The Mexican Hat on the San Juan via the Bandito Route - Mountain Buzz
 

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Old 06-13-2012   #1
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
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The Mexican Hat on the San Juan via the Bandito Route

After floating the upper portion of the San Juan, we scrambled up to the Mexican Hat and finished out trip out with an ascent of the Mexican Hat. I must admit that this was the cherry on the top of a really fun river.







<a href="http://photobucket.com" target="_blank"><img src="http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z153/tylerphillips_01/San%20Juan%202012/SAM_0665.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>











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Old 06-13-2012   #2
 
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The summit was really windy. We estimate around 55+ mph.





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Old 06-13-2012   #3
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Very nice! When we floated by on May 25th I recall commenting, "I'm sure someone's been up there, but I have no idea how."

What day was that? I know it's not the same day because the skies were orange that day.

I guess it's always windy up there. Good job!
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Old 06-13-2012   #4
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
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There is great history behind that formation. Royal Robbins hammered up the north side via a scary crack in the mid sixtees and found a stack of rocks on top! During one of my internet geekout sessions, I found an old archived photo of the late Norm Nevills and his wife Doris on the summit! From information I gathered, Norm leaned some type of rigid plank and shimmied up to the top! It is even more mind boggling that he talked his wife into following! I'm not sure who took the photo of them or how frightful climbing down was.

Later a renegade climbing group who called themselves The Banditos, drilled bolts up the south face providing an "easy" way to the summit. This is the route in which we "climbed."

While on the top, I was in awe at the thought of the Nevills climbing up a leaned plank with the exposure and insecurity of the ledges and rock in which it spanned. From what I could see, I believe that Norm, Doris, and company came up the southeast corner of the formation.

I will try to find the photo again.

-Tda
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Old 06-13-2012   #5
 
boulder, Colorado
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I just got off the San Juan last week and I never thought to climb it, and I am a climber. 2 pieces of aid? Cams or nuts? Next time I go I want to do it. Where about did you tie up the boat? Nice pics.
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Old 06-13-2012   #6
 
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Mesa, Colorado
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mex. hat

Those are some great pictures. What a view from up there. What day was it? And what was the cfs on the river? I'm launching on Monday and been watching the water going down and down and down. Hey Ryan, if you're reading this, how low will it go?
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Old 06-14-2012   #7
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
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It was Tuesday June 5th and the river was around 1600 cfs. You can tie up adjacent as possible to the formation and hike up via dirt roads or proceed to the takeout, pack up and drive to the formation. This gave us about a 5 minute approach.

The route is rated A0. Its all bolts, you just clip your webbing to it and yard up each bolt.All you is need biners, and etriers, and a short rope A 30 meter rope will get you up and down this thing. All bolts are newer and really solid including the summit anchor.
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Old 06-14-2012   #8
 
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Longmont, Colorado
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Never thought of climbing that. Very impressive pics. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 06-14-2012   #9
 
Durango, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snakester View Post
Those are some great pictures. What a view from up there. What day was it? And what was the cfs on the river? I'm launching on Monday and been watching the water going down and down and down. Hey Ryan, if you're reading this, how low will it go?


I'll reply for Ryan- he's pretty busy today. Right now it looks like it's going to be fairly low next week, likely staying between 500 and 600 cfs. Get ready to pick up your boat a few times. The weather will be great though!

Susan Novak, P.E.
Hydrologic Engineer
Reclamation
Western Colorado Area Office
[email protected]
970-385-6560
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Old 06-14-2012   #10
 
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Viva Los Banditos!!!

I've climbed it way to many times. In 2001 a friend an I had the speed record of 9 min 45 sec from bottom to both of us on top. Is this silly, yes. Is this a great diversion to a San Juan float, absolutely!

Nice going guys!
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