Johnston Ridge Observatory and Ape Cave plan on opening the week of May 18th for 2023. We are still working through what this year will look like for school groups with our limited staffing. Please make a special request if you would like to bring your group. Please note that all services may not be available –please come prepared for your visit. Practice social distancing at trailheads and all developed recreation areas.
Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument was established to promote environmental and science education.
Each year, over 10,000 students travel to Mount St. Helens to see the dramatic effects of the 1980 volcanic eruption, and observe how plants and animals have responded.
Visit the Volcano!
Some groups travel to Johnston Ridge Observatory on Washington State Route 504 from the west side of the Monument.
Other schools visit attractions on the Monument’s south and east sides, including: Lahar Viewpoint, Ape Cave, Trail of Two Forests, and Windy Ridge (many are only accessible in the fall). All of these areas offer different educational opportunities and experiences.
School groups visit May through June and September through October, when field trip sites are accessible. For more information on school visit dates and available programs, please visit the School Visit Details page.
Follow the instructions below to register your school group.