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Top 10 Aspen Outdoors Adventures

Destination(s): Aspen

The mountains, rivers and lakes of Aspen are amongst the most beautiful in Colorado--and arguably, on planet Earth! From the exhilarating and semi-technical North Maroon Peak to the aspen-lined alpine trails, there's something for adventurers of every level. These are my top ten favorites when I'm in the Aspen area. read more about Top 10 Aspen Outdoors Adventures

North Maroon Peak

North Maroon Peak

One of the true jewels of Rocky Mountains, 14,014 ft. North Maroon Peak is a coveted summit for those bagging 14ers or simply climbers looking for an adventure. North Maroon is a difficult, semi-technical climb that is not for inexperienced climbers; those lacking mountain experience can hire a guide in town. The round trip adventure ascends over 3,000 ft. and is a 16 mile round trip. For this reason, many chose to camp out and do the peak in two days instead of in an epic 1-day push. Even the easiest route up North Maroon is a technical climb on steep snow and rotten rock, so be ready for tough terrain and class 4 moves if you want to top out! read more about North Maroon Peak

Castle Peak

Castle Peak

Standing 14,265 above sea level, Castle Peak is one of Colorado's famous 14ers and the highest point in the Elk Range. Despite its lofty presence, a hike to the top of Castle Peak is a non-technical but strenuous trek that is best made in summer or early autumn. Get an early start to avoid storms! The round trip mileage for a trip to Castle's apex is roughly 12 miles if you start from the passenger car trailhead and 7 miles if you drive farther up the rugged 4x4 road. Most reasonably fit people can reach the top; just make sure to take a few days to adjust to the altitude if you are coming from out of town. For more detailed information on routes, please visit 14ers.com. read more about Castle Peak

Maroon Bells

Maroon Bells

  • Maroon Creek Road
  • tel:+1 970 925 3445
  • Visit website
  • Aspen, 81611
Aspen to Crested Butte

Aspen to Crested Butte

  • 806 West Hallam Street
  • tel:+1 970 925 3445
  • Visit website
  • Aspen, 81611

Those looking for an epic winter adventure will love the challenge of the 25-mile Aspen to Crested Butte ski traverse. This hut-based adventure can take anywhere between 1-3 days and ends in the town of Crested Butte, where you'll need to either leave a vehicle or take a shuttle back to Aspen. Established but ungroomed trails go over a 12,075 ft. pass that cuts through the Elk Range and ends in the town of Crested Butte. Huts must be reserved in advance (contact the Ashcroft Ski Touring Center (970) 925 1971 for more info) and include Tagert and Friends Huts. read more about Aspen to Crested Butte

Cathedral Lake Trail

Cathedral Lake Trail

Cathedral Lake Trail is a hearty day hike, but don't let its strenuous nature deter you. The 6.4 mile round trip is an out and back, on-trail adventure that climbs steeply to the amazing amphitheater of Cathedral Lake. Huge rock formations surround the alpine waters, making for an incredible all-natural setting. Nearby Electric Pass provides even more scenery for fit hikers or backpackers that have the energy to explore the area. To reach the trailhead, drive 1/2 mile west of Aspen on Highway 82 and at the roundabout, turn onto Castle Creek Road. Continue 12.2 miles up Castle Creek and turn right onto a gravel road, driving a 1/2 mile to the trailhead. read more about Cathedral Lake Trail

Lost Man Trail

Lost Man Trail

Difficult Creek Trail

Difficult Creek Trail

Difficult Creek campground is the starting point for this backcountry adventure. The trail crosses several streams and sagebrush flats before ending 2.6 miles at a series of old mining cabins. Those hoping to explore off-trail can continue on into the wilderness, provided they are adequately prepared to self-navigate in the woods. Wildlife abounds in this area and photographers will have plenty of opportunities to shoot images of the mountain wilderness. To reach the Difficult Creek Trail, drive 5 miles southeast of the Aspen Ranger District Office on Hwy. 82 and turn right into Difficult Campground. 0.6 miles down the road, park your vehicle at the picnic area on the right. read more about Difficult Creek Trail

Maroon-Snowmass Trail

Maroon-Snowmass Trail

  • 806 West Hallam Street
  • tel:+1 970 925 3445
  • Visit website
  • Aspen, 81611