Field Seminars

Since 2000, our field seminars have helped educate hundreds of people about the wild wonders of Mount St. Helens. We’ve taken people exploring on the Pumice Plain, led them to the volcano’s summit, showed them the stars, and shared with them the history of the eruption and how it changed the land. Our seminars are taught by highly experienced instructors who are passionate about their topic and eager to share their knowledge with the public. Seminars are open to all ages. Youth under 14 must be accompanied by an adult.

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Program Policies



April 20-21 - NOLS Wilderness First Aid at the Science and Learning Center

For a detailed course info PDF, click HERE

Meeting Location: Mount St. Helens Science and Learning Center

Difficulty: Accessible

Minimum Age: 16+ (minors must be accompanied by adult)

Tuition: $343

Whether spending time in the backcountry is your passion or your profession, you should never have to ask, "What do I do now?" Prepare for the unexpected with this fun, hands-on introduction to wilderness medicine. If you like to take short trips relatively close to medical resources, work at camps or lead wilderness trips, enjoy weekend family outdoor activities, or recreate outdoors, this course is for you. You'll learn the Patient Assessment System, how to provide effective first aid treatments for injuries and illnesses common in the outdoors, how to manage environmental emergencies, and how to make appropriate evacuation decisions. You will spend half your time practicing skills and participating in realistic scenarios.

Upon successful course completion you will earn the following NOLS Wilderness Medicine certifications: Wilderness First Aid, Epinephrine Auto-injector, and on courses with the CPR module, Adult and Child CPR & Airway Management.

Registration includes the course, homemade meals, and shared lodging Saturday and Sunday. Option to arrive Friday includes dinner, extra night of lodging, and Saturday breakfast.

April 20-21

Awesome Hike - multiple dates


10 miles

Elevation Gain: 2000 ft (loss 3700 ft)

Meeting Location: Johnston Ridge Observatory

Difficulty: Strenuous

Minimum Age: 12+ (minors must be accompanied by adult)

Tuition: $82

Perhaps the most spectacular trail system in the Mount St. Helens area, this challenging 10 mile hike from Johnston Ridge Observatory winds through the heart of the blast zone in the Mount Margaret Backcountry, past Coldwater Peak, and along south Coldwater Ridge. You’ll see spectacular wildflower displays, stunning views of St. Helens Lake and Spirit Lake, and twisted logging equipment: all reminders of the destructive and renewing powers of this great volcano. And at the end of the day, we’ll shuttle the group back to Johnston Ridge from Coldwater Lake. Guided by the Mount St. Helens Institute complete with geology and biology lessons, this will be a day you won’t soon forget!

July 27
August 10
August 31
September 14

Mushroom Foraging - multiple dates

Meeting Location: Pine Creek Information Station

Difficulty: Easy

Minimum Age: 8+ (minors must be accompanied by adult)

Tuition: $82

Come explore the magical kingdom of fungi! Learn how to identify common characteristics of wild edible and inedible mushrooms. Then learn how to harvest many different types of edible mushrooms and cook them into delicious dishes. Plan to get your shoes and hands dirty as you discover the forest's most striking and sometimes delectable offerings.

September 28
October 5
October 6
October 12
October 13
October 20