Ski touring in Morocco – Atlas mountains skiing
Airport transfer to the Riad in Marrakech city
Arrive in Marrakech particularly in Marrakech airport. Here, you will find your transport waiting to pick you directly to the hotel, a drive of 15 minutes. After a rest in your hotel, you will have the chance to visit the old city during the afternoon. Then, the dinner will be provided at the hotel.
Marrakech-Imlil-azzaden valley- Refuge of Lepiney
Transfer from Marrakech to the Atlas Mountains mainly Imlil, passing by Tahnaout, Moulay Brahim Gorges, and Asni Town. The journey will begin from Imlil with your Berber team(guide, muleteers) up, along with the valley westward. Here, you will explore the beauty of Imlil and its villages. Then, continue up through a juniper forest till we get to place called Tizi Mzik (2448m) for the first break, enjoying the lunch meal with an amazing view of Imlil and Azzaden valleys. After that, we continue our journey down to Tamsoult, a summer hut for sheep and goats. Then, rising up to Lipeney refuge (3000m) where we will spend the night.
Refuge of Lepiney -Toubkal Refuge via Col Aguelzim
Enjoy a good breakfast, then start the journey of today out of Tazaghert valley, over the pass of Aguelzim (3500m altitude). Here, we start a superb ski, descending down to our next destination (Toubkal refuge at 3200m).
Toubkal Refuge-Toubkal Summit-Toubkal Refuge
Today, involves a good and challenging climbing, up to Toubkal, the highest peak in North Africa. You will have a magnificent scenery on the top, then, the descent down, skiing to Toubkal refuge again at 3207m with your guide.
Toubkal Refuge -Ouanoukrim summit-Imlil
Heading up at the summit of N’Ouanoukrim (4080m) and descent down skiing to the refuge of Toubkal for lunch. After lunch, we Head down with the crew passing Sidi Chemharouch (2300m), returning to Imlil (1750m), where we spend the night.
After breakfast, we go along the valley up, go with the way that goes over the pass of Tizi n’Tamatert (2200m). Here the lunch will be prepared for you, surrendered by surprising views of Atlas Mountains. Then, continue for an hour to climb to the of col of Iguenouane (3800m) with a complete scenery of Tachedirt valley and it’s peaks like (Angour 3600m, Likkemt 3600m, Aksoual 3920m). Descend skiing down to the guesthouse. Approx: 8-9 hours.
Today, you will more time to Discover Imenane valley by foot before you continue eastward up towards Oukaimden via col Eddi (2900m). Here, a glorious opportunity to ski down to the station of Oukaimden, the highest ski resort in Africa at 3260m. You then enjoy lunch beside the ski station before you transfer back to Marrakech.
After breakfast in the hotel, the transport will transfer you to the airport, carrying with you a fantastic memory you will tell your families and friends. We say goodbye and wishing you a good flight back home and a good life as well.
Mount Toubkal – Essential Info
At Mount Toubkal the World we believe in providing our clients with the best service and key to the enjoyment of any adventure holiday in our opinion is the balanced and up-to-date information offered by the tour operator. We are confident that the items detailed below when taken in conjunction with a reputable and reliable guidebook will enhance your Trekking experience as well as ensuring you receive the very best service from Mount Toubkal the World in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco.
M-T : STAFF
It is important that our staff in our Mount Toubkal office have experienced the wonder of High Atlas Mountains Trekking and are able to answer many of your important questions.
Mohamed, for example, has trekked in the Toubkal and Berber regions and visited many of the places included on our hiking itineraries; he has also made it to the top of Jebel Toubkal – many of the photos on our website were taken by him and his traveling companions on his various trips to the region.
M-T : GUIDES
All Mount Toubkal guides are fully licensed and are experienced from an early age in the Atlas Mountains areas, and guiding continues to be the heart and soul of who we are. We require that all of our guides undergo extensive safety training before officially joining us a mountain guide /or winter guide, local knowledge and guiding abilities. We believe that a local, licensed guide will offer more insight into the High Atlas region and Berber people as well as enhancing the local economy.
As well as a tip (see below) if you have had a great experience with your guide you may wish to offer him something of yours that will assist his duties.
