1980-2015: Thirty Five Years of Science and Learning at Mount St. Helens
On May 18, 1980, after weeks of tremors, Mount St. Helens erupted spectacularly and profoundly changed a vast area surrounding the volcano. In the three-and-a-half decades since the catastrophic eruption, scientists from the USDA Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station, along with their colleagues from around the country, have used the volcano as a living laboratory for ecological research.
This year, 2015, marks the 35th, anniversary of the 1980 eruption and represents a key moment in the volcano’s history. It is a time for scientists—several of whom have dedicated their entire careers to studying the ecological responses at Mount St. Helens—to synthesize and showcase over three decades of productive research and to plot the course for the future.
Browse this site to learn more about the ecological responses to the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens and how you can take part in the 35th-anniversary commemoration.
Making Science Connections, Worldwide
Mount St. Helens is the most studied volcano in the world. Research into
the ecological responses to its 1980 eruption has fundamentally transformed
not only understanding of volcanoes, but our ability to live alongside
them. Station scientists' key research
findings and expertise are
now in demand in other volcanically active regions of the world, including
Chile and Alaska, proving that lessons learned from Mount St. Helens
are applicable outside of the Pacific Northwest. >>More
Mt. St. Helens Streaming Video
Just two months after Mount St. Helens’ May 18, 1980 eruption, then-22-year-old Charlie Crisafulli was on the ground, conducting research. Now, a research ecologist with the station, he reflects on the ecological research program at the volcano.
Windows Media: 56K | 300K
QuickTime: 56K | 300K