If you’re heading to Johnston Ridge Observatory to see Mount St. Helens, you must stop at the North Fork Survivors Gift Shop. It’s worth any little detour you may have to take.
Found just off Hwy 504 (Spirit Lake Memorial Highway) is one of the LARGEST Bigfoot statues we have ever seen! (My sister thinks it looks like Bigfoot needs to pee really bad.)
As a reference in the picture below: my husband is 6′ 7″ tall. So… yeah… Mr. Bigfoot is ginormous.
After your visit with Bigfoot, walk around the North Forks Survivors Gift Shop. It has some hilarious Mount St. Helens souvenirs and a bunch of cool Bigfoot oddities like foot molds, sighting stories and even some of his hair!
It was about here that the kids minds were blown. 🙂
My oldest boys spent so much time going through this gift shop. They loved the store’s book titled “Your Sasquatch Experience”. Visitors of the gift shop could share their personal accounts of Bigfoot sightings!
Another amazing and surreal piece of history is the buried A-frame home just outside the gift shop. Once upon a time you could tour the ruined house, but the rising ground has made entrance impossible at this point. I loved the historic pictures of the home to reference just how overwhelming and destructive Mount St. Helens eruption on May 18, 1980 really was. The family that bought this home didn’t even have a chance to live in it before the eruption.
The inside of the home still has beds, appliances and more. After the great eruption, Mount St. Helens sent a river of mud flowing in to this A-frame home filling it with 200 tons of silt, mud and ash.
My boys peeking through the upstairs window.
I’m grateful my children were able to see this historic site. It can be hard for young ones (and even me!) to understand what a volcanic eruption really means for those that live near the volcano. They think of cool lava and plumes spraying in to the air. This home made the terrible tragedy a little more real and helped them understand the devastation Washington residents experienced.
There are camping spots near the shop and a wide open field where you could stop to enjoy a quiet break or picnic.
This visit was a last minute “hey check this out!” and I’m so glad we did. I hope your travels and adventures allow time for spontaeous sight seeing because our world and humans are pretty amazing. A 28 foot tall Bigfoot?! Come on! So cool!
North Fork Survivors Gift Shop
Address: Hwy 504, Kid Valley, WA
I-5 exit 49, head east on Hwy 504 (Spirit Lake Memorial Highway) 20 miles. About a mile east of the intersection of Hwy 505 at mile post 20.5.
OTHER NEARBY SIGHTS TO SEE:
Mount St. Helen’s Miracle Survivor Car
Mount St. Helen’s Forest Learning Center
Mount St. Helen’s National Volcanic Monument in Silver Lake
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