This photographer has an uneasy connection to this notorious Volcanic Peak.. One of his best friends was lost during the mountain's 1980 explosion. That young man's first name was also Bruce......... He, the green Subaru he was driving, and his Martin Guitar were last seen hiking upward during the afternoon of May 17th a few miles above Weyerhauser's logging camp called Camp Baker, on the North Fork of the Toutle River (the Mountain's west side)..He had told friends that his plan was to get acquainted with the 83 year old Mr. Harry Truman at Spirit Lake... Neil Young was Bruce's favorite musician. Follow this link to a listing of all the known Eruption Victims.
In an additional irony, both Bruces might have been taken to Eternity by the Mountain on that day.
The blue x in the image above marks the approximate place where this photographer would have been standing on that fateful morning when Mt. St. Helens erupted---- now 25 years ago. He'd had a climb planned which would have placed him at 7,500 ft. on the feature named the Dogshead at 8:32a.m. Sunday. That was the fateful moment when the mountain blew out its entire northern side into Spirit Lake....and reduced itself to an ugly, gray dwarf.......
Oregonphotos is here today because Bruce Johnson, for once, had listened to his elders and been reluctantly persuaded to cancel the climb by Forest Service authorities.......... Years later, here is his "Thank You." S
In addition to having climbed both St. Helens and Mt. Adams, the photographer spent over four years living in Goldendale, Washington, a small, sun-drenched town just east of the Cascades, blessed with the grand presence of Mt. Adams across spacious wheatfields.... At 12,276 ft, "Adams" is the second highest moutain in all of The Pacific Northwest. Indian legend tells us how two jealous Indian chiefs vyed for the favors of the beautiful maiden. Their terrible conflict was noticed with disfavor by the great Spirit Sahale, who struck all three lovers down, but then raised a beautiful mountain memorial over where each had fallen. The two chiefs are marked by Mt. Adams and Mt. Hood, while the maiden's spot is marked by Mt. St. Helens, which formerly enjoyed wide fame as one of the most beautiful mountains in the World (see pre-eruption picture above). For the complete legend, please visit this U.S. Forest Service site: Complete Mountain Legend.
Goldendale, Washington., Klickitat County. A quiet place where pines and oaks meet the wheatfields, and the morning sun lights up the high ice peaks for another day. Don't miss the public viewing through the 24 inch telescope at Goldendale Observatory State Park if you visit this area! You'll find it on an oak-covered hill on the north side of town. Amateur astronomy groups from Portland and Vancouver often make field trips out to this area, as do Clubs and school groups for other areas of Eastern Washington and the Columbia Gorge. Pullman, WA