Out of the mouth of a volcano comes new life. It's a long process, though, and one we don't normally get to observe firsthand. Mt. St. Helens, however, is an obvious exception. It's a living laboratory displaying just how it is that nature heals itself in the wake of a cataclysm like the May 18, 1980 eruption that killed 57 and caused billions of dollars in damage in Washington state. In this image, a fire-blasted stump contrasts with July wildflowers to offer up a life and death contrast straight from the crater. The mountain still stands, but the landscape around her is changing all the time.

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