The Ape Caves

I had heard about the Ape Caves, formed from lava about 2,000 years ago, from a friend a while back. Just this week two friends and I got together and hiked the length of the upper cave. It was so cool. We bought our pass, got there, and went to find the entrance.

The entrance to the Ape Caves. There are crude stairs, and moss.

We were a little confused and ended up wandering/backtracking to figure out where to go. Eventually we went in the main cave, down some stairs, and behind the staircase. We came to a large room and the entrance we wanted was on the far right of the far wall. It took a bit of wandering to find this.

There are quite a few things to maneuver around, and there were two parts where it took someone strong to give us a hand up. I'd recommend going with someone strong, otherwise, I'm not sure how you'd do those parts. There wasn't much to speak of for handholds or footholds there.

And I'd recommend bringing a headlamp as one of your sources of light. I liked not having to worry about the flashlight attached to my wrist and just have my headlamp for a few parts.

The cave is completely dark except for the entrance, one skylight, and the exit, so we didn't take too many pictures.

The one skylight in the caves bring light down to show off the mist and moss.

The sunlight from the skylight allows you to see a bit into the cave without your headlamp/flashlight.

The metal ladder leading up to the exit of the caves.

And finally, a view of Mt. St. Helens from the trail above the caves.

You can just barely see Mt. St. Helens in the distance over some trees.


I'd recommend trying it sometime. It was fantastic. You can find information about it online.