Due south of the 1000-year-old pink walled city of Marrakech, the Atlas Mountains rise to a commanding 4000 metres and include the famous Mount Toubkal (4167m), the highest peak in North Africa and my target for this little expedition.
The planned trek & summit route
Reached after a two hour drive across the Moroccan plains on the back of an overnight in Marrakech my adventure really begins with a strenuous five hour hike up to the Neltner Refuge (Base Camp) which at just over 3200m is strategically placed for a good summit bid the following day.
However, to fit this trek and climb into the two days I’ve allocated myself (Marrakech to Marrakech) I must make my ascent to the summit from the Neltner Refuge in the early hours of Sunday morning, return to the roadhead at the village of Imlil upon descent and then transfer back to Marrakech within a single, long, hot and strenuous day. Take into account the altitude, a mountain summit and a hard trek through the rough foothills of the Atlas and I’m sure you’ll agree that I have a really challenging adventure on my hands!
The long weekend, although short and tough, will also hopefully offer me something else, a chance to experience some of the delights of Morocco and the High Atlas Mountains – a world far removed from my own pampered western existence. From the colourful souks of Marrakech, with their vendors of spices, carpets and leather goods, to the pretty stone-built villages of the Berber people, I hope this will be Morocco at its most authentic and I can’t wait to get the travelling and adventure underway!
Be sure to follow live on the map that I’ve set up on the TrackMyTour page where I will be updating my position with live Tweets from the field augmented with Photo’s and GPS positions etc.
I leave on the 6th June. Trip reports and photos upon my safe return.