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Frozen cow catastrophe marks end of well-known cabin near Aspen
ASPEN — It's unlikely there will be people partying or cows dying in the old cabin near Conundrum Hot Springs any longer.
The U.S. Forest Service removed the tin roof from the structure over the course of the summer and recently finished the job, according to Andrew Larson, lead wilderness ranger in the Aspen-Sopris District. For now, the plan is to allow the wooden frame of the cabin to deteriorate in the harsh weather at 11,200 feet in elevation.
The cabin gained notoriety last winter when it was discovered that six cows froze to death inside after apparently seeking shelter during a snowstorm. The cows were among 29 that wandered into the Conundrum Valley from the Crested Butte side of the Continental Divide. They wandered off a Gunnison-area rancher's grazing allotment for unknown reasons. The rancher's efforts to find them, by air and ground, were unsuccessful.
The cabin doesn't have any doors or windows, but the roof provided shelter from the elements. The cattle wandered in and never left. Six other carcasses were found in the spring.