Wednesday, 13 July 2011

The Trip

A few months ago Brad approached me with an idea to go mountain biking in Morocco. At this stage it sounded like a great idea, but with a small child at home I doubted I would have enough brownie points in the bank to pull it off..... Some time went by and a couple of other guy's pulled out and Brad said he was going on his own! This didn't sound right to me so I started looking into it a bit more seriously and full credit to my lovely fiancee Liann, I was released from domestic duties for 1 week in July!

So, the trip started off as a fairly loose "well we'll have a couple days in Marrakesh, and then head to Imlil and Ouarzazate for some riding". Brad knows a guy called Rick Harrison (you may recall his story about Morocco in Singletrack magazine issue 49) who was able to share some potential routes with him so we had the makings of a plan. Over the weeks this has evolved into the following

Sunday 17th - Fly to Marrakesh
Monday 18th - get a lift to Imlil (1700m)
Tuesday/Wednesday - do some acclimatising rides from Imlil
Thursday 21st - attempt so summit and descent Jebel Toubkal (4167m) in the one day!
Friday 22nd - spare day (hopefully we wont still be on the mountain)
Saturday - return to Marrakesh and I fly home
Sunday/Tuesday - Brad stays on in Marrakesh to do some street riding and potentially a day ride from Marrakesh
Tuesday 26th - Brad returns home

The Jebel Toubkal (JT) ascent is obviously the pinnacle (sorry) of the trip. We're intending to ride mules to the refuge at 3200m and then go it alone from there. Mules can't go any higher than this due to the loose paths and scree. Walkers generally do the trip in 2-3 days using the refuge as a base on the way up and sometimes on the way back depending on the weather. It goes without saying that we will be getting as much still and video footage of this journey as possible! Once in a lifetime trip for us - surely.

1 comment:

  1. It was issue 47 chaps.... you're going to have a blast... Dont forget to have tea at the Kasbah Du Toubkal (see mike McHugo, owner if he is there), as well as finding the very local and hidden Hammam in the village further up the hill. I think that the Kasbah will know where it is but you will probably need a local to show you. It would also be worth the ride back, streets, steps, little lanes....

    I will drop a book, "Atlas Biker", published 1990 in to TBC... Its by Nick Crane.... that bloke off Coast.... its a great read of biking in the fully ridgid flouro days long before the Carbon Uber-bikes of now... think you will find it an interesting read....

    Good luck street riding in Marrakech.... temps probably will be close to 50 degrees...

    Catch you soon... Rick.