Harmony Trail

Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument, Washington

Elevation Gain819ft
Trailhead Elevation4,091ft
Elevation Min/Max3565/4091ft
Elevation Start/End4091/4091ft

Harmony Trail

Harmony Trail is a hiking trail in Skamania County, Washington. It is within Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument. It is 1.3 miles long and begins at 4,091 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 2.2 miles with a total elevation gain of 819 feet. The Harmony Falls Trailhead parking and Harmony Viewpoint Interpretive Site and another viewpoint are near the trailhead.

Harmony Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"Hike from Harmony Viewpoint to the shore of Spirit Lake, all the way passing through landscape and plant communities that are rebuilding and reestablishing themselves after the catastrophic 1980 eruption. This trail is the only legal access to Spirit Lake, still partially covered with floating logs.

Watch for Roosevelt elk (Cervus elaphus roosevelti) all along this trail, especially if you are making your hike early in the season and early in the morning. Even if you don’t see the elk, you will probably see their tracks along the trail. Also look for outcroppings of volcanic rock that are many times older than Mount St. Helens itself, and view places where ancient glaciers have polished and scratched the rock."

"Overlooking the east bay of Spirit Lake, this trail drops from the Harmony Falls viewpoint on gentle switchbacks. Harmony Trail’s name seems appropriate so long after the eruption, but as you hike down this route, you’ll recognize the lack of harmony—in fact, the ultimate chaos— that reigned here years ago. You’ll be awed by the precise pattern of the fallen trees laid low by the huge blast.

The trees lie parallel to each other like matches in a matchbook, pointing away from the volcano’s crater. At the bottom of the trail are volcano-redesigned Spirit Lake and Harmony Falls. Once a beautiful high cascade, Harmony Falls was reduced in height by half. The massive mudflows that accompanied the eruption dammed the outlet of Spirit Lake, raising its water level by 200 feet. The shoreline is rough and treacherous, lined with gritty ash and loose rock."

"From a bluff overlooking Spirit Lake, follow a wellgraded, well-trodden trail down to this famous body of water."

"The Harmony Trail immediately starts to descend from the trailhead. This north-facing slope is covered with low brush and blown-down logs. In a few yards the trail enters the restricted area as it begins a descending traverse to the west. You will pass a tiny waterfall 300 yards farther along. Cross the tiny stream below the falls and then pass beneath an under-cut rock face.

On the far side of the face is another tiny falls and stream. These streams may be dried up by midsummer. The end of the trail offers an excellent view of Mount St. Helens over the lake. Often the mountain reflects in the still water. Harmony Falls Lodge once sat next to the lakeshore, a short distance west of the end of the trail. The site of the old lodge is below the present lake level, which is about 200 feet higher than it was before the May 1980 eruption. Watch for elk all along this trail."

Harmony Trail Reviews

Do you know something we don't know? Help others by leaving a review.

Harmony Trail Photos

Help others discover amazing sights!

Trail Information

Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument
Nearby City
Mount Saint Helens National Volcanic Monument
Skill Level
Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument
Local Contacts
Green Trails Mt St. Helens 332S
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Nov 2018