|Conundrum Peak as seen from the route up Castle|
As an "unofficial" 14'er, Conundrum Peak is probably the least famous and least climbed of all the Elk Range 14'ers. Despite Conundrum being shunned on most 14'er lists, it is a worthy mountain with a beautiful profile and some high quality route.
Conundrum is found by taking the Castle Creek turnoff towards Ashcroft from a large roundabout just north Aspen, Colorado on Highway 82 (the same way you get to Castle Peak). After 13 miles (after you have passed the tiny burg of Ashcroft and some very well-to-do homes) turn right onto a dirt road. Occasionally, some very hardy souls will park here. Continue 1.5 miles along a rough road to a creek crossing that will be difficult for low-clearance vehicles. Many people park here. 4WD vehicles can continue, however, along a very rough road all the way to 12,700' where there is a good parking lot. This 4WD approach does not allow you to comply with the 3,000' rule but does highly abridge your day.
|The snow pitch in September|
This route can also be reached from Castle's northeast ridge by ascending to Castle Peak's summit and traversing over to Conundrum.
|Conundrum Peak from Castle Peak|
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