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Reviews > Clothing > Hats > Sunday Afternoons Charter hat > Test Report by Kurt Papke

Sunday Afternoons Charter Hat

Test Series by Kurt Papke

Initial Report - June 29, 2014

Tester Information

Name: Kurt Papke
Age: 60
Gender: Male
Height: 6' 4" (193 cm)
Weight: 215 lbs (98 kg)
Email address: kwpapke at gmail dot com
City, State, Country: Tucson, Arizona USA

My backpacking venues have included a combination of Minnesota hikes where I have lived most of my adult life, and Arizona trails where I moved to take a new job about five years ago.  I have always been a "comfort-weight" backpacker, never counting grams, but still keeping my pack as light as easily attained.  Since moving to Arizona I find I need to wear a hat on all my hikes to protect me from the sun.  I'm always on the lookout for a hat that keeps me cool, stays on my head, and keeps me from getting sunburned on my lips, ears, or the back of my neck.

Initial Report

Product Information

Sol shirt
Photo courtesy Sunday Afternoons

Sunday Afternoons
Charter Hat
Year of manufacture
US $49
Manufacturer website
Cream/sand (pictured above)
Also available: Tan/Chaparral
Listed: 3.6 oz (102 g) for unspecified size
Measured garment weight:  3.4 oz (97 g) for L/XL
Also available: Medium/Large
100% nylon

The Charter hat is designed for sun protection.  It is very lightweight, making it ideal for warm climates like Arizona.  Manufacturer's listed features include:
  • Wide foam-core brim
  • Packs flat for storage/travel
  • UPF 50+ rating for sun protection, UPF 40+ on ventilated top crown mesh
  • Water-repellant
  • Wicking sweatband with adjustable sizing
  • Interior crown storage pocket
  • Chin strap (adjustable)

Trying It Out

Size adjustmentAfter removing from the packaging and cutting off the hang tags/labels I tried the hat on for size.  Fit seems excellent, which is something I was worried about as I have a very large cranium.  Pictured at left is the size adjustment along the sweat band, but so far it seemed good-to-go out of the box and I didn't need to make any changes.

Visible in the first photo above are small slits in the sides that are supposed to accommodate sunglasses for storage.  I've never found these to be particularly useful on hats I've used in the past as I don't find it easy to get the glasses into the slits when I can't see the top of my head, but we'll see how it goes with the Charter hat design.

This is a very lightweight hat that seems like it will vent well.  The strip of fabric between the brim and the upper mesh is almost translucent, and the mesh above that looks like it will breathe very well.

This is an attractive hat.  According to the User Guide that came with the hat I can roll up the brim for a more jaunty look, or I can loop the chinstrap over the top to give me a little Aussie flair.

The chin strap adjusts easily and stows nicely in the crown pocket.  I find I don't use these very often, but when you need one you really do need one, so I'm glad its there.

Also depicted in the photo at left is the internal sweatband.  The fabric is nice and soft, but the band does not seem like it will absorb a tremendous amount of sweat as it is quite thin.  I'm not expecting this to be a problem, I don't like a big sponge wrapped around my head, it looks like it will do just fine.


Things that I find positive at this early stage

  • Comfortable fit
  • Very attractive hat, including the color
  • I like the apparent breathability and light weight - this should be a great hat for the Arizona summer

Perceived limitations at this early stage

  • No real concerns up-front

Check back in two months when I've had a chance to tromp around a bit in the mountains wearing this garment and see what I have to say about it in my Field Report.

Thanks to Sunday Afternoons and for the opportunity to contribute to this test.

Read more reviews of Sunday Afternoons gear
Read more gear reviews by Kurt Papke

Reviews > Clothing > Hats > Sunday Afternoons Charter hat > Test Report by Kurt Papke

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