Explore the most popular camping trails near Blue River with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The rock slide in FR19 is still there and it doesn't sound like there is a plan for clearing it anytime soon, so find an alternative route.

also, the trail is closed from the south entrance near Frissell Crossing Campground, so try to enter from the north.

pretty hike, though

backpacking
25 days ago

Hiked the loop clockwise starting from the Green Lakes TH last week. The entire east side is snow-free from South Matthieu Lake until a good way up the climb to Green Lakes pass. The PCT is open again after the fires, but still under a lot of snow. We were only the second set of tracks, so if you hike it this early, bring a good GPS.

Beautiful, though!

Lots of people at blue pool but it's gorgeous!

Great trail! We did it on a Monday so there weren't any crowds, though after sitting at the Blue Pool for about 20min the crowds started coming from the opposite direction. Like one of the other reviews said, not a hard hike, but it is 12mi round trip so be ready for that.
We put our feet in the water at Clear Lake when we got back, had a beer and then hit the road. A great day!

backpacking
1 month ago

Did a quick overnight to Olallie Mountain. The road in is fine. I came in from 126 and took 19 down to the damn and crossed over, following 1993 all the way to the trailhead without any problem. The trail itself wasn't in too bad of shape for the early season. Some blow downs to traverse due to the fire here last year. The burn is patchy hear and there alternating with green. Views from the top were pretty spectacular as you can see the whole forest basin between Olallie and the three sisters. I'm sure this is why the lookout tower is here. There aren't many good flat spots on top to pitch a tent and the ground is really rocky making a free standing tent a better option. Quick hike with great views.

Was an amazing hike. Waterfalls, clear lake, and blue pool all in a day! What more can you ask for. All in all not very hard, but pretty long. Would recommend.

backpacking
5 months ago

A few friends and I backpacked this loop last August. We entered at the Devil’s lake trailhead and proceeded counter clockwise from there. We made it as far as camp lake which is a amazing side trip and worth the extra distance. Unfortunately, we were diverted from there due to a large wildfire north of Camp Lake. Rangers had closed the entire west side of the loop and were rerouting PCT hikers east and then south to avoid problems. We ended up circumnavigating Broken Top and cut the trip short. I will most certainly be going back to finish this loop. Be sure to secure permits for the Obsidian area in advance of your trip, they’re limited.

backpacking
5 months ago

Loved Three-Sisters- although this trail is not 35 mi- it is 45-50 miles depending on your entry point. I hiked clock-wise over 3 days 3 nights beginning at Pole Creek- there is no camping in the burn area at Pole Creek until you reach your first unnamed lake. There was no campfires allowed in Deschutes when I was there- which was not long after the big fire. This may have changed but I would check before going. Green Lakes was amazing, I went swimming in the water and spent plenty of time enjoying myself there, as I suggest to anyone taking this loop! Obsidian Falls was beautiful as well, but again- you can't camp here without special permits. Collier Cone was a long ascent and had limited water- but we never ran out. Overall it was amazing and 10/10 would return.

11/19/17. There's road construction on the South Fork McKenzie River bridge that has closed the road. Unless you want to drive all the way around the lake you will have to wait till the end of November, at least, before the road reopens.

just me and my wife hiked the trail till dark and pulled off the trail and camped for the night awesome time

I give this trail only four stars because of how crowded blue pool was. Even though it was beautiful there it made it seem as if you hadn't hiked all that way. Along the way though I saw no one not a soul !! It was beautiful and green and quite lush. The falls weren't as crowded as I had thought especially since it was a Saturday but I was there pretty early. I decided to make a camping trip out of it and it all worked out well. Oh and if you do go guard your stuff especially at blue pool I had my temper pad and my rain tarp stolen. Quite upset about that.

hiking
11 months ago

The trail to the top of Lowder is fairly easy to follow and had great views, but beware if you are trying to take either of the two trails heading west. Trail 3329 heading toward Yankee Mountain is incorrectly labeled as Walker Creek and is not maintained. With it's southern exposure, it is extremely overgrown and difficult to follow - more frustrating than fun. I never could find the real Walker Creek Trail (3330). I tried looking for it on my way up and back to the top of Lowder but never found any sign of it. I think the USFS has decided to just let these two trails fade away.

You can access this trail if you come in on FS Road 1993 from Cougar Dam. The road is located right next to the Echo trailhead on the east side of the lake. Five miles up is the Saddle Trail head which climbs about 1300 ft in 1.8 miles to the Olallie Trail just north of the Horse Pasture Mtn. junction.. You can also drive another 6 miles past this point (the road is in good shape) to the Pat Saddle Trailhead, The trail runs right thru here, and you can head south about 3 miles to the top of Olallie Mtn or north 6.5 miles back to Horse Pasture Mtn.

