A herd of frozen cows discovered by two Air Force Academy cadets in a ranger cabin near the Conundrum Hot Springs in Aspen have to be disposed of before they thaw, or else they could contaminate the water.

The Forest Service is currently mulling two removal options: Blowing them up or setting them on fire. "Obviously, time is of the essence because we don't want them defrosting," said spokesman Steve Segin.

The two cadets stumbled upon the kine last month inside the Conundrum Creek Cabin, where they were hoping to spend the night. Officials believe the cows were grazing on federal wilderness lands and sought shelter from a snowstorm.

Air lifting is considered too costly, and large amounts of snow on the trail mean hauling them out is also problematic, so explosives and fire are currently the only viable options.

[photo via AP]