Summit Climbs

Questions? Email or call (360) 207-1675

Date sold out?  Join our waitlist here!

“Everything from start to finish of the trip was fantastic! The guides were really great - welcoming, encouraging and knowledgeable. They respected each person's abilities and encouraged us to push our comfort levels to try something new. I learned so much more about the mountain and acquired some basic mountaineering skills. ~Linda, July 2023 “A terrific experience for a first climb. I learned a lot from the guides, and feel I have new skills to build on for future climbs. It was a very taxing day but the positive attitude and support from the guides and volunteer were fantastic." ~J., July 2023 “The experience was absolutely amazing. The guides were so great! They were encouraging, supportive, knowledgeable, motivating, patient, professional and great leaders throughout the entire trip. I truly feel I could not have made it to the summit without their guidance." ~Adrian, Sept 2023

Classic Summit Climb Overview

Embark on a remarkable journey to the summit of Mount St. Helens with our guided group adventures. Carefully designed for both novice climbers and experienced mountaineers, this is a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the majestic beauty of one of the Pacific Northwest's most iconic active Cascade volcanoes. Our knowledgeable mountain guides will enrich your experience with insights into the area's natural and cultural history. Experience the awe-inspiring Mount St. Helens in harmony with the land.

Summit Climb with a Geologist Overview

Discover the extraordinary geology of Mount St. Helens firsthand on our geologist-led summit climb. As you make your way up Monitor Ridge to the rim of the volcano, our professional geologist will guide you through the complex and fascinating geologic story of Mount St. Helens. This unique adventure seamlessly combines the love of climbing and geology, perfect for those who wish to experience the majesty of Mount St. Helens in a deeper, more intimate way.

  • Minimum Age: 10 (minors must be accompanied by an adult the entire adventure)
  • Maximum Group Size: 10
  • Permits: Fee includes a climbing permit.
  • Meeting Location:  Based on season road closures, but typically:
  • Duration: 6:00 AM ~ 6:00 PM
  • Classic Summit Climb Cost: $288 / person. 
  • Summit with a Geologist: $298 / person.


  Winter Route (June - early July) Summer Route (July - Sept)
Distance 9.6 miles (15.4 km)  round-trip 8.5 miles (13.6 km) round-trip
Elevation Gain 5,500 ft (1,676 m) 4,500 ft (1,371 m)
Location Marble Mountain Sno-Park Climber's Bivouac Trailhead


We strongly recommend that you conduct training hikes or routines before you climb Mount St. Helens. Your fitness will be the best indicator of your enjoyment of the experience and your success on the climb. See our suggested training hikes.

Additional Information

Route Descriptions
Program Policies
Suggested Packing List
Training Hikes
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Mount St. Helens Institute operates under a special use permit from the US Forest Service and is honored to work on the Traditional Cultural Property, ancestral and present-day lands of the Cowlitz Indian Tribe and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation. Mount St. Helens Institute is an equal opportunity provider.