4000m Peaks of the High Atlas
- Trekking & Hiking
- Trekking peaks
our UK team
Arrive in Marrakesh and transfer to your hotel We provide transfers at 5.30pm and 7.30pm. After clearing immigration and collecting your luggage, exit the arrivals building and look out for one of our team holding a KANDOO sign.
Today we transfer by minibus from Marrakesh to Oukaimeden, a journey of around 2 hours. We will meet our mule drivers, load our luggage and begin our trek. Our first objective is the pass of Tizin’Eddi at 2980m. From the top we will have panoramic views of the Imane valley and the High Atlas summits. We descend to the village of Tachedirt and continue a little further to Fousaou where we set up camp at 2300m.
This morning after breakfast we head east up the valley to reach the col of Tizi n’Tachedirt at 3172m. From the top there are awesome views of the summits of Bouignouane (3882m) and Jebel Aksoual (3842m). A rocky track takes us steeply down again until we are back among trees and cultivated terraces on the valley floor. We continue down to Yabassen, a colourful old village surrounded by walnut trees and make camp at 2150m.
Today we follow a balcony trail on the northern side of the valley and descend over 700m to the meeting point of the Ourika and Adrar n’Dern valleys. Along the way we will pass through the villages of Anfli, Tadrart and Chiker and eventually arrive at the gorges of Agadir n’Ait Boulmane. Here we will have lunch and set up our camp under walnut trees on the banks of the river.
From our camp by the river, a track climbs up to the beautiful secret valley of the Tamatert and Amenzel villages. On route we may spot barbary macaques in the trees above us. Keep your sandals to hand today as we will be negotiating gorges that may still be flowing with water as we head towards the pass of Tizi n’Boukchoud. Akchoub means “wood” in the Berber language and we set up camp at the base of the pass surrounded by small Juniper trees.
This morning we cross over Tizi n’Boukchoud at 2976m and take in the spectacular views of the high peaks and the wild and lesser known side of Toubkal. Dropping down into the next valley we reach the village of Adouz Azibs at the entry to the Tifnoute gorges. The peak of Adrar n’Dern, our next day’s objective, towers above us.
We are now in a part of the High Atlas that sees very few visitors and feels a thousand miles from civilisation. Today is tough day with a lot of ascent. Carrying our lunch with us, we will start at roughly 5am and climb a narrow ridge toward the summit of Adrar n'Dern at 4001m. The views become more and more spectacular as we gain height and gaze across at Jebel Sirwa and Jebel Toubkal. After a rest at the summit, we descend to the foot of Tizi n’Ourai and make camp in a meadow at around 3000m.
After a strenuous day yesterday, we take today a little more slowly. A short rise from camp takes us to the top of Tizi n’Ourai at 3100m. We then slowly descend through a volcanic landscape into the green Tizgui Valley. We will reach the village of Amsouzart at roughly 4pm, and relax for the rest of the day. Here you will find some small shops where you can buy snacks and drinks. Tonight we will stay in a basic shelter in the village where there is dormitories and a shared bathroom.
Leaving Amsouzart we ascend gradually towards Tizi n’Ouanoums, easily the most spectacular of all the High Atlas cols. We pass through Imhilen and Ait Igrane, villages buried deep within the enormous mountain landscape. Above Ait Igrane the track becomes steeper and zig zags up to the spectacular Lac d’Ifni flanked by the two highest peaks in the range, Toubkal and Ouanoukrim. After pausing for lunch by the lake we continue to the entry of the Ouanoums Gorge and make camp at 2700m.
Another big day today as we bag our second 4000m peak. second 4000m peak. We leave camp by 7am and 3 to 4 hours of ascent will take us to the top of Tizi n’Ouanoums at 3600m. We are now standing directly in between the two highest peaks in the Atlas and the views are phenomenal.
At the col, the summit of Ouanoukrim is only 400 vertical metres above us and our route to the top requires some scrambling over steep rocky sections. Once at the peak we are standing on the second highest peak in Morocco at 4088m and Toubkal lies directly in front of us. After pausing for photos, we descend to the Nelter Refuge at 3200m.
We will leave before sunrise, climbing a steep rocky track up the mountain side to reach a hanging valley known as the South Cwm where huge boulders are scattered around the track. We continue up steep scree slopes to hit the summit ridge at 3940m and follow the crest of the ridge to the summit pyramid at 4167m. You have now climbed to the highest point in North Africa! We descend the northern side of the mountain and return to the Nelter Refuge.
Today we climb out of the valley on a steep track, with some scrambling required at times, to reach the pass of Tizi n’Tadat at 3800m. Looking east, we have fantastic views of our route up Toubkal the day before. From here we take on our fourth and final big peak, Bouiguinoussem (4025m). To reach the summit we climb a steep ridge from the col which involves some scrambling in places and is certainly the most challenging terrain we have encountered so far. At the summit we have the satisfaction of knowing this is our fourth 4000m peak in the last few days. We have succeeded in this epic journey and that makes the views all the more enjoyable. We descend carefully back to the col and continue down to the shelter at Tazarat. Here the Ighouliden waterfalls cascade down the mountainside and we can take a swim at Melloul Assif. We make camp at Tamsoulte at an altitude of 2100m.
