One of my east coast friends was visiting earlier this summer. We spent one day visiting the eastern side of Mount St. Helens....an area of the volcano that I hadn't visited until that day. Whew! There's a road that reaches very close to the crater called Windy Ridge ("windy" as in wind blowing -- and it definitely was blowing!), but the switchbacks in the road to get there left us questioning if it's really "windy" as in "a windy road". In addition, there were many parts of this narrow windy road that were slowly sliding over the sheer cliffs. I was literally driving on the other side of the road for most of the journey back down the windy road.
Nevertheless, this long, but scenic 3-hour trek each way proved itself worthy with the vistas. We had glimpses of mountains Rainier, Adams, and Hood along the way. Much evidence still remains of the 1980 eruption, but it seemed to be more green and filled with more regrowth than the northern side of the mountain. It was nothing short of spectacular to say the least, but I would like to camp in the area the next time and explore some more.