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height 2549 meters or 8364 feet - 9677 feet before May 18 1980Number of eruptions in past 200 years 2-3Latest Eruptions Between 1660-1700 around 1800-1802 1831 1835 1842-1844 1847-1854 1857 1980-Present thermal activity strong steamingRemarks continuous intermittent activity since 1980 with occasional eruptions of steam and ash occasional pyroclastic flows intermittent dome formingMSH is considered a young volcano that developed over the last 40000 years and is one of the most active volcanoes in the Cascade Range Geologists predicted that the volcano would erupt before the year 2000 The May 18 1980 eruption of Mount SH was the most destructive in the history of the United States In a matter of hours MSH caused loss of lives and widespread destruction of valuable property because of the avalanche lateral blast and mudflows On March 20 1980 starting with an earthquake that was followed by many others MSH became active again after a quiet period of 123 years On March 27 1980 there was a huge explosion and MSH began blowing ash and steam This lasted until May 14 1980 The explosion in March opened up two craters that quickly became one huge crater While this was happening an enormous bulge on the north side of the mountain top appeared It grew about six feet each day Geologist kept measuring the bulge recording the earthquakes and sampling the ash and gases By May the bulge was 300 feet wide and more than one mile in length On May 18 at 832 in the morning Mount St Helens erupted taking the top 1200 feet off the volcano The eruption went on until nightfall The area of destruction was 230 square miles and was one of the largest landslides ever recorded in history The blast was preceded by two months of intense activity that included over 10000 earthquakes hundreds of small phreatic steam blasts explosions and the north side bulge A magnitude 51 earthquake below the
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