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Wild Turkey

5.8 R, Trad, 250 ft, 2 pitches,  Avg: 2.2 from 5 votes
FA: Richard Harrison, Jay Smith
California > Lake Tahoe > Highway 50 Corr… > Lover's Leap > Lower Buttress


Wild Turkey! The last time I had a shot of this stuff I kept it down for about 30 second before the cauldron of my stomach boiled over and I filled a nearby pint glass with a foul brew.

Chances are if you're looking at this route on you've wandered by the lower buttress, seen those two pink poot slings hanging off that old pin and wondered 'what is that thing?' That thing is the seldom repeated Wild Turkey. Located just uphill from the much smoother Crown Royal is a shallow corner with the pin about 25' up.

Start up the dike face just right of the corner before working over left. Continue up to the pin and take a good at it before you push your chips into the pot. Look up... that giant knob is close... so close.

Attack the roof, gain the knob and pull up. By the way, that move is not 5.8. Continue up and get established on the dikey slab headwall above. Wind your way up, brushing lichen from dikes. At some point falling will not be an option. Eventually you will gain a series of right facing flakes which take some gear. Right below a large dike the third flake is a good spot to belay and takes a couple hand size cams, about 150' up.

The second pitch continues up easy runout face.

Rick Sumner's old green Tahoe Rock guide says this about the route: "Rack: webbing slings and one 2 1/2 chock. Climb up a groove to the right side of a large ceiling; then traverse left along the celing's lip until possible to face climb up left to a horn. Continue until out of rope, then belay. This route has less than marginal protection."


just uphill from Crown Royal, and just downhill from the Groove. 15' left of the Groove. Look for the pin with the two pink slings. Those slings are at least 10 years old.


A fixed pin, a couple knob tie offs and a standard rack.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Crimper E6
cheltenham, UK, SW is the BEST
[Hide Comment] amazing route, E55c/6a for the UK conversion onsight, 5.8 my arse.
the first bit to the sling is unprotected E35b ish. The crux move around the overhang 6a.

The top is a moss covered death runout adventure on a poor old bolt. You can jump into the tree i was told by a local mentalist! Probably best to rap and clean the top section. Oct 25, 2012
Michael Dom
  5.9 R
[Hide Comment] Funny route, I ended up wandering all over the place trying to figure out where to go. Dec 13, 2015
[Hide Comment] I did the FA of "Lost Turkeys" a spin off of Wild Turkey simply by getting lost nd not being able or willing to reverse moves, "lost turkeys" is just left of the top half of wild turkeys and we rated it 5.10 R.. More like 5.10 S -R.. It was one i swore never to repeat nor even mention too much lol! Apr 20, 2019