Trail #224 Harmony
Named for a now-submerged waterfall (Harmony Falls), this steep, one-mile trail begins at Harmony Falls Viewpoint and ends on the shore of Spirit Lake. The semi-barren hillside you descend and surrounding landscape was blanketed by old growth forests, pre-eruption. Huge trees were swept away or toppled by the lateral blast of the May 1980 eruption.
On May 18th, the north side of St. Helens collapsed, slamming into Spirit Lake. The resulting “tidal” wave surged 800 feet up the opposite shore, dragging toppled trees into the lake as the water returned. Those trees still float on the lake surface. The avalanche filled the base of the lake, raising the lake level 200 feet, and submerging Harmony Falls, and the site of rustic Harmony Falls Lodge.
At a Glance
|Current Conditions:||07/17/2023: Harmony Trail is open. Due to a landslide of Forest Road 25, Randle and Forest Road 99 will be inaccessible from Cougar this summer. Learn More.|
|Fees:||$5/vehicle/day or valid Recreation Pass required at Harmony Falls Viewpoint. See Mount St. Helens Map for fee and payment sites.|
|Closest Towns:||Randle, WA|
|Operated By:||Forest Service|
From Cougar WA take Lewis River Road east for 2.8 miles. The road then changes to Forest Road 90. Continue on FR 90 for 16 miles and stay to the left on Forest Road 25, pass the Pine Creek Information Center. Drive FR 25 for 25 miles to the junction of Forest Road 99. Turn left onto FR 99 towards Windy Ridge. Drive approximately 13.5 miles to Harmony Viewpoint. Trail starts from here.
Map showing recreational areas. Map Information
Day HikingRecreation areas with activity Day Hiking:
Hiking this trail offers the opportunity to find a changed shoreline, altered by the effects of the 1980 debris avalanche and lateral blast. When the debris avalanche slammed into the lake, a “tidal” wave surged 800 feet up the opposite shore. As the wave crashed back down it swept the already blown down trees into the lake. The resulting log mat drifts with the wind on the lake surface. The debris avalanche created a dam at the lake outlet ultimately raising the water level. The level of Spirit Lake is now controlled by the 1.7-mile man-made tunnel that drains into South Coldwater Creek.