Route: Mt St Helens (WA)

Washington, US
9.3 mi

Mt St Helens (8365') is unusual in that it is basically a "new" mountain since the 1980 eruption which removed 1312' feet from its height. lists 3 main routes, Butte Camp, Worm Flows / Swift Glacier, and Monitor Ridge (shown on the map below).  The latter 2 routes have attracted FKT activity.

You must go to the true summit to count! Just going to the crater rim isn't enough. 

Another challenge on St Helens that has become popular is as follows:  Starting from climbers bivouac, summit Mt. St. Helens via Monitor Ridge. Descend and run either clockwise or counterclockwise around the entire Loowit trail. Summit a second time via Monitor ridge and finish back at climbers bivouac.  The initial idea was to get in a sunrise and then a sunset summit in one day, and the Loowit was the time to space out the two summits.  It has been an informal quasi-event for a few years.



Great speed run on St. Helens, although several years ago now.  However, I reviewed your Strava data and the GPS clearly shows stopping at the volcano rim, and not breaking to the left, descending ~100' and making the final ~200 ft climb to the true summit.  It's an extremely common thing to do, especially if it was foggy, like it looks like it was when you guys climbed. 

I was wondering how you would like to handle this as far as future route attempts go.  The route naturally should go all the way to the summit, and the extra segment from the rim to the summit adds ~8 minutes to the climb, and is the most technical part of the whole route.

Looking for general input in how to deal with this discrepancy.


Thanks for pointing this out.  I agree the FKT should go to the true summit.  Hopefully the next person will do so, while still beating the times of Peter & Patrick from the TH to the false summit, and from the false summit back down.  Please take splits for those!

Tomorrow I am running the wormflow route from Marble Mtn Sno Park.  If conditions permit I will attempt the unsupported FKT.

An update to this - I obviously did not get the FKT.  From what I recall I was ~1m ahead of pace and 60-70% of the way up, but navigated off the route which crippled my chances.  Some other time.

Is there any interest in a Monitor Ridge car-to-car rather than just ascent or do most just glissade down?