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This is a good, stout climb on solid rock, for the most part. The difficulty is up for debate, but it seemed significantly harder than Hubbel's assigned grade of 10c according to myself and my partner. It was harder than any other 10 I've done there. Then again, the experience was subjective and perhaps I should mention that the roof crack can hold ice in the winter.... Absent jamming, the route felt more like hard 5.11, and was more difficult to protect.
Start on P1 of Hummingbird's Way
and climb that to the large, left-leaning overhang above, placing long slings before continuing up and left on to Wild Turkey proper. Pass the leaning overhang and stop below the large roof, placing some more gear and more long slings. An off-fists crack appears surprisingly on the right, and a "rest" can be contrived in this, surprisingly, before continuing through the crack out of the roof. Launch up into that crack on hand to fist sized gear and... and....
Well, at this point I'll describe what I saw, and then my experience. I saw a hand and fist-sized crack out to the lip. I saw icicles hanging in my face... I felt up into the freezing wet crack trying to find purchase on a frozen flow... Finally, pumping out, I under-clinged the roof, pasted a foot out to the right onto a bare overhang and pulled up into a knee-bar scum and then into a layback - some distance above my last piece of gear below the ice-flow. From there, I proceeded... to make some of the most improbable and fantastic moves I've pulled in a long time, and shall remember for some time to come. YMMV - depending on ice and style.
From a good rest just above the roof, the ice was passed. There is a short distance of moderate, but potentially exhausted climbing to a ledge, but it could be runout in the absence of more fist-sized gear. From the ledge, one can belay or step up and left into a left-facing corner (use long runners) and ride a predominantly 3-4" easy crack for 50 more feet to the final belay slot up top. Set a belay from 2- 3.5" gear.
The summit and walk-off can be gained via a scramble (5.6-ish, 20 feet) up and to the climber's right in that slot.
I totally encourage people to do this infrequently passed route - and advise to have a lot of "margin" Vs the assigned 5.10 grade if it is winter and might be holding ice.
A solid rack from medium stoppers to large cams (6") though some of the largest pieces are optional, not required. A rack to 4" could make do. Several extras from 2.5-4" would be useful for certain, especially if not taking the wide stuff. Take long slings if you intend to link this ground up and a single long pitch (nearly 200') as we did.
By Jason Haas
Feb 27, 2012
rating: 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
I agree this route is sandbagged, even for Turkey. Even without the ice, the lip is too wide for jamming. It's a #5 Camalot at the lip, and a #6 pulling over it, forcing you to wrestle/layback the lip. Very strenuous, especially for a "5.10".