Dream of Wild Turkeys
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Janet on P2.
This is one of my favorite climbs in Red Rocks. It is varied, steep, long and challenging with perfect rock. This route has some great crack climbing but the real excitement comes from the reasonably bolted face sections. The exposure is fantastic and the whole route is well protected.
DOWT is deservedly very popular and given the fact that it shares the first pitch with the equally popular Prince of Darkness (5.10c), an early start is highly recommended.
There are many other options on this wall and in this area if this route is jammed. Sour Mash is another good option on BV Wall and a few variations of DOTW exist also: Yellow Brick Road is a 5.10b 2-pitch direct variation beginning on the third pitch, and The Gobbler is a 5.10a variation to the start.
To approach, follow the stream bed until a large wall blocks the way. Here, you should be directly across from the large arch on the lower right side of the wall. At this point, follow a faint "trail" up left to fourth class terrain and scramble up this, aiming for the left side of the arch. Take the trail to a rocky terrace on the left of the arch. Locate a nice right angling crack about a pitch up. The bottom of this crack is the top of the first pitch.
P1: Climb nebulous 5.6 terrain aiming for the bottom of the crack on P2. Belay at 2 bolts about 100' up. The pro on this pitch is somewhat sparse but the climbing is easier than anything else on the route.
P2: 5.9, ~160' Make a few thin moves off the belay up and right and gain the crack. There are lots of slabular moves on this pitch due to the angling nature. The crack eats stoppers. Follow this crack to another double-bolt belay.
P3: 5.9, 100' Continue up the crack until a line of bolts leads to the right. Continuing straight up puts you on Yellow Brick Road. Check out the plaque. Make the exciting traverse right clipping 4 or 5 bolts on your way. This is steep here but the holds are big. Once you gain the large crack, make some 5.8 offwidth moves up another 30' to another 2 bolt belay on your right. If you miss the belay, which is hard to spot, another possible, albeit uncomfortable, belay can be had a little further up.
P4: 5.10a, 150' Continue up the crack to it's top. The crack becomes thinner and thinner until it's gone. At the top, two strangely placed bolts mark the crux of the pitch and the climb. Make a few very thin moves out left aiming for the bolted belay.
P5: 5.10a, 150' Exciting pitch! Follow the line of bolts up and left on tiny edges and belay at another set of bolts at the base of a cresent shaped corner.
P6: 5.9, 130' Follow the cresent corner up and right. It starts out shallow and easy and gets steeper and harder near its top. Step onto the face and make some bolt-protected moves up and left to a thin crack. Follow this bolted crack up to another bolted belay.
P7: 5.8, 120' Follow the thin crack straight up. Near the top, the angle rolls off and easy climbing leads to a large ledge with belay/rap bolts.
Most people rap from here as we did, although the route continues up for another 4 pitches which are suppose to be good.
For the descent from here, make a series of double-rope raps down the wall. Staying a little left on POD is the best option if noone is coming up as there are fewer rope-eating cracks there, although rapping down DOWT and Yellow Brick Road works fine too. We did it in 5 raps.
Standard rack to 3", some quick draws, std. and a few long runners.
BETA PHOTO: The Route
Janet contemplating the routes crux, P4.
Janet working out the thin moves on the awesome P5...
"Dream of Wild Turkeys"
Photo by Blitzo.
A lead fall for Gigi results in a badly sprained a...
To my poor 8.5mm 60...RIP
Looking down on the fun pitch 6 of DOWT...
Dean leading the excellent Pitch 9 of DOWT...
Joe Chorny on P3 traverse of DOWT
Joe Chorny starting up Pitch 6
Joe Chorny starting up pitch 4 5.8 offwidth - brin...
Sam on P2
Vaino Kodas, coming across the p3 traverse
Collin on pitch two.
Near the top of pitch 7
The Traverse at the top of P3, Dream of Wild Turke...
Looking down on Pitch 2
4th pitch of Dream of Wild Turkeys. 2004.
Matt and Andy head up the 2nd pitch.
On pitch 6.
Gwen coming up the fourth pitch on a cold, windy M...
One of them there pitches up there. Maybe 5??
