Halibut Hats and Climbers-What Gives?

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Messages 41 - 60 of total 114 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
jogill

climber
Colorado
Feb 6, 2013 - 08:27pm PT
Joe Brown
Joe Brown
Credit: jogill

A young Joe Brown
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Feb 6, 2013 - 09:09pm PT
Never wore one myself, but I always thought it was Robbins who popularized it.

McCarthy in the Winds sportin' the look:



The Vulgarians and their predecessors had their own take on headgear:

Hans Kraus:



Art Gran and Claude Suhl (compare Art's headgear to Hans'):



Al DeMaria:



Helmets have pretty much killed headgear fashion for climbers.
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Feb 6, 2013 - 09:11pm PT
I used to wear one when I was Trials riding. . . it was a relief from the helmets of moto-cross.
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 6, 2013 - 09:29pm PT
So we're standing around Camp 4, probably circa 1960 plus one? and Art "dah"move" Gran is here for the first time and he is wearing this thing he called a Skull Cap (like the previous photo?) and he says, " In dah Gunks, we judge are climbers by dah Skull Cap they wear." To which Bitchin Bill Amborn, better known as BBA says: "We judge our climbers here by the climbs they do." It was hilarious!

I got to climb with Gran but on one venture, he knocked a large block off on the approach to Arrow Head Arete and I ended up in dah hospital.

Friggin Vulgarians were fun, if not a wee bit crazy.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Feb 6, 2013 - 09:49pm PT
That "scull cap" was called a Turswiry hat. It is indeed the one on Kraus and Gran in the pictures. I believe that Kraus brought it over from Austria, and it became all the rage among the Gunks locals.

The nomenclature is not Austrian however, but strictly home-brewed, and in the extended tradition of Vulgarian word play. An account of an expedition to Schoolhouse Cave had described the leader as "terse and wiry." The Vulgarians decided that climbing leaders might strive for analogous endowments by the ritual donning of the Turswiry cap. Although wiry-ness might have been (ever so briefly) achieved, the cap utterly failed to convey anything like the verbal reticence required for terseness, as Art Gran---a wearer of the Turswiry cap as the photos show---proved beyond a shadow of a doubt.

The story of the Camp 4 Turswiry interchange has been told and retold, with different characters (I've heard it was Robbins, for example) identified as the responder to Gran's declaration. We Easterners were always amazed that anyone took Art's satiric remarks seriously and felt the need for an earnest retort.

After the the scorn heaped upon it by the Gang of Camp Four, the Turswiry went into witness protection and now lives a life of obscurity as a helmet liner.

As for the Halibut Hat, its official name is the flat cap, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flat_cap for full description and history.
Lynne Leichtfuss

Sport climber
moving thru
Feb 6, 2013 - 09:51pm PT
Fantastic Thread Guido! You always look so rakish in your hat. Now I know the history behind it.

I agree, think this is one of the best threads in a while. Wonderful pictures of climbing history.

Hoss Julia, Guido and Lynnie in front of TPR.
Hoss Julia, Guido and Lynnie in front of TPR.
Credit: LL LL
Ihateplastic

Trad climber
It ain't El Cap, Oregon
Feb 6, 2013 - 10:13pm PT
A couple of distinguished gentlemen--one with the required cappage--, one gentleman who is decidedly less distingued and a couple of young 'uns waiting to have some fun on the Apron a few summers ago.

Credit: Ihateplastic
rottingjohnny

Sport climber
mammoth lakes ca
Feb 6, 2013 - 10:33pm PT
This thread makes my knee jerk when i see the famous Robbins hat...There was this local grumpy, neurotic , contractor who always wore one of the halibut hats on the job sights...He had done some climbing but wasn't really like a die-hard , dirtbag , climber...His employees , who were usually climbers , made fun of his Robbins hat behind his back , knowing that doing so to his face would incur the wrath of a short , insecure man...One day , a fellow Supertopian and i got the nerve to walk into this guys custom home...The first thing we saw in the mudroom was a coat rack with 3 spotless Robbins hats in tight formation , waiting to be worn..When we exited the house , my friend looked at me and without saying a word , started laughing...Guido...You look good in that hat...RJ
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 6, 2013 - 10:59pm PT
Credit: guido
Credit: guido
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Feb 7, 2013 - 12:27am PT
American teenage fashion circa 1900:



What goes around comes around.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Feb 7, 2013 - 12:38am PT
Being used for its intended purpose and, most assuredly, there were halibut
beneath the keel as this was the Seward Fjords.

