Mt. St. Helens Emits Plume of Ash, Steam
Mt. St. Helens spewed a plume of ash and steam up to 25,000 feet Wednesday evening, the first eruptive activity at the volcano in about 10 months.
Geologist Richard Waitt of the U.S. Geological Survey called it a gas and ash emission, but said it was not classified as an eruption because the mountain was not producing lava or spitting out large amounts of stones or ash.
A plume of gas with some ash in it rose to 20,000 to 25,000 feet above sea level at about 5:15 p.m., Waitt said.
“This does not mean an eruption is going on. Steam and ash plumes used to be fairly common at Mt. St. Helens,” said Jim Zolig, a seismologist with the USGS in Seattle.
The University of Washington’s Geophysics Department called it “a modest steam and ash event.”