The Johnston Ridge Observatory interpretive exhibits outline the sequence of geologic events that altered the landscape and created a virtual moonscape at Mount St. Helens. The observatory is the closest visitor center to the volcano, offering spectacular views of the lava dome, crater, pumice plain and landslide deposit.
A wide-screen theater presentation concludes with the drapes being opened to reveal the crater of Mount St. Helens. In the 10,000 square-foot exhibit hall, visitors are taught about the art and science of monitoring a volcano and predicting future eruptions. Visitors are also presented with the remarkable eyewitness accounts from survivors of the volcano's eruption.
Johnston Ridge was named in honor of USGS volcanologist David A. Johnston who was on duty at the USGS, Coldwater II observation post during the May 18, 1980 eruption.
Project Direction: BHL