This trail should actually be called "Maude and Lottie Lakes and Seven Lakes Trail Loop", because it doesn't actually follow the Seven Lakes trail all the way around, and the signs on the trees reflect this.

I decided to hike this as a day trip starting from Stanley Hot Springs, because I was already there and the AllTrails map cuts through the hot springs. For some odd reason, the map starts from the middle of the Stanley Hot Springs trail (not the trailhead), so the distance measurements and elevation gain are inaccurate.

I started recording my trip on the AllTrails app at the location where the trail forks off into the loop. What I thought would be a short day-trip ended up turning into a 7-hour trek across 10 miles and a miserable 4200 foot elevation change. I barely made it back to the campsite before sunset, but not before I was soaking wet from rain-soaked overgrown foliage that covered this poorly maintained trail.

While the views were pretty nice at the higher elevation areas, there are some major problems with this trail that prevent me from ever recommending this trail to anyone. Firstly, there are no switchbacks. You're just going straight up and down sheer mountainsides perpendicular to the topographical lines. This is abhorrent. Second, the trail is completely overgrown with foliage when following the Seven Lakes side of the loop, and it's very easy to lose the trail. The overgrowth is also sure to make your clothes and shoes soaked if it has rained recently. I spent about 1.5 - 2 hours trudging through dense overgrowth. Someone really needs to go in with a machete and clean the place up.

Was it worth it? No. But I did see a pine marten, I guess.