This hike has been cancelled.
I am cancelling the hike due to another group of 40, going up to the Ape Cave on a "party bus for outdoor drinking activities," to quote the Meet Up announcement. I'm sorry for the inconvenience, but I don't think it would be a good idea to go up there when another large group is planning on doing the same hike at the same time. If you are interested in their arrangements please go to the following link:
Hike: Ape Cave (Indoor Hike) , Mt. St. Helens area
Date: Sunday, July 14,[masked]:00 AM
DIFFICULTY RATING: Moderate
TOTAL MILES: 3 mile loop
ESTIMATED HIKING TIME: 3-4 hours
ELEVATION GAIN: 400 feet
APPROXIMATE RETURN TIME: 5 PM, depending on the size of the group
WEATHER FORECAST: Almost immaterial, we will be in the cave most of the hike
PERMITS: Northwest Forest Pass
$$$: Bring money for gas and an optional Sierra Club donation.
Suggested voluntary donation for outing: $2.00.
CARPOOLING: RT mileage is approximately 100 miles; we suggest a mileage donation of 10 cents/mile/person or whatever the driver agrees to.
Note-this is a carbon neutral outing, $.25/person from outings donation is used to offset carbon released for the trip.
Route Description: Tired of hiking in the blistering sunshine? For a change of pace, join us on this “indoor hike” in the dark of the Ape Cave in the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.
This is the third longest lava tube in North America. We will be doing the more rugged upper section of the cave, where we will traverse 10 major rock falls, scramble up an 8’ foot headwall, and pass through a “squeeze” slot. Then we will pass the skylight and soon come to the metal ladder that leads out of the cave. Come prepared for a chilly day, it’s a steady 42 degrees in the cave. The trail back to the parking lot is a quick 1.2 miles, so we won’t get too sunburned.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
At least two sources of light. Headlight is best.
· Water (min 2 quarts/person)
· Lunch and snacks
· Sturdy, water resistant hiking boots
· A water-resistant hat, Rain jacket and pants (it may be dripping in the cave)
· Two or three light layers of clothing that can be adjusted or removed as necessary
· 2 sources of light, headlamp and/or flashlight
· Matches (stored in a water tight container in addition to matches or a butane lighter) matches are not a suitable second source of light
· First aid supplies (be sure to include an extra day of any medication you are taking or might
· Pocket knife
· Fire starter (can be candles, chemical fire starter, backpack size fire logs)
Other items (as appropriate)
· Bring rain gear and warm layers
· Gloves or mittens and stocking cap
· Trekking poles
· Extra food