Bullitt Fireplace

The first official CHS hike was the Bullitt Fireplace Loop on Squak Mountain. It’s east of my prior two hikes:

The route is similar to a reverse of this loop: Cougar-Squak corridor to the Fireplace, direct to the microwave towers, then Old Griz to Eastside Traverse and back down. Although this hike was labeled “easy,” the last 0.4 miles up to the fireplace was steep enough that I needed to pause a few times.

The namesake attraction, the Buillitt Fireplace, is what remains of the cabin Sim Bullitt built in 1952 as a weekend retreat. There’s a picnic table where we had a lunch break (trail coffee == worth it!). At this elevation, it was noticeably cooler and breezier.

We continued along a less-used trail to the summit where the microwave towers are. Amusingly, there is a microwave sitting at the base of the fence, perhaps analogous to the mailbox at Mailbox Peak? Best of all, the portable toilet was very clean. (****. would poop here again)

Best portable toilet is an AirBnB/tent near the Navajo Nation NP

Old Gris through East Side Traverse was very pleasant. There were several downed trees on that side, only two that required significant contortions to get past.

As this is the north side, there is moss. Lots and lots of moss.

So, overall, a great use of a Saturday morning. Parking at the trailhead (and along Mountainside Drive) was still available when we finished. Workout-wise, I definitely felt like I was working a lot harder on this one, especially the steepest areas.

Slope is inversely proportional to my speed

Out of curiosity, I put my fitness watch on before I went to bed and it measured my “resting” heart rate at 39. As the hike progressed, there were several times when I was above my “max heart rate” (as calculated 220 – age). I didn’t need the watch to tell me I needed to take a breather before continuing. Still, for a hike rated as “easy,” I surely hope this improves soon.