Sign on top of first pitch Circa 1987.
at the top of ten, heading down
Robbie on the hanging belay
|Comments on Dream of Wild Turkeys
From: Sacramento, CA
Feb 20, 2004
39 bolts were replaced in March 2001.
|By George Bell|
From: Boulder, CO
Feb 20, 2004
This was the first long route I did in Red Rocks and it is excellent. One caveat, all routes in Black Velvet get little sun and we made the mistake of climbing this on a windy day in March. We nearly froze our asses off! Since it was our first long route we did not realize warmer alternatives existed. Solar Slab would probably have been much more comfortable, in hindsight.
|By John Peterson|
Mar 8, 2004
There are three more pitches above those described here, plus an easy traversing pitch. While not quite as good as the lower pitches they are well worth doing.
I think the Gobbler is just as good as the normal start. The climbing there has a little more variety, plus you don't get stuck in the POD conga line.
|By david goldstein|
Mar 11, 2004
We did three pitches beyond those described by Scott and highly recommend them. The first is 70' of 4th class. The second, perhaps our favorite pitch of the entire climb, is about 130' of easy 5.9 (be careful when rapping this pitch, our rope would not pull). The 3rd around 140' of easier 5.9. Continuing looked worthwhile but we walked out in the dark as it was.
From: Sacramento, CA
Jul 8, 2004
ASCA Update 04/04: 'Second protection bolt on pitch 2 replaced. Note that the Swain guides incorrectly call this pitch 110'; it is actually 150', and can not be linked with the first pitch with a 60m rope without simulclimbing.'
|By John Wilder|
From: Las Vegas, NV
Mar 3, 2005
Going to the top is well worth it on this one. The only pitch on the whole climb that doesnt stand out as really good (aside from the short 4th class section) is the last one before Turkeyland. However, its a nice relief after 12 pitches of 5.8/5.9 climbing! From there, its about 20 minutes of simul-climbing up the 4th class slabs to the summit and then an easy walk off. However, if you like, you can rappel from the top of the last pitch at Turkeyland- the rap slings are new as of 2004.
Sep 13, 2005
I agree with Vegastradclimber about topping out on the route. Here's some beta if your interested.
Pitch 8 scramble up 4th class to find a bolted station below a steep wall.
Pitch 9: A great pitch! Climb up a vertical thin crack using many face holds (tons of bolts -many of which should be chopped as there are great placements most of the way) 5.9
Pitch10: Another nice pitch! Continue up a the obvious crack clipping a few bolts along the way. 5.9
Pitch 11: take the right crack (thinner one) up past a poor bolt and a bit of face climbing. Kind of a crappy anchor but some nice bushes are available a bit further back. 5.7
Pitch 12: Scramble up and left on 4th class ramps and ledges until you get to the base of a right angling red mini-dihedral.
Pitch 13: Climb up dihedral onto summit ridge and lighter white rock steps.
Continue up ridge on light color rock for about 500 feet. Generally move to the left side of the ridge to avoid obstacles. Be careful as rock might be friable in sections. Continue up climbing several towers. Mainly 4th class but exposed in places.
Sep 22, 2005
I agree that the upper pitches are worthwhile. I felt the route was sustained which made the walkoff long and painful(lots of hanging belays which smoked my legs:)
|By James R. Arnold|
Mar 30, 2006
Looking for some beta on this route as may try it in a week or so. The pitch lengths given here are very different than the Swain guidebook. The overview here says 7 pitches and 700 ft but if I add the pitch lengths up it is 910 ft. The Swain pitch lengths get just under 700 ft. Which is correct?
Pitch 1 100 ft 75 ft
Pitch 2 160 ft 110 ft
Pitch 3 100 ft 80 ft
Pitch 4 150 ft 165 ft
Pitch 5 150 ft 50 ft
Pitch 6 130 ft 140 ft
Pitch 7 120 ft 75 ft
Total 910 ft 695 ft
Pitch 5 is different by 100 ft- supposed to have 6 bolts, which isn't that many for 150 ft of climbing unless there are some places for gear.
Many thanks for the help.
|By Jason D. Martin|
Apr 14, 2006
I just did Dream of Wild Turkeys to the top of the formation yesterday. Those attempting this should be aware that climbing to the top is similar to climbing a route like Epinephrine, it is a long way from bottom to top. All together the climb requires 16 or more pitches.
Anyone going beyond the Turkeyland ledge should be extremely careful. There is a lot of loose rock on that ledge and there are often a lot of people on Black Velvet Wall. A single disloged rock could be very serious. Don't let ropes drag over rock piles. Please be careful here.
The guidebook says that there is a lot of fourth class terrain to the summit. Beyond the Turkeyland ledge we found very little of this. The climbing up there is primarily low fifth class on semi-friable rock. Protection is sparse. Most people will choose to pitch it out while some might simul-climb it, but only a small percentage will feel comfortable unroping on this supposed "fourth class" terrain.
