When Mount St. Helens erupted on May 18, 1980, the resulting blast cloud snapped off huge trees for 150 square miles around the mountain. At the same time an avalanche of mud sped down from the top of the mountain into Spirit Lake, causing a wave almost 900 feet high which scraped trees from the slopes adjacent to the lake. Many of these trees ended up in Spirit Lake buried at various levels on the bottom as they slowly sank in an upright position after becoming water-logged. Scuba investigation and side-scanning sonar have identified up to 100,000 upright deposited tree stumps buried at various levels of ash and peat deposits at the bottom of Spirit Lake. Since Mount St. Helens continues to be active (depositing more material in the lake with time) these upright trees will be buried in what looks like separate geological layers, even though they all came from the same forest.

Years from now if sediment were to fill the lake and bury the trees in such a way that they became petrified in their present positions, these trees would look like multiple forests buried on top of each other over tens of thousands of years. This is exactly what was assumed to be the origin of the petrified forest at Yellowstone National Park's Specimen Ridge. Many geologists now acknowledge that the Yellowstone petrified trees were from the same standing forest transported into their current positions by a massive flood catastrophe.

From A Closer Look at the Evidence by Kleiss, October 13.

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