Today we take it slow and spend time taking photos and drinking in the scenery as we meander through Juniper forest to Tizi n’Mzik at 2500m. From here, we have views across to Oukaimedem peak near where our journey began. We descend to the village of Aremd where we will spend the night (in a real bed!) in one of the local shelters. As the sun starts to go down and the temperature cools, a walk around the village is a nice way to say goodbye to the mountains and the people who have been so welcoming to us for the last 13 days.
After breakfast we walk to the road head at Imlil and transfer to Marrakesh. We will arrive in late morning and check in to our hotel. We then have a free day to soak up all the fascinating sights of Marrakesh. Visit the Majorelle Gardens, Bahia Palace and Jama El f’na Market. A guided tour with an English speaking guide can be arranged.
Transfer to the airport and flight home.
This journey through the High Atlas
requires you to be in good physical condition and have some experience of
walking for up to 8 hours a day for several days in a row. The trail will vary from easy paths to very
steep and rocky terrain where some scrambling is required. There will be changes of altitude as you
climb above 3000m to cross the mountain passes and descend again. A good amount of endurance is necessary but
mental stamina is the most important thing.
This programme does not require any
technical climbing ability or experience but you should try to be in the best
condition possible before departure. You
will be accompanied by a qualified Berber mountain guide at all times as well
as your cook and mule drivers. If you have any questions about your
suitability or how to prepare for this trip please do not hesitate to contact
During your trek you will be accompanied
by a cook who will prepare all of your meals.
At breakfast there is tea and coffee, bread, jam, cheese, cornflakes and
hot porridge. A typical lunch will be a
salad with fresh vegetables, corn, boiled eggs, tuna and rice or pasta.
Evening meals will always be made up of
delicious Moroccan cuisine prepared with locally sourced ingredients. There will normally be a soup starter
followed by a tagine or stew with salad and couscous. We can provide vegetarian, vegan or gluten
free meals on request. If you have
special dietary requirements please let us know when booking your trip. In Marrakesh, at the start and end of
your trip, you can purchase meals at the hotel or head out in to the city to
find a restaurant. There is a wide range
of international and local options and you will find most dietary requirements
are catered for.
Drinks are not included in the cost of
your trip. You will need to bring a
water purification filter and at least two water bottles or flasks. During your trek you can refill your water at
natural springs, in villages or at hotels / refuges. We do not recommend the use of plastic water
bottles which must be carried out and recycled.
During your trek we provide a high quality 3 man tent per 2 people to allow for maximum space and comfort. We will also provide a foam mattress per
person and a dinning tent for use at meal times and as a communal area. There are chairs, tables, cutlery and
During the trek we will stay in two
shelters, one in Amsouzart and
one in Aremd. The shelter in Amsouzart on day 8 is basic, it has four
dormitories with mattresses placed on the floor and two shared bathrooms with
cold water. In Aremd the
shelter has 6 dormitories with real beds, hot water, communal lounge area and
access to a hamam
In Marrakesh you will be staying in a
comfortable 4 star hotel in an en-suite twin or double room. There is a
swimming pool, restaurant, bar and free WiFi.
In the High Atlas Mountains the use of
mules and muleteers (otherwise known s the Berber 4X4) is very common.
The strong and sure footed mules have spent their lives up here in the
mountains and they can transport your gear from A to B with ease. Mules
are a big source of income for the local Berber people, as a result they are
generally treated with great respect and consideration for their well
being. However there are always exceptions and in some cases mules in
the High Atlas have experienced terrible neglect and cruelty.
The main problems that
cause suffering for mules are:
Poor foot care
Working unfit mules (lame, sick or
Adventures are committed to ensuring that the mules we use on our treks
receive only the very best treatment.
To ensure the animals are never
overloaded we have placed restrictions on the weight of the luggage you can
bring with you. Your main bag must always be flexible and not weigh
more than 15kg. The maximum load a mule can carry is 80kg, this will
ensure the health and comfort of the mule as well as a sustainable working
life. We will not start trekking with mules who are obviously lame,
sick or wounded. We will never condone the use of traditional bits
which can cause terrible pain for the animals. We only work with a
select number of muleteers who we know and trust to provide the very best
level of care to their animals.
The local currency is the Moroccan Dirham
(MAD). For the most up to date exchange
rate please visit www.xe.com.
Guide: 100-160 Dirham
Cook: 85-110 Dirham
Mule drivers: 160-210 Dirham
We prefer that you do not wear cotton
clothing, including underwear, when participating in activities. When cotton
gets wet from water or sweat it ceases to insulate and does not dry quickly.
The best materials for outdoor activities are fast drying materials like
polyester or materials which are warm when wet like wool. The most powerful
materials against the wind and rain are 'breathable' materials like Gore-Tex or
Other useful equipment:
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