All together a great outing!
|By Graham Rogers|
Mar 28, 2007
Just want to emphasize the rope eating crack if rapping pitch 4...I attempted to pull my ropes carefully, but obviously I needed more grace...and a knife. 3 other ropes were chomped in the same spot.
Also, the 4th pitch crux felt a bit harder with the weight of 2 60m doubles hanging their full length behind. You can break it into 2 pitches pretty easily if you'd rather; maybe 50 or so feet down from the top are two rusty, but reasonable bolts and a crack to back up.
Despite losing one of my favorite ropes [sniff] I'd take this route any day over POD.
|By Graham Rogers|
Mar 29, 2007
Not that anyone cares, but my second ed. Swain book rates pitch 2 5.8+ and pitch 5 and 5.9+. That already seemed a bit inflated, but I don't have much perspective at RR.
|By J pee|
From: Capitola, CA
Jun 3, 2007
This is a good route despite the number of bolts, some of which seemed unnecessary where obvious gear could be found. P 2 is more sustained than any other and, IMHO, could compete with the slippery moves at the top of P 4 for crux status. USE CAUTION if climbing higher after P 12 to not dislodge any of the numerous loose blocks. These could mean The End for any climbers below. Climbed this in Nov. of 05 and found a register at the summit. Apparently The Bird had been there a week earlier and scrawled in the ledger "Sport climbing is like sport F*$%ing, it's a lot of fun but no commitment"
|By Guy H.|
From: Fort Collins CO
Oct 28, 2007
You can get down from the top of pitch 10 in 6 raps, if you have two 60M ropes. Be careful with the 3rd rap, since it is right at 200ft. The descent should take about 45min, and there are very few rope eating features.
1.) Rap to top of P9 (140ft)
2.) Rap to top of P7 (~195ft)
3.) Rap to the top of P5 (199ft)
4.) Rap to the top of the first pitch on Yellow Brick Road (160ft)
5.) Rap to the top of P2 on the Gobbler (190ft)
6.) Rap to the ground (185ft)
Nov 5, 2007
A note about going to the summit - don't underestimate it. There's quite a bit of scrambling and some easy (but unprotected) 5th class above the 11th pitch. After going to the top, I think I would opt to lower after the 9th pitch to save the exhausting push to the summit and tedious decent (in the dark). Great experience though. The first 9 pitches were 6 stars at least!
|By AccessFund HQ|
Nov 21, 2007
The upper pitches can be very loose.
I climbed DOWT back in 2005 and pulled a coffee table sized slab off the 9th pitch taking a thiry foot pendulum swing off the anchors. (It left a good sized non-core shot knick in the rope)
Luckily no-one was below us as it was later in the day. Had there been, it surely would have... well, not good.
As we finished off the (endless) top it got looser and looser.
|By James R. Arnold|
Apr 20, 2008
Climbed this last Thursday with Joe Chorny. Definately a 5 star route. We found some things differently than this site advised so giving comments below.
The pro on the first pitch is not sparse as there is plenty when it is needed (though the first piece may be a ways up). We found pitch 2 to be sustained - I don't think there was any move harder than 8 or 8+ on it but it just kept coming. The crack starting pitch 3 and the traverse is definately harder than pitch 2 (is 9 or 9+) but much shorter. We belayed after the traverse at the 2 bolts and the good ledge there. There is another anchor 30 ft up and 5+ ft right of the crack that some guidebooks say to go to but how would you see it and get out of the crack to get to it and it would be a hanging belay? We did not enjoy the offwidth section on Pitch 4. The gear recommendation says to bring one 3-3.5" cam so we only had 1 #3 Camalot. If 5.8 offwidth is not your thing (as it isn't ours) I would suggest bringing 2-3 larger pieces including a #4 Camalot. The offwidth goes for 60-70 ft before it narrows down to get a 2" cam in. The crux face at the top of the pitch goes better if one goes higher up the crack and then traverses horizontally to the anchor. The pitch 5 traverse is only 40-50 ft long (this site saying 150 ft is an error that should be corrected) and has 4 bolts on it. Pitch 6 (5.9 with 10 bolts) is about 120 ft long (just past halfrope on 70 m). Pitch 7 (5.8 with 5 bolts)is about 100 ft long.
We rapped POD in 5 raps with the last rap being about 200 ft finishing over the Gobbler to the left (as looking down the cliff from the top) to make sure it would not get stuck.
