Morocco Atlas Mountains 6 day trip Nov 19

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by Will Rogers, Nov 26, 2019.

  1. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Stopped in Amassine where the track turned into a brand new road complete with guard rails all the way to Anezal. You could have a great trip to Morocco on any type of road bike. IMG_2371.JPG IMG_2375.JPG
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  2. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Tazenakht didn't feel too appealing so fast forward on the tarmac to Foum Zguid - a laid-back town on the edge of the Sahara. IMG_2393.JPG
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  3. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    The hotel looked like something out of Beau Geste. IMG_2381.JPG
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  4. Undocumented

    Undocumented Been here awhile

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    Great. Thank you. More.
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  5. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    The abandoned mud brick buildings on the edge of Foum Zquid that are a feature of Moroccan Atlas towns. Some are being turned into Auberges and Kasbah hotels but mostly they are collapsing ruins. IMG_2383.JPG IMG_2387.JPG
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  6. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    You see many lorries with gravity defying loads like this. IMG_2398.JPG IMG_2399.JPG
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  7. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Day 3 took us on the trail over the mountains to Issil (MA7 in Chris Scott's Route Guide).

    We had thought of heading out from Foum Zguid into the Sahara but reckoned that it would be unwise on rented bikes with no spares or tools (Phil had brought tyre levers and duct tape and I had a penknife/multi-tool). Anyway, the Honda 250's would be underpowered riding for long periods at full throttle on sand.

    Before setting off we stopped for coffee at the cafe by the roundabout and ran into a Dutchman called Peter - a Saharan traveller since the 1980's who runs a motorbike guided tours business in Morocco using air-cooled Yamaha 600's and a back-up vehicle. We shared some memories of Algeria. Peter is known as 'Peter Ouarzazate' on Facebook.

    The tarmac ended in Amtazguine. IMG_2411.JPG
    #27
  8. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    You probably wouldn't want to do this route on anything other than a light-weight bike. The first five miles were a crawl out of the village crossing a rocky oued (dry watercourse) and then up canyons with some sheer drops. It was mostly first and second gear.

    This was the only piste where we didn't meet any other traffic at all. It was probably impassable to even the most extreme 4x4s due to landslides high up the valley and washouts lower down where you had to go down into the oued and then find a way back onto the piste up steep sandy banks. There were no recent vehicle tyre tracks.

    The pictures don't show the trickiest bits because at those times you just want to keep going and not stop. IMG_2419.JPG IMG_2413.JPG
    #28
  9. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Phil and I have been riding bikes for over 40 years - a mix of road, road-racing and offroad. We'd both done enduro practice sessions with Patsy Quick's 'Desert Rose Racing' based in Sussex. 33 years ago I was in Morocco on a Kawasaki KL250 at the end of a 4,000 mile trip through Tunisia and Algeria.

    Morocco is very relaxed now compared to the 1980's. We had a friendly reception everywhere we went. This is my advrider RR about that North Africa trip in 1986 - I'm still using the same 'Swagman' throw over panniers!

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/summer-in-the-sahara-on-a-kl250-to-djanet-tamanrasset-1986.1206978/
    Sahara 1986 30 Algeria to Djanet Plateau de Fadnoun.jpg
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  10. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Back on the piste to Issil the going got a bit easier and the stark mountain scenery was awesome. I got stuck for a while trying to get over a landslip of rock and sand. There was a big drop so I didn't want to launch it. The Mitas rear tyre was lacking grip and digging in. After several attempts, I got off the bike and pushed it up and over the landslip with the engine in first gear.

    In the meantime Phil had gone ahead. All of the piste so far had been ridden standing up so when he sat down he was surprised to find that his seat had gone missing! Luckily he found it back down the piste and it hadn't fallen into the canyon. He tied the seat on with a bungee after that. IMG_2675.PNG

    Attached Files:

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  11. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    The temperature was perfect - warm enough just to ride in a shirt. Phil took the lining out of his jacket. IMG_2421.JPG
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  12. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Some picture stops were necessary... (all taken on an Apple iphone) IMG_2425.JPG IMG_2437.JPG IMG_2439.JPG
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  13. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Approaching the top of the pass IMG_2441.JPG
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  14. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Amazing views down to Issil... IMG_2461.JPG IMG_2459.JPG
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  15. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    ...plus a sense of achievement IMG_2456.JPG IMG_2457.JPG
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  16. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Nice open piste to get some speed up... IMG_2470.JPG
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  17. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    ...and then back to the tarmac IMG_2473.JPG
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  18. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Lunch in Tazenakht and then onto Agdz in the Draa Valley where we found a hotel in the old kasr. IMG_2500.JPG
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  19. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Not bad for 150 Dirhams (£12/$15) per night - we were the only guests in the whole place. It was really quiet! IMG_2509.JPG IMG_2508.JPG
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  20. Will Rogers

    Will Rogers Been here awhile

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    Breakfast by the pool was included IMG_2516.JPG
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