- Aug 31, 2018
I made it up to Mt. St. Helens NVM before they shut down the entire Western side of the Monument on Monday, and hiked way out up a ridge to get a view of where a landslide took out the bridge on SR 504. Folks, this is going to take a long time to repair!
My guess is that record high temps coupled with an unusually large snow pack resulted in an abnormally large quantity of meltwater saturating the unstable volcanic debris, leading to the landslide which can be seen above the washed-out highway in the video. I spoke with DOT people while I was out there, and they were concerned that further landslides were possible, which is probably why they later closed the road at MP 43, effectively closing this entire portion of the Monument. The giant thunderstorm which rolled in to drop massive quantities of rain just after I left probably didn't help the situation, and there's a ton of snow left up there still to melt.
This video was captured with the DJI Mavic 3 Pro and the Nikon Z9. The Mavic 3 Pro was particularly helpful, as I was able to maintain a safe distance from the area and crews working to assess the damage by taking full advantage of both the optical 7X camera as well 14x and 28x digital zoom.