A small child looks at Mt. St. Helens

This mountain is visible from approximately all of Interstate 5 — for about five hundred miles of driving time it floats in and out of view on the horizon.

But the official viewing area, with visitor center and wheelchair-accessible forest walking paths, is still very crowded. It doesn’t feel like you’ve really been there if you just pull off the side of the road any old place; you have to go to the official viewing area.

Not that I can cast any stones there — I stopped at the official viewing area, too.

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