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How to Play Turnpike Poker


TURNPIKE POKER: Each player is dealt 5 hole cards. Four sets of 3 cards per set are placed face down on the table. One entire set is revealed after each round of betting. Use exactly 2 hole cards plus one entire 3 card set to make the best hand. May be played high-low split.

Summary of action
Deal 5 hole cards to each player. Arrange board cards.
Reveal all 3 cards of 1st set.
Reveal all 3 cards of 2nd set.
Reveal all 3 cards of 3rd set.
Reveal all 3 cards of last set.
High only or Hi-Lo Cards Speak: Showdown
High-Low Declaration: Declare

Other variations of Turnpike poker:
1. Reveal 4 cards (1 from each of the four 3 card sets) at a time. This reduces the number of betting rounds, but tends to keep more players in the hand.
2. Deal each player 4 hole cards instead of 5.

Playing Tips for Turnpike Poker


Turnpike poker can be thought of as a variation of Omaha since players must use exactly 2 of their hole cards plus one of the 3 card sets of board cards. Often it will take the nuts or second best possible hand to win. This is especially the case for the low hand if played as high-low split. A very important thing to keep in mind is that in an 8 handed game with players dealt 5 hole cards (plus 12 common cards on the board) all 52 will be in play. If a card is not on the board or in your hand somebody else has it.

Starting Hand Selection


As with most games you want to have been dealt a hand that gives many possibilities for winning. Having one or two high pair is a good start for high. Several connected cards will be helpful for straights. Suited cards provide only a small additional value since a set of board cards will all be suited infrequently. Trips in your hand are nearly worthless since you can use only 2 cards.

Obviously, for low 2A is the best start. A protected low like 32A is significantly better. 3A or 32 gives you a one card draw to the nuts. Usually, anything less than these three 2-card low hands needs a lot of help from the board and stands little chance of winning without it.

Some Low Hand Probabilities


Approximate percent probabilities for being dealt the following LOW hands as your 5 hole cards.

Low HandPercent Probability

The Common Board Cards


There are a high number of hand combinations available in Turnpike poker. It can be complicated and you need to pay very close attention. You must also be aware of all the board cards in order to help you in assessing the likely winning hands. A set must include a pair or trips in order for a full house or four of a kind to be possible. A set of board cards will only occasionally have all 3 cards suited, so flushes are not common. But, if one is possible you will probably need the nut flush. Board cards with straight possibilities are fairly common, and if no flush or pair appears on the board a straight is the likely winner. A set containing trips on the board is about a 424:1 longshot, but it bears mentioning. A pair of aces in your hand would give you the best possible full house but it may not be enough to win. With 8 players, if the case card does not appear elsewhere on the board, someone has it in their hand.

4 Card Turnpike


As mentioned earlier, when Turnpike poker is played with 8 players all 52 cards are in play. If you wish to introduce some uncertainly into the outcome try playing by dealing only 4 hole cards to each player. This will result in some cards being left over.

Approximate percent probabilities for being dealt the following LOW hands as your 4 hole cards.

Low HandPercent Probability