|Hiking||3.00 Miles|| 7 Hrs 5 Mns ||1.64 mph|
|1,400 ft AEG|| 5 Hrs 15 Mns Break|
||no linked trail guides|
|Hat Mountain is in the Sauceda Mtns, south of Gila Bend and east of Rte 85.|
You'll need a permit from the BMGR.
This is the first time I have ever hiked up a mountain, knowing in advance, I would not get all the way to the top. The last 150 to 200 feet of Hat Mountain is literally a vertical wall, all around its perimeter.
Hat Mtn reminded me of my hike up Tam O' Shanter, except on that smaller mountain, the highest vertical wall was only 25 to 35 feet up, and I found a safe notch to shimmy to the top. [ photo ]
There's no such thing for Hat Mtn. Research tells me, climbing gear is used to get on top.
I won't say Hat Mountain's vertical wall can't be 'free climbed', but the person that lives in my skin wouldn't even think of it.
There's a benchmark on the flat top of Hat Mtn called Dome, set there in 1920. Without a helicopter, Dome BM and I will never meet.
However, surveyors did set a different benchmark, directly below the vertical wall, and appropriately named it "Hat Brim". Those 1936 surveyors likely had a chuckle naming it.
I hiked up the mountain to say hello to Hat Brim benchmark, and its two reference marks. Plus, I hiked up another lower, Hat Mtn peak, to locate its azimuth mark.
I took all day long on this hike, even though its only about three miles, TH back to TH, and only about 1,400 AEG. I stayed on the mountain a long, long time, searching for stuff, un-cairning cairns (and rebuilding them), plus exploring at least half of Hat Mtn's vertical, oval brim.
It was a beautiful day, so I took advantage of it, and just hung out a bit.
I'm sure there are many ways to get up to the hat's brim. My track up was very circuitous, as I had to go around cliffs and other obstacles.
I first climbed up a lower peak and located Hat Brim Azimuth Mark. It was under a cairn that was almost glued and locked to the peak. Maybe I was the first one to say hello to it since 1936.
I then loosely followed Outlander's track for the middle portion of the climb. That portion was not fun, as you traverse a lower wall on a rather scree filled, angled pitch, through a couple high drainages. After that middle portion, you can see Hat Mtn again, and the last portion of the hike is straight forward. Yes, the 'brim' of the hat is steep, has scree and cholla, but it's very doable.
I hiked up all the way to the vertical wall, then worked my way to the east side of the mountain where Hat Brim benchmark was set.
I ventured CCW around the perimeter of the wall, confirming (to me), there's no safe way to get to the top of the 'Hat' without climbing gear.
Finally, I let go of the mountain, and started down.
One suggestion - Use my 'Up' track to go up and down, and disregard my down track. In my attempt to make my down track more straight forward, I 'cliffed out' 3 times. (My Bad).
I highly recommend this hike. It can be extended easily, by descending near the Hat Brim BM, for more exploring.
|Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost|