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The Toutle River is a river in southwestern Washingtonmarker State, in the Pacific Northwest region of the United Statesmarker. It rises in two forks on the flanks of Mount St. Helensmarker and joins the Cowlitz River near Castle Rockmarker.

Eruption of Mount St. Helens

The May 18, 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helensmarker and subsequent lahars poured vast amounts of sediment into the Toutle, which was formerly navigable. The US Army Corps of Engineers dredged 85 million m³ (110 million yd³) of sediment from the river and built the US$65 million Sediment Retention Structuremarker on the North Fork of the Toutlemarker to keep it clear in the future. Part of the same engineering works is a tunnel to drain Spirit Lakemarker whose natural outlet was blocked by the eruption.

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