We finally made it the 1.5 hours up to Mount St. Helens the weekend before last. Having just visited Crater Lake in the summertime, this was really different than we were expecting. The signs that do exist all look old and poorly maintained, and there isn’t really anywhere to stop and learn more. We just went to the south end, though, so maybe we’ll have a better time on another trip someday. We did some of the Lava Canyon Trail and it was really beautiful. Afterward, we explored the Ape Caves, the longest lava tube in the continental US. It was… way creepier than I thought it would be? Nat loved it, and I thought it was really cool at first, walking through this completely dark tunnel with some other people with flashlights. But then the tunnel started to feel like it was going on forever, and we hadn’t seen another person in either direction for a while, so we turned around. I guess I’m more of a fan of caves in the midwest… where they make them some of the absolute corniest tourist attractions around. I’d go back to the Ape Caves someday, with a big group of friends and better prepared than we were with the dinky flashlight I happen to keep in my backpack.

Also, we saw a roadkill beaver. I think I have only ever seen a beaver in the wild one other time, and it was also dead on the side of the road ? They’re so neat looking!

On Wednesday we head out of town for five days for the Thanksgiving holiday. I’m so looking forward to disappearing from everything for a few days.