Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument is A little off the beaten path, but definitely worth the drive. Take Highway 504 East off the 5 Freeway directly into the park and start at the visitors center. Mt. St. Helens blasted onto the global scene when she erupted unexpectedly May 18, 1980. There are several visitor centers so I am not sure which one we hit, but I assume it was the main one because there was such a wonderful and extensive display. Young and old can take the time to understand what happens when a volcano erupts and the consequences for wildlife, the surrounding landscape and for cities near and far. Very educational and humbling. People can control a lot, but they cannot control mother nature.
Mt. St. Helen