Lynn and Dan pre-hiked this loop through the North and South Blue Lake Groups.
The drive to the TH was interesting. We were trying to determine if a shortcut that is on older topos but is no longer present on newer topos or other maps was still passable. The answer is no. The road heading east from FS 570 is still there, but is now impassable due to poor road bed and plant overgrowth.
So, the correct directions to the TH are here. Drive time is 90 minutes and it is 120 miles RT.
The day was memorable for two things: mosquitos and the hot climb out from the lakes basin. The Blue Canyon trail drops down through a nice forest to the lakes area. We went past Round Lake and Blue Lake and then decided, because it was so early, to head over to Horseshoe Lake.
We invested some sweat equity on the Meadow Lake trail as we worked our way back up to the ridge. Somewhat confusing trail junction with the Cathill Way trail but we found our way and headed back towards the TH. Nice views southward from here along the ridge of Mt. McLoughlin and points south.
We decided to have our lunch atop Blue Rock which is a mile or so further north from the Saddle Campground over a very rough road. However great views of Crater Rim, Thielsen and Bachelor to the north and McLoughlin to the south.