Apr 25, 2008
Climbed this to the top a few years back and thought it was very fun. It's very easy climbing the higher you get, and the view can't be beat.
From: Boise, ID
Nov 24, 2008
Fantastic route! Pitch 4 was my favorite. Long and varied. All of the locations where the offwidth starts to get difficult can be avoided by face climbing out right and then back to the crack above the difficulty. I was definitley glad to have the big cams (2x#3 & 1x#4), but there are also some placements for smaller pro if you look around.
Apr 4, 2009
Lots of pitches, including #1 and #2 can link with a 70m rope. You can Rappel Prince of Darkness with a 70m as well.
|By Sherri Lewis|
From: Sequim, WA
Apr 27, 2010
Fantastic route! We took doubles of #3 cam but one suffices if you don't mind walking it a bit on the lower part of P4. On the upper part of this pitch, the face to the right appears to receive a lot more traffic than the wide crack(which is probably where the doubles would come in handy).
I'm glad we did all 11 pitches. Made for an excellent full day, and it would have been a shame to miss the fun on P9 and the view from "Turkey Ledge."
|By Charles Leung|
Mar 14, 2011
Can this route be rapped with a 70m rope?
|By John Wilder|
From: Las Vegas, NV
Mar 14, 2011
Nope- the second pitch is way too long (160' at least), as is the fourth (well over 110').
You can rap PoD if you go to the top of 6 or 7 and rap that route with a single 70m (i think- didnt check the last rap). It's pretty mellow with two ropes, though- that wall is clean as a whistle.
|By Bill Gibbs|
From: Andover, Ks.
Oct 19, 2011
Did this climb for the second time, but topped out on it this time. I can scratch it off the bucket list, but will never go past the 11th pitch again...especially if there's other parties below. The loose rock is too much to avoid completely. Our rope dragging on the 12th pitch tossed off a dinner plate sized boulder without warning! If you aim to top out, climb fast unless you don't mind route finding on crap rock in the dark.
|By Colin Parker|
From: Idyllwild, CA
May 7, 2012
We rapped from the top of pitch 7 with a single 80m via the Prince of Darkness route. Not sure if a 70m could make it. It would be close...
|By Peter Lewis|
From: Bridgton, Maine
May 23, 2012
This is simply one of the best climbs on the planet: steep (but not too steep), variable (cracks to face), and consistent, on perfect rock with great gear. The second pitch is simply amazing with move after move of moderate climbing (I don't think there's a 5.9 move on the pitch), perfect protection, and frequent rests. The third pitch starts with some stout steepness (which feels about 9+) and finishes with a trivial traverse (barely .8, no kidding). The wide pitch (P.4) is actually quite secure and if you're creative you can do it with nary and offwidth move (keep looking out on the face to the right). The crux .10a moves at the top of P.4, moving left after the second bolt, contain the only insecure-feeling moves on the route, with uncharacteristically smeary footholds. The upper pitches are nothing short of perfect face climbing. (Pitch 5, by the way, is only 50 feet long, not 150, and it's barely 5.9.) We brought bigger cams (to 4") and placed them on P.4, but they aren't really necessary. We rapped four times with two 60m ropes from the top of P.7: from P.7 to the top of P.5, then straight down to the top of P.3, then to the top of P.2 of The Gobbler, then straight down to the ground. Simple, fast, and with little snagging potential. Do this route!
|By Rob Fielding|
From: Las Vegas, NV
May 23, 2012
Have to agree w/ Peter.
Phenomenal route for the grade. Did pitches 1-10. The climb is very well protected w/ lots of variable climbing. Half ropes are a great option as there is a bit of wandering on the route, especially on pitch 4.
We brought single rack to 4", with doubles from 0.5-2" and were comfortable.
Like many others have said, w/ modern technology it would be great to see some of the bolts dissipate, but I don't think it takes away from the climb.
|By Nelson Day|
From: Victorville, CA
Jun 11, 2012
Bring 14 slings on this route. Pitch 2 is 180 feet, and pitch 4 is 180 feet. I didn't sew up the second pitch, and used every sling I had. I ran out the 4th pitch, and had 1 sling left over at the top. Long sustained pitches...
|By Christian Mason|
From: Westminster, CO
Mar 31, 2013
Classic route with nice varied climbing.
Climbing on 60m half ropes, we were able to link pitches 5 and 6 without much rope drag.
I'm not sure how well this would work with a single, as there route does wander a bit.