Please be guided by your guide’s expert advice on difficult or exposed paths and please respect the prayers of your guide and muleteers – they will usually do this outside of walking times so as not to interrupt your hiking.
M-T : PORTERS
Most of our porters are from the Atlas Mountain region who are able to perform carrying tasks in the high atlas and around all types of trails in Toubkal. They will carry your luggage, food and other necessary items in a safe and secure way. They are very conscious of maintaining your belongings in good condition. We would like to request all our clients to go with an open up and be ready to experience all the fun and excitement of your trek, and also rest assured that our Porters and Guides are comfortable and happy people to be accompanied by. You can ask any quarries you may have about the culture, people and country. You feel very safe, comfort and pleasure after hiring a Guide and Porter.
Credentials of our Porters
– They are of mid-age and able to carry 25-30 kg stuff without any hesitation.
– They are mostly from the Atlas mountain regions and have been working in the Trekking field as a Porter for many years.
– They are strong, powerful, capable and caring.
– They have more knowledge about the trails so they may alert you about the ways and other potential hazards.
– They are very honest and humble of their personal integrity.
M-T : MULETEERS & MULES & LUGGAGE
Your team of muleteers, along with mules, will vary in number depending upon the size of your group and whether you are camping or staying in gites/refuge but they will all perform the same function which is to provide a full back up service for your hike, cook and prepare meals and set up the evening camp.
The mule team will load up your luggage, food and, if relevant, the camping equipment at the start of each day but will not always walk either at the same time, pace or route as your hiking party so it is important that you consider which items you may require to carry yourself in the morning and then again in the afternoon as on some days you may only meet up at lunch-time.
The mules are completely used to carrying the loads and it is not unusual for them to carry in excess of 80 kgs each which is equally balanced in two baskets. The muleteers take great care in both hygiene and presentation of your food and perform wonders with such limited conditions.
We recommend you take your trekking luggage in a large holdall or rucksack which can perhaps be folded up inside your main luggage if you are also traveling around the Atlas Mountains and wish to have the security of your usual suitcase(s). You should also take a suitable daypack which will carry drinking water, camera, hat, raincoat, etc. as you may not be in direct contact with your support team at all times during the day.
In winter much of the region above 2500m can be snow-covered and hiking in these areas could require the use of crampons and ice axes. High winds and precipitation in whatever form may preclude some routes and this will be discussed before you set out or can be modified at any time with the advice of your guide.
We will maintain our programme of trekking during the holy month of Ramadan but we would ask you to respect your team by allowing them the courtesy of eating an early breakfast (before sunrise) and to avoid, where possible, drinking, smoking and snacking immediately in front of them during the day – they will, of course, prepare the usual lunch though as part of their duties.
It is important to drink lots of water during your hike; water can be purchased in Marrakech before you set off or in Imlil. It is also possible to obtain water from small kiosks in many villages and from the trailhead of Imlil and at the Toubkal refuge. You will need to carry some of this yourself but your mules will carry some more; please discuss with your guide the water requirements on a regular basis.
Breakfast – tea, coffee, juice, fruit, milk, bread, butter, jam, cheese, porridge
Picnic lunch – fresh Moroccan salad, cheese, sliced sausage, tinned tuna fish and sardines, bread, fruit, mint tea (pasta, beans, potatoes, and rice can also be included).
Dinner – Soup, Tajine (chicken or mutton with vegetables), spaghetti, couscous (main courses rotate depending on the duration of the trek, although you are more likely to get couscous on a Friday), bread, coffee, tea, cake, fruit.
* Vegetarians, vegans and those with special dietary requirements of any kind need to advise at time of reservation.
Naturally, tipping is an entirely personal matter and a little goes a long way in Morocco; however, we are always asked for a little guidance so here is what we would consider as fair, amounts refer to your guide, a smaller amount can be given to your muleteer team:
1-3 days hiking –220 DHS per person total
4-7 days hiking – 300 DHS per person total
8 days + hiking – 350 DHS per person total
Of course, you can offer more if you wish; tips are usually held and then passed over during a handshake to avoid any embarrassment or undue attention to the matter.
