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Turkey Shoot

5.9, Trad, 3 pitches,  Avg: 3.5 from 89 votes
FA: unknown
Colorado > S Platte > Turkey Rocks > Turkey Rock


This route is on Turkey Rock.

It is a fun route for the grade, if you like wide sections but with good gear this is your route. If you don't like wide climbs, the excellent fun hand-jams on the 2nd pitch makes the wide sections worth it. On the left side of Turkey Rock, before the gully starts to steepen, locate a wide crack system that goes up to a small roof.

P1. The first pitch goes up the wide crack. Chimney, arm-bar, or squeeze youself up the climb to a good stance 10' below the roof. Bring your large gear for sanity on this pitch, otherwise small gear can be found within the crack.

P2. The second pitch traverses right around the roof, and gains an excellent hand-jammin crack. After 80' of awesome hand-jammin' you will find a bivy sized ledge.

P3. The last pitch continues straight up the 5.8 offwidth, or one can traverse right along the ledge to a 5.6 chimney system that will lead to the top.

Walk off to the right.


Standard rack plus large gear (#4-#5 cams) make the route enjoyable.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

1975, climbers on Turkey Shoot.
[Hide Photo] 1975, climbers on Turkey Shoot.
Avoiding the crack on the 2nd pitch of Turkey Shoot.
[Hide Photo] Avoiding the crack on the 2nd pitch of Turkey Shoot.
Pitch 3.<br>
A #6 is nice to have, You can back clean it from secure stances and use it again a few times on the pitch....<br>
[Hide Photo] Pitch 3. A #6 is nice to have, You can back clean it from secure stances and use it again a few times on the pitch.... Photo:Eggleston
Amy Haessly on the 1st pitch of Turkey Shoot.
[Hide Photo] Amy Haessly on the 1st pitch of Turkey Shoot.
The wide start of pitch 3.
[Hide Photo] The wide start of pitch 3.
Exiting the pitch 1 chimney.
[Hide Photo] Exiting the pitch 1 chimney.
High on the 1st pitch of Turkey Shoot.
[Hide Photo] High on the 1st pitch of Turkey Shoot.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

[Hide Comment] This is a great route. The whole second pitch is really fun and has excellent jamming and great gear with good exposure coming aroung the roof. You definitely want a couple big cams (#4 Camalot) for the wide parts on pitches 1 and 3, but they're not too hard if you use small but abundant features on the faces for your feet. Pitches 1 and 2 are long a make for good, sustained 5.9 climbing. Mar 25, 2002
[Hide Comment] I don't know how you couldn't give this three stars. I loved it. May 11, 2002
[Hide Comment] Turkey Shoot is one of the first routes at Turkey Rock. It was established by Don Doucette, Mike Dudley and Art Howells in 1969 or 1970. Originally had some aid moves. The name came after some irate yahoo landowner starting shooting at them and bullets were bouncing off the rock. May 20, 2003
[Hide Comment] Hubbel's guide says pro to 3.5". Trout's guide says bring fist size pro. The largest piece we brought was a #4 friend. Done this way, expect some lengthy runouts on the first pitch. Also, expect about 15 feet of unprotected offwidth climbing on the last pitch right off the large ledge. There is certainly as much, if not more, wide stuff than perfect hand crack on this one. Aug 23, 2004
Matt Juth
[Hide Comment] I always bring a Number 5 when doing the last pitch finish for Turkey Shoot and Chopping Block. It's nice to have a Number 4 for the first pitch also. Aug 24, 2004
Golden, CO
[Hide Comment] Didn't have a #5 but if you don't mind the extra weight a #6 will definitely give you a piece of mind on the first and third pitch. Great route. Apr 5, 2006
[Hide Comment] Three Stars for sure!! A #5 will make you feel good but, you'll still be running it out. If your at your limit on 5.8 (especially OW) then I would suggest bring another #5 or maybe even #6 to make the top pitch more fun. As it was, we just had a single set to a #5 and no worries. Someone else said it though. . . Expect more wide crack than hand crack.

P.S. pulling out of the chimney for the pitch 1 crux was wicked fun though!!! You can just wedge your body in there and get a no-hand rest while you figure out the exit moves. Nov 27, 2006
[Hide Comment] This was one of the funnest routes that I have climbed so far. The second pitch is pretty sustained and really wore me out. Thanks to Roland my partner for the awesome leads. There are plenty of holds along the right side face of the crack, especially on the chimney. I usually have a tendency to "stuff" myself in the chimney which proves entertaining to all who watch me climb. This is a Great route. May 20, 2007
Meredith DB
Boulder, CO
[Hide Comment] This route is classic. Definitely worth doing.

We had no problems placing Camalots #4, #5, and #6 on this route. If you don't like runouts, bring the big gear. Jun 5, 2009
Brandon Koch
Moab, Ut
[Hide Comment] A fine route. A #5 for halfway up and a fistful of #4s will make pro comfortable. Be advised though, as of 6/3/12, the anchors are two old knifes. I backed up the anchor with a 0.75, but rapping isn't the most reassuring experience.... Jun 3, 2012
David Appelhans
Broomfield, CO
[Hide Comment] Pitch 1 and 2 combine for one super 70m pitch. This avoids what looked like a crowded chimney belay but requires you be solid at the grade and have endurance. I brought BD 0.5-3 (2x), and singles of 4 and 5 plus a couple hand-sized hexes, and I was still pretty run out on some of the fist sections. Next time I'd bring an extra #3. Sep 24, 2012
Longmont, CO
[Hide Comment] Tried the chimney variation on pitch 3 today. Had already climbed a bunch of routes and was feeling tired.... Felt like a 5.7+ squeeze chimney toward the top. Definitely strenuous but not too hard. I would still recommend this as a decent option to top out on, just know it is a "squeeze" chimney and not just a chimney. I see a distinct difference. Jun 13, 2013
Sam Jones
Colorado springs
[Hide Comment] Linked the first two pitches. I would have liked to have a #4 for the last 35' of the second pitch. Probably goes about 5.6 or 5.7 if you want to run it out. Apr 30, 2018