Family Adventure Camp

Enjoy, explore and learn about Mount St. Helens with the whole family. Activities are designed for youth, adults, and intergenerational teams.  We will hike and play, create art, and get nerdy about the geology and ecology of Mount St. Helens.  Both indoor and outdoor sleeping options are available. 

LEARN MORE

Schedule & Activities

Locations

Lodging


Family Adventure Camp Information

WHO

Families with youth of all ages.  We welcome families of all ages, backgrounds, and structures.  ​We welcome children and families with special needs, please contact learn@mshinstitute.org to discuss accommodations.   Children are the responsibility of a parent or guardian at all times.

WHAT

We will hike, play, create art, and get nerdy about the geology and ecology of Mount St. Helens in the blast zone!

WHERE

Mount St. Helens Science and Learning Center: 19000 Spirit Lake Highway, Milepost 43.3 State Route 504, Toutle, WA 98649

WHEN

2 sessions: July 14-15, 2018 & August 11-12, 2018

HOW

$80/camper

Youth 4 years of age and younger may attend at no additional charge.  After you register the other members of your family, we will send a link to register additional campers age 4 years and younger for free. 

A limited number of need-based scholarships are available.  Click HERE to complete the financial aid application.

For lunch on arrival day, you may either: 1) bring lunch for your family or 2) eat lunch provided by Mount St. Helens Institute for $10/person.  Either way, you are welcome to eat outside or inside the Science and Learning Center during check-in and setup from 11:30 am-12:30 pm.  The Science and Learning Center has both outdoor and indoor dining spaces. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Program Policies

For more information: Email learn@mshinstitute.org


Schedule & Activities*

*Please note that our staff may change the schedule at any time. This is a general example. 2018's specific Family Adventure Camp schedules will be created at a later date.

DAY 1

  • 11:30: Campers arrive at the SLC, settle in
  • 12:30: Introductions, expectations, and information
  • 1:30:  1980 Eruption Story
  • 2:00: Large group activity
  • 3:00: Choose-Your-Own-Adventure #1: hiking, arts & crafts, games, and/or science activity options available
  • 4:00: Choose-Your-Own-Adventure #2: hiking, arts & crafts, games, and/or science activity options available
  • 5:00 Large group activity
  • 6:00 Dinner
  • 7:00 Choose-Your-Own-Adventure #3: hiking, arts & crafts, games, and/or science activity options available
  • 8:00: Crepuscular Hike
  • 9:00: Storytime
  • 10:00 Stargazing (weather-permitting) and night crafts
  • 11:00: All-camper quiet time

Bedtime for youth will be determined by camper parent/guardians.  Any indoor activities after 8 pm will be quiet activities to accommodate any campers going to bed early.

DAY 2

  • 7:00: Coffee, art and games available
  • 7:30: Breakfast
  • 8:30: Choose-Your-Own-Adventure #4: hiking, arts & crafts, games, and/or science activity options available
  • 9:30: Break down camp/pack up/get ready for day, pack lunches
  • 10:30: Coldwater Lake activity
  • 12:00: Lunch at Coldwater Lake picnic area
  • 12:30: Choose-Your-Own-Adventure #5: several hiking options available
  • 3:00: Camp ends

Locations

Science & Learning Center

  • The SLC is a re-purposed visitor center in the heart of the blast zone and just 10 miles from Johnston Ridge Observatory. Campers will lodge and dine at the SLC.
  • Site is wheel-chair accessible.
  • Learn more about the facilities at the SLC here
  • View location of SLC in Google Maps.

Hummocks Trail

  • Some Volcano Venture programs may include exploration on the Hummocks Trail.
  • The Hummocks are the landforms which formed during the 1980 eruption as the top of Mount St. Helens fell apart in a giant landslide the pieces of the old mountaintop slowed and stopped downvalley. The Hummocks Trail is a 2.7 mile loop trail which winds up and down through the hummocks, passing habitat which established after the 1980 eruption.
  • The Hummocks Trail parking lot is about a 10-minute drive from the Science & Learning Center.
  • View location of Hummocks Trail in Google Maps.

Coldwater Lake

  • Some Volcano Venture programs may include a visit to Coldwater Lake to eat lunch, conduct an aquatic study, or otherwise explore this incredible lake which formed as a result of the 1980 eruption.
  • Coldwater Lake sits in the valley adjacent to the Science & Learning Center. The Coldwater Lake vicinity includes a picnic area, restrooms, and the 0.6 mile interpretive “Birth of a Lake” boardwalk trail.
  • Coldwater Lake is about a 10-minute drive from the Science & Learning Center.
  • View location of the Coldwater Lake Picnic Area in Google Maps.

Lodging

Campers will sleep either  inside the Science & Learning Center or at our nearby field camp.

SLEEP INSIDE

  • Campers will sleep in one of our two bunk rooms.
  • Our two bunkrooms (with a total of 26 total beds), as well as numerous large rooms.
  • There are centrally located bathrooms with hot water but there are no showers.

SLEEP OUTSIDE

  • Field camp offers spectacular views of Mount St. Helens, Coldwater Lake, and the Mount Margaret back-country.
  • 19 tent pads are available.
  • The site includes picnic tables and benches, a portable toilet.
  • The site has NO running water.  
  • Fires are not permitted.
  • Learn more about this beautiful site here.