After about 2 hours, I stopped in Pinecrest at the visitors center and talked to the nice lady there to get a map and some idea of what there was to see in the area. She recommended a few "key" sites so off I went.
First stop was the "Trail of Two Forests," a very short 1/4 mile loop trail mostly on boardwalk. A sign at the beginning of the trail stated "You are about to venture through a land of lava, where images of ancient forest are captured in stone. You will follow an ancient lava river that spilled down the flanks of Mount St. Helens nearly 2,000 years ago... you will travel through both an old forest now cast in stone, and an emerald forest that has risen from the black basaltic lava."
Vegetation is growing inside some of the lava/tree holes.
The entrance to the lava tube.
A portion of the board walk and exit from the lava tube.
Next stop was at the Ape Cave Lava Tubes. The short lava tube is about 3/4 of a mile in length and the other about 1.5 miles. Both are accessed via long metal ladders. I ventured into the shorter tube. It was a cool 42 degrees once you got past the entrance area. And dark. The walls of the cave felt slightly damp but cold and were quite smooth. There were several "rocky" areas to be traversed but nothing major. I don't particularly like being in caves so only spent about 30 minutes inside. I'm glad I went but it was enough for me.
Back at the surface I drove on up the road to Lava Canyon.
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Becky Wiseman, "The Trail of Two Forests - August 7th," Kinexxions, posted September 22, 2015 (http://kinexxions.blogspot.com/2015/09/the-trail-of-two-forests-august-7th.html : accessed [access date])