Maybe not the proverbial 'one hand on the bottle and the other on the ...
Maybe not the proverbial 'one hand on the bottle and the other on the throttle' but close enough, eh?
Credit: Reilly
T H

Boulder climber
bouldering
Feb 7, 2013 - 12:42am PT
Plaidman

Trad climber
South Slope of Mt. Tabor, Portland, Oregon, USA
Feb 7, 2013 - 12:48am PT
I posted a reply and deleted it cause I didn't want to muddy the water with an off topic comment. Now that someone posted several other modes of head dress I will make my preference known.

Not that it is really a secret as it is difficult to pry the damn thing off my head. A Tam o' Shanter is the only way to go.

Once you go that way you will never go back.

Credit: Plaidman
photo by Ed Hartouni.
Thanks Ed. I think you captured the look.

Plaid
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Feb 7, 2013 - 01:04am PT
Some old climber hack with a flat hat.













Some other old climber hack. Joe Brown again.










Hamish McInnes.











Apparently Rebuffat's hair was too bitchin' to consider it.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Feb 7, 2013 - 01:19am PT
Mike Farrell
Mike Farrell
Credit: guido
Would you not know it?

I went to the photo search looking for Mike Farrell, who never failed to appear in his white flattie.

And Guido magically appears as well. Boom!

If I didn't know better, I'd say I been hat.

edit: I didn't see this pic on the first page, so I definitely feel I've been hat. Got it covered now.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Feb 8, 2013 - 12:00am PT
Coma coma coma chameleon.  Comes & goes.
Coma coma coma chameleon. Comes & goes.
Credit: GI
klk

Trad climber
cali
Feb 8, 2013 - 12:24am PT
they're "caps,"or "bonnets," not "hats," and it matters.

caps had a short front brim. hats had a real brim of whatever length. in the 19th century, flat caps of wool or cotton were worn mostly by working class and boys. or as country wear by the bourgeoisie and aristos. in town, and at work, fur felt hats with 360 brims dominated.

it wasn't until after ww2 that affecting a working class style, or going hatless, became common. it was a big deal when jfk, aka "hatless jack," went w/o a fedora in public. and it was a big deal when , in the sixties, baseball caps replaced fedoras (and even engineer's and stormy kroner caps).

when i was a kid, my uncles wore fedoras hunting. my grandpa wore an engineer's cap farming. and my youngest uncle was the rebel who wore a baseball cap and an undershirt-- no collar --under his overalls. except for haying, when everyone wore collars and longsleeves.

men's hats are actually a pretty good guide to social and political history in the last century and a half. the irony is that when royal-- and other american climbers --picked up the flat cap from the brits like whillans and brown (two very self-consciously working-class brits), and brought it back to the states to replace fedoras, tyrolians, and skullcaps, the class connotations went haywire.

for americans, that weird poofy flat-brim cap suggested continental or british flair, and that mean that the hats were snooty. today, in the states, they seem to be associated with golf and european sports cars. or in guido's case, sailing. (why would you wear a cotton hat sailing? isn't the greek fisherman's versions wool?)

i never, personally, saw a man in public wearing one of those deals until i got to the west coast many years later. i tried to wear one of those deals because i'd seen pix of whillans, robbins, and gill wearing them. didn't work for me. too much hair. and i never got comfortable in a baseball cap.


Lynne Leichtfuss

Sport climber
moving thru
Feb 8, 2013 - 12:24am PT
I don't know who Hamish McInnes is but I love his hat and his smile. :D
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Feb 8, 2013 - 12:33am PT
Lynne, he was arguably the best-loved Scottish climber ever.
Lynne Leichtfuss

Sport climber
moving thru
Feb 8, 2013 - 12:55am PT
Thanks Reilly, I'll try to find a book about him......
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