GRADING OF HIKES
Whilst we try to ensure that our descriptions are accurate for most people wishing to undertake hiking in the Atlas Mountains, clearly, there are many different factors that contribute to the difficulty of a particular hike.
These include the length of day, terrain, altitude and weather conditions. Since these factors are necessarily variable, any system of grades can only provide a general indication.
We have tried to make our system as clear as possible but it cannot account for personal abilities or experience.
CLIMBING MOUNT TOUBKAL
The hike to the top of this peak which is almost 960m up from the refuge will usually take at least 3 hrs and start at 5 am followed by a fairly hard 2-3 hrs walk down amongst the loose rocks by another route where possible. It is essential that you are fully prepared for what is for many people a demanding walk. Try to get a good sleep the night before and a good breakfast (plus a Mars bar!) before setting off.
You are likely to need warm clothes all year round and strong boots are essential, even in summer a warm hat would be useful as well as some protection from the wind. If you climb down the northern route then look out for the wreckage of a plane which hit Toubkal in bad weather in the early 1960s, purported to be carrying guns from Portugal.
It is vitally important that you respect the mountain environment; litter, in particular, is damaging the landscape and can injure animals. Please, please take all your litter home or drop it off at suitable points.
Mount Toubkal guiding teams are proud guardians of their natural heritage and will ensure that rubbish is collected and either taken out or burned where possible. In fact, our guiding teams have been known to take a few extra minutes to collect and burn the rubbish of groups that were not so environmentally sensitive. Some organic matter can be left as much of it will be eaten by the local goats.
The refuge is simple but offers warm showers, a few western toilets and a warm lounge with electric lighting in which to read or chat with your fellow hikers. There is a full kitchen for your team to cook in and a couple of dining areas. Please note that boots must not be worn in the refuge so sandals, shoes or flip-flops should be taken to keep your feet (and socks) warm, dry and clean.
Clothing and Equipment
You should dress according to the altitude and the environment you will be located in. Most treks are in high altitude climates in remote areas. Therefore, there are often large temperature swings. Temperatures are often colder at high altitudes.
Clothing for Trekking
- Trekking boots or lightweight walking shoes. Having comfortable footwear is essential for a good trek. Make sure all footwear is broken in well prior to your trek. Do not break in boots on your trek,
- A tracksuit and a pair of track shoes to wear in the mountain refuge,
- Two pairs of woolen socks for trekking shoes and track shoes,
- Warm down jacket and rainproof jacket with hood for protection from rain,
- A Woolen hat for the cold and sun hat or cap for sunny days
- A pair of woolen gloves and pair sandals to wear in the mountain refuge,
- Two cotton T-shirts and two pairs of long shorts/skirts
- Woolen shirts and thick sweaters as well as wind and waterproof trousers,
- Pair of light or heavyweight trouser and one lightweight long sleeve shirt,
- Two pairs of thermal undergarments,
Equipment for Trekking
- Trekking or duffle bag to carry trekking gear. Mount Toubkal can provide a duffle bag for you to borrow during your trek. This will be returned after your trek,
- Ice Axe and crampons,
- Trekking daypack for personal items such as water, snacks, extra layers and camera,
- Water bottles,
- Sleeping bag,
- Travel Pillow,
- Ski poles,
- Ski Boots
- Small torchlight or headlamp with spare batteries,
- Lip balm with sunblock in it,
- handkerchief or wiping papers,
- Money belt,
- First-aid kit,
Trekking equipment is available at Imlil Center. Mount-Toubkal can recommend shops for you to purchase equipment. If you do not wish to buy equipment, you can easily hire or rent them for the duration of your trek at reasonable prices.
- Round-trip Transportation between the trek and your accommodation in Marrakech.
- Expert skiing guide, English-speaking
- Mules and muleteers to carry your luggage.
- Porters for luggage from snowline to the Atlas Mountain huts (refuge).
- Berber Cook
- All meals on the trek
- Accommodation in a Mountain Hut (Toubkal refuge).
- Travel insurance
- Ski equipment
- Soft/alcoholic drinks
- Tips and personal expenses
- Ice Axe
- walking crampons