- A super trekking tour.
The whole trip was very well organised by explore and very capably led by Mohamed our guide, ably assisted by Hassan. Both guides were approachable and friendly with good English and it was great to get insights into Moroccan and Berber life from their accounts. Both Mohamed and Hassan clearly enjoyed their work and this helped in setting the atmosphere for the whole tour with everyone getting on, having a good time, but also supporting each other.
The pace set was well judged and ensured that we all achieved the ultimate objective of reaching Toubkals summit as a team together which was a great moment. Many of the group were, like me, trekking to high altitude for the first time and were understandably a little nervous as to the potential for adverse altitude effects. We were fortunate as no one had any significant issues, possibly due to the acclimatisation treks and sensible pace set.
The itinerary provided an opportunity to explore Marrakech, at the beginning and end of the trip, which is an adventure in itself.
The trek itinerary was well balanced with none of the hikes being particularly strenuous and plenty of planned rests and refreshment opportunities scheduled in. Three days acclimatisation hikes over mid height mountain passes allowed our bodies to adjust, and no doubt gave Mohamed time to assess our capabilities before the big final ascent.
The accommodation was functional and relatively basic but not bad for trekking in high mountains. If you don't like sharing bedrooms with others then this may not be the tour for you. However our group got on very well and room sharing did not pose any significant problems.
Two village based guest houses were used lower down while the neltner mountain refuge was used before and after the summit trek. The latter had a real buzz about it with so many people being there for the mountain trekking, and the accommodation, although dormitories, was clean and tidy, although the shower temperatures were hit and miss(this was an issue at all the mountain accommodation that we used).
Food provided by our expedition chef was always superb and the regularly served mint tea topped up our hydration and energy levels during our treks and after the days on the mountains and was very welcome.
In summary the tour was well planned, well led and well provisioned. The group atmosphere was great and I met some smashing people from around the world. I would recommend this trip to anyone wanting to experience high mountain treks, stunning scenery, cultural experiences and who is moderately fit.
Published on: 24 September 2016