The trail starts at the Aspen Glen Picnic Area. Just after a quarter mile, the trail splits. Keep left to stay on Pine Knot Trail. Aside from a few ups and downs, the trail ascends steadily through the pine forest offering the occasional glimpse of Big Bear Lake, but no good views.
At 2.3 miles, you cross Knickerbocker Road (2N08) and shortly thereafter pass Deer Group Campground on the left. Cross Skyline Road at 3.3 miles and enjoy the first vista of the San Bernardino Mountains. Continue on Pine Knot Trail and reach Grand View Point at 3.5 miles. This is a great place for a break and to take in the stunning panorama that lies in front of you.
Return to the previous trail junction and take Skyline Trail
on the left. The trail follows the ridge line and offers great views at almost every turn. Reach Clarks Grade Road at 6.5 miles and follow the dirt road north for 100 yards to reach Plantation Trail (1W12)
. From this point on, you are hiking though pine forest again. Turn right at 7.5 miles onto Skyline Trail
At 8.7 miles, you reach another dirt road. Keep to the right and take Camp Osito Road (2N17)
. Pass Girl Scouts Camp Osito at 9.2 miles and stay left. At 10.3 miles, take the track on the left which is Cabin 89 Trail
. The descent becomes steeper now. But good views of Big Bear Lake are very rewarding. Join Pine Knot Trail again at 12.2 miles and return to the picnic area.