It was the "perfect mountain", a shapely peak dubbed the Fuji of the West. 9,677 feet of snow-capped grandeur in the heart of the Cascade Range. On May 18, 1980 Mt. St. Helens captured the attention of the world with a volcanic display unequaled in modern times. This is the story of the cataclysmic events of that day, and the miraculous resiliency of Nature as life returns out of the ash.