Recent experiments conducted under the Optical RF Communications Adjunct program demonstrate and validate the viability of hybrid free space optical communications links in heavy atmospheric turbulence. Long range air-to-mountain link closures were established under extreme atmospheric turbulence. The system implemented adaptive mechanisms such as adaptive optics, an optical automatic gain controller, forward error correction coding, and link-level retransmission to achieve low packet error rates for long distance links with heavy turbulence. The system, experiments, and results are presented and comparisons are made to statistical prediction models.© (2009) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.