Ascent of Sand Hill on 2007-03-10

Climber: John Hasch

Date:Saturday, March 10, 2007
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Sand Hill
    Elevation:1070 ft / 326 m

Ascent Trip Report

Saturday, 3/10/2007

Time Out / In: 2:02pm / 2:20pm
Temperature: Sunny, mid 50’s
Wind: Mostly Calm
Tools/Aids: Pedometer, altimeter
Steps/Distance hiked: Not tracked

32.7 – Intersection with DeKalb CR 2 – continue south as the road becomes paved
32.8 – Intersection with Noble CR 1150N – continue south
33.2 – Intersection with DeKalb CR 4 – continue south
33.6 – Arrive at Ed Sattler driveway – turn right (west); park in back of house near barn

I followed Bob Schwab’s directions to locate this high point. I first passed the farm as I drove along the county line road (Noble CR 1200E) to the 4-county point located about 1½ miles north. I had noticed the obvious high ground in the fields behind the barn, near the woods, as I looked out my window.

This stop was the low point of today’s trip. I got out of my car, pumped at how easy this hike would be. About ¼ mile out, ¼ mile back, and a few minutes to take notes and pictures. Total trip would be done in less than ½ hour.

I never got to make the hike because access was denied. I knocked at the back door and was met by a middle-aged woman. I explained to her about my quest, and she immediately declined. Continuing to explain my purpose for being there, she eventually deferred and told me to talk to her husband.

I spoke with him, and he was skeptical and suspicious about my presence. He could not understand the folly of this highpoint hobby. He asked if I would allow some uninvited guest to arrive at my home with a request to inspect my bathroom. I tried to find words to let him know that, no matter how quirky I thought the request might be, I probably would allow the access if a good effort was made to inform me about the requestor’s purpose.

This man did not budge. He mentioned being afraid of me suing him if I got injured. He asked to see some “official” papers from the county. If the county would endorse my efforts, he told me he would reconsider. Assuring him that I had no official connection with the county, I tried to convince him that others like me pursue this hobby, and it was just a personal quest with no official connections to anything or anyone. I told him I had found his property from the Bob Schwab notes from Bob’s earlier visit when Ed Sattler granted permission to enter the property.

I offered to take him to my car to see my topo maps, DeLorme atlas, and other equipment, but he was not moved. I told him I had no desire to disturb anything, and I would leave the property in the same condition as I found it. I offered to have him accompany me on the trip to the field. He said no.

I asked if there was anything I could do to convince him in the future if I came back at some other time. I told him my goal was to reach the high points of each of Indiana’s counties. He asked where else I had been, and I told him. He finally deferred back to his wife’s desire. He told me she was “the boss”. But her initial opinion was not changed.

As it turns out, the woman was Ed Sattler’s daughter. Mr. Sattler has died sometime since Bob’s visit, and his daughter inherited the property. They did not budge and grant access to me, but they agreed that I could return sometime in the future. I drove away knowing that I would return after achieving more of Indiana’s high points. Perhaps the next response would be different. I wondered if Ed had recently died and the sadness of his passing was still generating grief.

Time Out / In: 2:35pm / 2:56pm
Temperature: Sunny, mid 50’s
Wind: Breezy
Tools/Aids: Pedometer, altimeter
Steps/Distance hiked: 1336 steps, about 0.7 mi.

33.8 – Leave Ed Sattler farm, driving south on Noble CR 1200E (the county line road)
34.3 – Intersection with Noble CR 1000N – turn right (west)
35.3 – Intersection with Noble CR 1100E – turn right (north)
36.4 – Intersection with Noble CR 1100N – turn left (west)
36.9 – Arrive at Weston Chapel Cemetery road after passing house on the right

I jumped out of the car and began the hike up the cemetery road to the area known as Sand Hill. Actually, it was more of an ATV trail rather than a road. The overall trail was too narrow and rough for a regular passenger vehicle. I took a relative altimeter reading (RAR) of 1011ft. at the car. Soon, I arrived at the cemetery gate where I observed a RAR of 1061ft.

As Bob Schwab told you previously, this is a very old and run-down cemetery. Many headstones were overturned and broken. The only sign of recent visits was a new American flag that was blowing in the breeze at its position next to a newer grave.

I continued west from the cemetery and followed the high elevation that eventually went north and then back to the east in a large farm field that was surrounded by woods. This “C-shaped” contour reminded me of a salmon steak. The highest elevations on Sand Hill appeared to be in the NW part of the contour. My altimeter confirmed this with RAR of 1062ft and 1063ft in that area.

I hiked back to the cemetery by crossing the lowest elevation in the field, anxious that I would sink through the snow and find water that was present as a large melt-off pond to the near-west. Thankfully, the snow was covering dirt, and I never hit the water. Back at the car, I took a final RAR of 1008ft, only 3ft lower than the initial measure. The highest RAR were relatively consistent with the 1070+ ft contours found for Sand Hill on the topo map.

1. Paragraph 1 – Ed Sattler has died, and ownership has transferred to another person. All bets are off as to when and whether the new owner will grant access to the CoHP community. The present owner has denied access.
2. Paragraph 2 – turn right (north) on 1100E and go 1 MILE – the roads’ name change from 1000N to 1100N indicates a distance of 1 mile. (In most Indiana counties, divide the number by 100 to find the distance from the quadrant lines).
Summary Total Data

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