full report

mt.toubkal

Overview | 

 

Taking on Mt. Toubkal was an incredible experience, for many reasons. One being that it gives some pretty decent bragging rights, but also that the cultural experience is one we'll never forget. Not to be taken lightly, but equally, if we can do it, there's a very strong chance you can too. 
 

 

Transport | 

Car > Plane > Minibus > Feet

If you rent a car in Marrakesh you're a brave person.  Luckily taxis are cheap and enthusiastic. We flew from LDN  Stansted into Marrakesh Airport, which is a pretty cool honeycomb type structure. 
Airport security is tight, so don't do anything silly...for example on your entry visa stating "Time Traveller" as your occupation. Remy. 

 

Cost | £300 

*car park, flights, dusty flapjacks

Accommodation | 


The Moroccan equivalent to a British BnB is a Riad, which like a BnB is somewhere to sleep, unlike a BnB it's also really awesome. No roof, 3 stories, birds flying around your rooms, and a common area on the ground floor. They seem to vary a lot in quality; our next door neighbour was a dilapidated building inhabited by farm animals, which was interesting. 

We also stayed at the Toubkal Mountain Refuge, which is essentially a very basic hostel. Our bunk was shared between 8 people. Our bunk also collapsed. Which was interesting. 

Cost | £Varies so much 

Toubkal | 

 

Now then, as the tallest peak of the Atlas Mountain Range, and of North Africa, this is one to take pretty seriously. Something Dave didn't quite get the memo for; 
- Socks as gloves
- Children's size sleeping bag
- No head torch

But he's alive, and that would be his argument. 

 

The trek itself sets off from a mountain village, and winds along a river bed, up through some smaller mountain villages, eventually becoming more and more mountainous and after around 5 hours of hiking the temperature is cooling from the 34C we set off with to around 20C. 
Our mountain leader kept us fed, on track, and on a pace which was comfortable for the entire group. 

 

We got really lucky in a way, because all the people in our group were great, a couple of lads from Wales who we got on with really well, and a few others too. I guess having that shared experience, even with strangers, is a pretty powerful thing. 

At around the 8 hour mark we are lead up towards the mountain refuge, where we had dinner, fixed our collapsed bunk, drank camomile tea (ago-to drink over there), and got an early night for a 4am start the next day. 

 

Here's where things got tough, off the back of an 8 - 9 hour trek the previous day, up at 4am and up, and at this point it really is up. Steep incline, up to Toubkal Ridge, where Adam didn't have much fun, suffering with altitude sickness, and very sad that his protein bars had frozen to an un-crunchable toughness. 

 

As the summit nears, the landscape seems to open up in front of you, and as the distinct summit marker grows in the distance, the relief, and adrenaline is a welcome reward. 

Unlike our UK trips, we didn't hang around much at the summit, what with all the hypoxia n'all. 

The trek back was an immense and endurance testing day; after a brief stop for a post-summit lunch at the mountain refuge, we headed back out to return to Imlil, the village we set off from just 20 or so hours ago. 

Surprisingly, to us, Mike suffered an extreme bout of heat exhaustion, to the point that we discussed who might be able to hang about in Marrakesh if he was hospitalised. 

Not keen on the idea of checking in to the local A&E, Mike opted for a shower, a nap, and some food instead. 

But he's alive, and that would be his argument. 

Booking Details | 

 

We booked this trek through UK based adventure travel company 'Much Better Adventures', after our experience we couldn't recommend them more. 

 

Cost | £1200

Total Cost | £1600 

4 Adults, Accommodation, Flights, & Food

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