Great trail! Best if you can hike it end to end. Unfortunately, the regional utility is doing needed improvements and has FLOODED a section of the trail below Carmen Diversion reservoir. The water is about 3 feet deep-for the next couple years

great day hike, might be busy with people hitting the blue pool and water falls along the way, I got out there early before every started showing up. would definitely do it again.

backpacking
Friday, June 16, 2017

INACCESSIBLE!! there are two huge landsides 6 miles before the trail head. we went over the first.it consisted of a rockslide.huge boulders. but we made it threw alright. about half a mile up from that there is another huge rockslide at least twice the size and going over the edge of a steep cliff along with a crap ton of mud.we were very disappointed but it simply wasn't safe to go around. all the trails up that road are closed. they need to update these trails more often

backpacking
Friday, May 19, 2017

my dad and i have done this, i think it was a little longer then 32 miles, i think it was more around 50. Best area ive seen i love it and look forward to going back in july.

backpacking
Friday, March 24, 2017

Did the whole thing, which should be 24 miles unless you get lost a lot like me, in which case it turns into 26. Nice campground about halfway, amazing views on the way. I did it in two days with late starts, but I would suggest taking three days to do it if you haven't seen the scenery. You'll want to stop and take pictures. There is a bus service that will take you to the trailhead and you can leave your car at the end. $30 from what I can remember.

Did part of this trail after hiking all day would like to go back and finish the whole thing.

This is my favorite day hike in Oregon.

Monday, September 19, 2016

I hiked the McKenzie River trail from the northern end to Tamolitch pool and back. Great backpacking trip, for sure! Hikers and bikers should keep an eye out for each other, especially on narrow parts of the trail and on slopes.

Sahalie and Koosah Falls are both gorgeous and there are trails on the opposite side of the river that are family friendly and easily accessed from the highway.

A perfect little hike--take the kids, take your parents who don't like hiking--they will after this one! Beautiful forest follows river then goes up above river on lave rock to the gorgeous Tamolitch Pool. Something special to see for sure.

bathrooms we're disgusting

hiking
Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Awesome!

I hiked the trail as an out-and-back, parking at Trail Bridge (trailhead for Tamolitch blue pool) walking up to Clear Lake before turning back.

It was a beautiful day in late May and it wasn't too hard for me to give the trail 5 stars. In eight miles (one way) the trails passes by 4 amazing sites: Tamolitch blue pool, Koosah falls, Sahalie Falls and Clear Lake. Not to mention the McKenzie river itself.

The relative short hike to the "main attractions" means, of course, that traffic is moderate to heavily depending on day of the week and time of day. I started early (7:45 am) to enjoy the "out" part of the hike almost all by myself.

At Trail Bridge (ample parking along the road), the trail starts with a short descent to the west bank of the McKenzie that it then follows closely over relatively flat ground for about half a mile. This section ends after crossing a side stream over a wooden bridge,

After that, the trail becomes a bit more "technical" as the following mile or so weaves through lava rocks and gains elevation over the McKenzie, offering some nice views of the river from a series of cliff-top overlooks. If you look upstream, you will start seeing the bend in the river that indicates the location of the blue pool. This section ends at the blue pool that obviously deserve a few minutes to take this unique feature in.

The next section goes from the Blue Pool to the Carmen reservoir and it is the only section were the river is "missing" (as it works its way underground via lava tubes). Towering cliffs to the East, across the dried up river bed trace the curved edge of the ancient river bend. The disappearance of the lava makes for easier footing and a thicker canopy with even some old growth as the trail gets closer to the reservoir. The trail goes over a few (4?) log bridges before reaching the edge of the Carmen Reservoir that it follows for a quarter mile.

Past the reservoir, the trail climbs more noticeably as it approaches first Koosah falls and then Sahalie. A side use trail drops to the edge of the McKenzie to provide frontal views of the Sahalie falls amphitheater. The view of the falls are not a "open" as from the East bank but they have the advantage of being a bit less crowded.

Past Sahalie, the trail levels to follow the side of the McKenzie before crossing the river over a large wooden bridge. A short distance after, the trail crosses OR126 and the turn-off to ColdWater Cove on NF770.

The last leg of the journey climbs to the edge of Clear Water Lake where it merges with the Clear Lake trail (4341) at an intersection. I took the right branch to the ColdWater Cove Camping and Boat Ramp (after crossing a last lava flow on a paved section). A few good spots along the lake for a bit of rest, lunch and a soak of sore feet in the startlingly cold water before the 8 miles journey back.

Three thousand year old trees stand preserved at the bottom of this lake. Melted snow from Mt. Jefferson takes twenty years to filter through lava beds as it makes its way to the lake. You can rent row boats and kayaks to go out on the water and for a full day of fun. Nice camps sites also.

The lake is so beautiful! The trail that goes around the lake gives you great views of the lake and you walk through some cool lava fields. The water in this lake looks like the tropics, as long as you do not touch it as it is freezing mountain water!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Beautiful trail. I'll do it again

Nice place. The river has unbelievable naturally occurring shades of blue and green. I imagine heaven to look like this area; where are the unicorns? For certain, rainbows can be seen. We have only done ten miles of this trail, glad we have so much more to explore!

camping
Thursday, December 10, 2015

This was a great loop hike. I would rate it in the moderate category rather then easy. I guess it would depend on how much time you have. Plan your trip carefully as there is no camping in the burn section.

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