You could tell the mountain was coming apart. I have some photos somewhere. When I find them I will post them.
Photos are on slides, dang. Never fear, I have a converter ordered.
 

GeorgeV

Active Member
#73
I was helping a friend on his cruiser on Lake Washington when the neighbor said the mountain erupted. Three people I worked with were just north of he mountain when it erupted, two made it out, one was killed. The ash went east over much of WA. The next weekend was Memorial Day, many folks went towards the ocean because of the ash on the east side. St. Helen's went off again, the winds took the ash to the west. I was working on the nuclear plants at Satsop, the ash covered everything, we couldn't start any of the equipment, so most of the job shut down, a couple of contractors decided to work. There was a tall derrick crane, it looked like 55 gallon drums stacked on top of each other and rigged like a sail boat mast. It fell on that Monday. If the job had not been shut down that day a lot of people would have been injured or worse.
I hunted ducks on Winchester Wasteway for quite a few years, I knew the spots I could wade across it. The ash was soft on the bottom and I would sink in so the water was over my hip boots, I got permission from the land owner so I didn't need to wade the ditch, but the ducks quit using the ponds.
 

smc

Active Member
#74
I was in Reno with my (then) wife and her parents. Father in law was a retiree from Boeing and moved to Reno from their tree farm in Onalaska.

My daughter was born almost 9 months to the day after the "eruption". :p
 

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