A piece of Aspen History

A group of picnickers at the Conundrum Hot Springs, about 1923. All are sitting on the the roof of a log cabin, which served as the bathhouse.
Courtesy Aspen Historical Society

“The pool is ready for occupancy,” proclaimed the Aspen Democrat-Times on Oct. 5, 1915. “John Parsons has returned from the Hot Springs up Conundrum gulch, where he has been the past several weeks building cabins and a swimming pool. The work is now completed and the next time you go up to the Hot Springs you will find everything to your liking.

“A cement pool 8×10 feet and 4 feet deep has been built some 65 feet from the springs. The water is piped to the pool and runs out at the lower end, thus insuring fresh water all the time. Over this pool a cabin 10×14 has been erected and a cement walk is arranged about the pool proper.

“Here one can enjoy a good swim and is protected from the crisp zephyrs that might be coming from the snowcapped peaks in the vicinity. The springs are about 10,000 feet above sea level and a cabin doesn’t hurt a bit when a fellow has no clothes on to protect his pink skin from the mountain ozone. But with the hot water in the cement basin and the steam filling the cabin it will be a tame Turkish bath — you doing your own rubbing.

“There is another cabin 10×14 built near the bath house, that is to be used for camping purposes. This will add to the ‘comfyness’ of the resort and next summer many will take advantage of the opportunities afforded by our Sportsmen’s Association and the local forest office who built the cabins and the pool. We take off our hats to ‘them fellers.’

“Next spring the county should fix Marney’s basin which is 12 miles from town. This road should be built for auto traffic and made a first-class road in all respects, something that will induce tourists to drive over it. After arriving at the Marney cabin it’s a three-mile walk to the springs over a trail built by the forest rangers. Then it’s a plunge in the pool, a trot back over the trail and lunch. Say but it will taste good. Try it once, honey!”

The image shows a group at the Conundrum Hot Springs, circa 1920. They are sitting on the roof of a log cabin, which served as the bathhouse.