Team leader and updates: Mike Wynne
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The snow is still deep, the rivers are high but the cherries are ripe!
Last Saturday I flew out to Marrakesh with our High Atlas Summits group and their leader Rob Simpson. It was a cool 27 degrees when we landed in Marrakech late afternoon. After queuing for 75 minutes to get through passport control we eventually met the guide and transferred to the hotel Imilchil where we met with Our Australian client Simon and headed to the min square to change money and find something to eat.
I sat with the guide, Mohamed, and discussed the planned itinerary. The Atlas has had a lot of snow this winter, and two of the key high passes are still blocked. With the June heat the remaining snow is melting fast and causing high river levels, especially in the afternoon. As the scheduled route was due to pass through a narrow gorge on day 4, we decided we would have to go to ‘plan B’ and follow a circuit to the north rather than the planned one to the south.
I accompanied the group up to Aremd on Sunday and we all enjoyed a nice acclimatization walk above the village in there afternoon. On Monday morning I saw them set off towards Tachedirt and returned to Marrakech to make final preparations for my group who are arriving on Wednesday and aiming to ascend the four highest summits in Morocco during their 11-day programme
The Team are all set and ready to go.
Already for the start to our first camp, today we climb 450m slowly to acclimatise.
Yesterday the group battled strong winds to reach the West summit of Mt Goun but decided against going for the true summit due to 90mph winds.
They are now just about back in to the valley and hotel to enjoy showers and comfortable beds. and heading to the Toubkal area tomorrow. The storms have cleared away now so fingers crossed for more sunshine!
Mike has just called in. All are well and are at the Refuge near to Mt Toubkal at 3200m. This afternoon they have the choice of basking in the sunshine or going on an acclimatisation walk with Mike. All are well and enjoying the good food and the challenge of the mountains.
Tomorrow they aim to ascend the twin summits of Ouanoukrim at 4089m and if the weather holds then plan to ascend Mt Toubkal the day after. The forecast looks good with clear skies and less wind than previously. Good luck to the team!
Team have just returned back to the refuge after successfully summiting the 2nd & 3rd highest peaks in North Africa
Summit!! Just back from summiting Toubkal the highest peak in North Africa! 4 peaks in 8 days!!