Morroco Atlas Mountains
February 2024

 Ait Ben Haddou - Amsouzart Valley
5 February 2024


Early moning was a bus transfer to our starting point, which was over one mountain but at the bottom of another mountain, which we had to climb over.  The road could have been perfectly acceptable, but road works to widen it meant that there was a lot of gravel and stone on the surface which made cycling up the grade difficult.  Most of the morning was spent climbing up some thousands of feet, and after a short descent we were given lunch by our travelling cook who is able to produce the most amazing and varied picnic lunches from the back of a Transit van that has seen better days.

Lunch over, there was, inevitably, another mountain to climb, but then followed by a 9 mile downhill with switchbacks, followed by a benign short climb to our rustic B & B, with communal toilets and showers !  Shock horror !  We had been told that this would be the most primitive accommodation that we would encounter, up in the hills and very rural.  It was.  Also, once the sun went down it became very chilly, but dinner was served quite insistently on a cold terrace.  I brought out my blanket from my room to swathe myself in so that I could keep warm while eating.  Others followed the trend

The village we are in is very, well, rustic, peasant, countryside and rural, with the usual hotchpotch of tumble down houses, donkeys along the roads, little kids smiling and gesturing for sweets, and the call to prayer from the local mosque.  I’ve heard a fair few  Muezzin doing the call to prayer over the last few days, and some are better than others.  The one in Amzouzart is definitely in need of improvement. Most villages are unclean and unkempt.  Lots of rubbish and rubble and worse.  As I pass, I keep thinking to myself that with a couple of hours work with a brush and shovel, I could clean the place up.  I guess they don’t even notice.  Different values.

Just further up the valley is allegedly the highest peak in North Africa and the highest natural lake, which at this time of year should be covered in snow.  However, no sign of snow, we are told because of global warming.  Morocco, we are told, even has some ski resorts, which are struggling because of the lack of snow over the last few years.

Swathed in big blankets to keep warm at the high altitude, I slept reasonably well, until 5:30 AM when the Amzouzart Muezzin set to braying like some demented donkey.  God loves a trier.


DAY 1 - London - Marrakesh

DAY 2  - Marrakesh - Ait Ben Haddou

DAY 3  - Ait Ben Haddou - Amsouzart Valley

DAY 4 - Amzouzart Valley - Oulet Berhil

 DAY 5 - Oulet Berhill - Tafraoute

DAY 5 - Tafraoute Rest Day

DAY 6 - Tafraoute -Agadir

DAY 7 - Agadir - Immouzer

Day 8 - Immouzer - Marrakesh

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