Mt Toubkal & High Atlas Winter Ascent (7 Days)
Mount Toubkal Overview
Trekking in Morocco has to be one of the best ways to discover this intoxicating country, getting off the beaten track and exploring the Atlas Mountains visiting traditional Berber villages that have changed very little in centuries, climbing Mount Toubkal and scaling 4000m peaks makes Morocco a great destination for Adventure.
This trip is a 7 day winter ascent of North Africa’s highest mountains. Climbing Mount Toubkal (4167m) and Quanoukrim (4088m) is an exhilarating challenge that requires little winter mountaineering experience but rewards you with truly outstanding panoramic views of the High Atlas.
Our Winter climb is great introduction to winter walking, the use of crampons and ice axe are required on most trips and you will get plenty of time to practice your winter skills before summit day, our trips is designed as a non-technical winter climbs. Some winter walking experience is recommended before joining this trip but not essential.
UK. Trekking leader (Groups 6+)
Satellite phone & Radio communications
1 nights’ accommodation in Marrakech
2 nights’ accommodation in Imlil
3 nights’ accommodation in Neltner Refuge
Qualified Moroccan Mountain Guide
Local GuideTransfers as required for the tour
Permits / Conservations and entrances as required for the tour
15% Discount Voucher at Cotswold Outdoor Clothing
Tipping – recommend £20.00
Personal drinks & Expenses
Meals in Marrakech
Hot showers at the Neltner Refuge available at 10 Dirhams per person, per shower
Depart the U.K. arrive in Marrakech and spend time exploring the souks and visit the Djemaa el Fna before our transfer to the Berber Village of Imlil, Overnight Imlil.
Acclimatisation and Village Walk
Today is a planned acclimatisation day trekking through the Imlil valley which is home to tiny hamlets and villages of the ethnic Berbers, a herding and farming community. Our trek leads us through groves of cherry and walnut trees, making our way up Tizi Mzik 2489mt for lunch before returning to our guest house for afternoon mint tea. The evening will be spent preparing our kit for the following days.
6hrs trekking approx 12km
Acclimatisation and Winter Skills
Early morning we load up all equipment and food supplies and start our trek for the Neltner Refuge. slowly making our way up the Mizane valley stopping at the shrine of Sidi Chamarouch for lunch then onto the refuge in Neltner 3208mt. If time allows we will practice some basic winter skills and a short acclimatisation walk. There will also be option to relax at the refuge for the afternoon and enjoy the stunning views.
6hrs trekking approx. 12km
Day 4 – Quanoukrim Summit
Today is another early start as we leave the refuge early morning and continue up the Mizane valley. Our aim for today is the summit of Quanoukrim (4088m) which is the 2nd highest summit in the High Atlas. Again we will get the chance to practise more winter skills throughout the day. Approx 9 hrs walking
Summit Mt Toubkal
Today we begin our trek to the summit of Mount Toubkal. The ascent starts climbing steeply as soon as we leave Neltner Refuge. We make our way up the South Cwm before traversing the south ridge to the summit. Once on the summit you can enjoy the vista across the surrounding landscape which are simply quite breathtaking with unrestricted views in every direction, from the Marrakesh Plain to the High Atlas in the north and as far south as the Anti-Atlas and the Sahara. We will retrace our steps when we return down the mountain and head back to the Toubkal Refuge where we will spend the night.
7hrs trekking approx. 10km
Refuge to Imil
After a good breakfast we depart the refuge and start our descent to Imlil village stopping on route to enjoy the views of the Toubkal Massif. On arrival in Imlil we will transfer to Marrakech spending the evening exploring the souks and visit the Djemaa el Fna an open-air market with food stalls, snake charmers, water sellers, travelling musicians and acrobats, along with traditional Moroccan food and a cold beer. Overnight in a traditional Riad
6hrs trekking approx. 15km
Imlil to Marrakech
After a relaxing breakfast it’s a short drive back to Marrakech. Time permitting we can do some last minute bargain hunting before getting our flight back to the U.K.
Weather & Safety
The weather during the winter months on Mount Toubkal are generally sunny days and cold nights. However, conditions can change very quickly. What can start out as a good day can soon become very poor. It is very important to be well equipped and prepared for all conditions.
Winter walking can be dangerous and although we take important steps to manage and minimise this risk we can never eradicate it altogether. The main danger is injury from avalanche or falling then sliding down a snow slope.
Although the guides can assist you in becoming accustomed to the use of ice axes and crampons the trip is not a winter skills training course. If you have not used ice axes or crampons before it is essential that you feel confident in picking up the necessary skills.
All our guides are first aid trained and carry fully equipped medical kits for serious medical emergencies. There are no compulsory vaccinations for Morocco but we recommend you consult your GP before departure. A good level of fitness is required for this trip.
This trip goes to high altitudes where there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). Our itinerary is designed to enable you to acclimatise to these altitudes, but you should be aware that it is still possible for you to be affected. The refuge is at 3160m and so whilst you may feel some initial effects of this you are unlikely to have any serious AMS issues. It is very important to drink plenty of water and maintain a good hydration level.
As Morocco is a Muslim country we ask that you wear suitable clothing i.e. below the knee skirts/shorts/trousers and with shoulders covered.
In Imlil we stay in a village house/gite with basic facilities. The Neltner refuge is reasonably basic and provides dormitory accommodation with a number of large communal rooms one of which is heated by an open fire.
Passport & Visa
All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their relevant embassies. Adventurous Ewe is not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.
It is a condition of this trip that you are insured against medical and personal accident. Adventurous Ewe require documentary evidence of your insurance prior to departure. We also recommend that you enrol with Global Rescue prior to embarking on your trip (optional). Global Rescue is the world’s premier provider of medical & security advisory and evacuation services.
To complete the Mount Toubkal Trek comfortably, it is preferable that you have previous experience of long walks in varied and irregular terrain. The walking is not dangerous or technically difficult, but you must be a confident walker with a good level of fitness in order to manage the sections of ascent and long duration of the trek, combined with carrying your backpack every day. Due to the unpredictability of the climate during the winter months, you will need to be prepared for walking in all conditions, as the weather can change extremely rapidly, making clothing and footwear choices important.
Walking hours stated are given as approximates only. Timings stated include lunch and photo stops and will vary depending on the pace of your group.
How to book your challenge
The easiest way to book your trip is online via the Adventurous Ewe website at simply click Dates and Availability. You will need to pay a non-refundable deposit of £140.00 at the time of booking. It is possible to reserve a place on this trek by email to firstname.lastname@example.org, however you will need to pay your deposit of £140.00 to confirm your place on this trek together with completing a booking form. The full balance is required to be paid no less than 4 weeks prior to departure.