You won't be disappointed if you take the time to pull into the smaller of the two main Mt. St. Helens visitor centers (Johnson Ridge has a clear view of the eruption site side of the volcano and is the mother of all visitor centers). We stopped in to check into the helicopter tours, and decided to go. Our pilot was fantastic, and we flew, yes flew, into the center of the crater 8,000 feet high, in the mouth of Mt. St. Helens! We saw steaming lava domes and hovered in the sky at the point where the mountain was, 9,600 feet high, before the 1980 eruption. The vistas were unbelievable. I, yes even I, was speechless. Awed.
My daughter is six, and had the time of her life. She is a volcano enthusiast and we were there to see and learn about volcanos where real volcanos were, and not from our living room.
On the headphones, while in the helicopter, as it was taking off for the live, steaming volcano, I heard my daughter's sweet little voice in my headphone earpiece: "You are the coolest Mom ever!"
That, and a helicopter ride into Mt. St. Helens, too...I almost imploded with excitement.
PS We got all our gifts in their great little gift shop, way way better than the few offerings at Johnson Ridge.