Just discovered that Windy Ridge has finally been repaired enough to open so all you Mt. Saint Helens fans can rejoice.
I may do a mid week trip before the Winthrop fete on the weekend.
I also checked out PWNRiders to get their take on it. The consensus is the stretch from entrance of Windy Ridge northward through and out of the park is a POS. "Suitable for motards" is a common remark. For those that know the area that is the route through Randle which has always been questionable. The southern entrances to the park have always been much better road wise and the roads are infinitely more interesting.
Here's the press release on it's opening:
For Immediate Release: July 01, 2009 Contact: Peter Frenzen (360) 449-7835 or Roger Peterson (360) 891-5007
Windy Ridge at Mount St. Helens to Open for July 4th Weekend
Road and Trail Repair Work Scheduled for the South Side of Mount St. Helens
VANCOUVER, WA - Forest Road 99, which provides access to the popular Windy Ridge and Spirit Lake viewpoints on the east side of the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, will open in time for the July 4th holiday weekend.
The road to Windy Ridge was closed during the summer of 2008 due to damage resulting from heavy snow pack and storms during the winter of 2007-08. Thanks to hard work by Forest road crews and the Federal Highway Administration, visitors will once again be able to experience this amazing landscape on the east side of the National Volcanic Monument.
Near Windy Ridge, the Cascade Peaks viewpoint will offer visitors interpretive exhibits and materials, snacks and drinks, recreation passes and will provide visitor information. The facility at Cascade Peaks will be open Thursday thru Monday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. starting July 9 through Labor Day. Roving interpretive rangers will be greeting visitors at interpretive sites along Forest Road 99 during the weekends from early July through Labor Day.
On the south side of the National Volcanic Monument work is beginning to repair sites damaged by recent winter storms.
Lava Canyon trail closing for repairs:
Starting July 2 the Lava Canyon trail on the south side of the National Volcanic Monument will be closed and will remain closed for several weeks while repairs are made to the trail. Visitors will still be able to access the Ape Canyon Trailhead on the south side on the mountain. Crews will be rebuilding sections of the trail and reconstructing upper Lava Canyon Trail Bridge. This work is being partially funded through a project which was approved by the South Gifford Pinchot Resource Advisory Committee under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000.
Work will also be getting underway soon to repair a section of Forest Road 81 east of the Kalama horse camp which was severely impacted by flooding during a record rainfall event in November of 2006.