Conundrum Hot Springs

Marci Krivonen

The two largest public landowners in the Castle Creek Valley are gathering data to determine how to manage the area the future. The effort comes as the Forest Service and Pitkin County are seeing increased use of trails and roads. 

The entities are looking at the Castle Creek watershed from ridge to ridge, starting just past the urban growth boundary to the top of Pearl Pass and Taylor Pass.

The groups have seen a rise in use at spots like the Conundrum Hot Springs, American Lake and Cathedral Lake trails. Cindy Houben is Pitkin County’s Community Development Director.

High Country News

The changes the White River National Forest is considering to minimize crowds in wilderness areas have been successful in other forests. Last week, Forest Service officials began an informal outreach effort around how to bring back solitude to busy trails and backcountry camping. As Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen reports, their ideas have been tried in other wilderness areas.

Aspen Sopris District Ranger Karen Schroyer is delivering a presentation to a packed house in Aspen. She’s working to educate people about problems in the forest and solicit feedback.

Valley Roundup - July 18th, 2014

Jul 18, 2014

Welcome to Valley Roundup.  It’s a review of the top news stories of the week in Aspen and beyond.

Joining us today are Andy Stone, former editor of and now columnist for the Aspen Times and Curtis Wackerle, Managing Editor of the Aspen Daily News.

This week there was a double-homicide in El Jebel.  The same week a pedestrian was hit and killed on highway 82, this comes on the heels of a high profile murder in Aspen and the death of a rafter.  Today we reflect on how big city this all sounds.

Also, are we loving the outdoors to death?  Judging for the Conundrum Hot Springs…maybe so.

Proposals are lining up for what to do with the old Aspen Art Museum, we look at the Lodging incentive program and the strange partnership of Lee Mulcahy and Maurice Emmer.

On the download with Rob St. Mary a how-to for safe sexting.  It’s all ahead on Valley Roundup.

High Country News/hcn.org

White River National Forest officials are concerned about overuse at Conundrum Hot Springs, outside Aspen. Forest Service staffers recently pulled more than 35 pounds of trash from the popular recreation area and the number of visitors continues to grow.

Visitors hike from Aspen and Crested Butte to reach the hot springs in the Maroon Bells/Snowmass Wilderness. The area sees more than 3000 people each summer. Martha Moran with the Forest Service says the numbers are impacting the area’s Wilderness character.