Debate over Mount St. Helens: Should it be a national park?

Aug 18, 2009 — When Mount St. Helens erupted nearly 30 years ago, it flattened more than 150 square miles of forest, spewed millions of tons of mud and debris, filled the sky with ash and left at least 57 people dead. In the process, it also created an unusual outdoor laboratory where researchers have worked ever since to answer an increasingly urgent question: How do landscapes recover after violent disturbance? But now the work is caught up in a debate over management of the mountain, designated after the eruption as the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. Some say the 110,000-acre monument should be a national park.  full story