Morocco: Atlas Mountains Trek

Morocco: Atlas Mountains Trek

 

Sun 18 Oct – Sun 25 Oct 2020

4 days trekking
3 nights camping
Height gain 4167m
Joint celebration with cyclists
Flights NOT included

This trek goes through the High Atlas Mountains to the summit of Mount Toubkal, North Africa’s highest peak at 4167m. It’s not just a great challenge; it's an immersion into the culture of the Berber people, Morocco's original inhabitants. Few roads penetrate this craggy mountain stronghold, where the way of life has changed little over centuries.

Our journey takes us from the exotic sights of Marrakech to the remote, barren and dry High Atlas Mountain range. The route is on a mixture of rocky and sandy paths as we pass grassy meadows, towering limestone peaks to sheer red-rock canyons, isolated patches of snow and flowing rivers. We pass through traditional Berber villages which cling to the side of mountains, seemingly carved into the rock in layers of terraces that appear to defy gravity, and will see Berber women in brightly coloured dresses tending fields, and higher up, we meet nomadic shepherds in summer pastures.

The tough final ascent around sunrise is over boulders and rough scree where at the top of North Africa we will enjoy breath-taking panoramic views to the east and west over the snow-capped peaks of the High Atlas Mountains. To the south the Sahara stretches out below us and to the north the plains of Morocco. A finish in the vibrant city of Marrakesh with all of its history, bazaars and nightlife and this is a challenge with something for everyone.

 
Itinerary BOOK NOW
Day 1Sunday 18 October
Depart London to Marrakech with a 1.5hr transfer to our hotel. We meet with our guides over dinner with a full challenge briefing on the adventure ahead.
Day 2Monday 19 October • Marrakech to Azib n’Tamsoult
Trek 5hrs
Following a 1.5hr transfer south to Imlil, our trek starts at 1740m. We cross Imlil village heading west to climb the Tizi-n-Mezzik mountain pass which at a height of 2450m, gives us our first view of the magnificent Atlas mountains and the valley of Azzaden. After a hearty and well deserved picnic lunch, there’s another climb towards our first camp at Azib n’Tamsoult.
Day 3Tuesday 20 October • Azib n’Tamsoult to Mount Toubkal Base Camp
Trek 6hrs
Today involves a fairly stiff climb out of the Azzaden Valley to the Toubkal refuge over the Aguelzim mountain pass at 3600m. There’s no escaping the tremendous views of the Atlas Mountains as we lunch and then continue down to the Toubkal Hut (3200m), where base camp is established in preparation for the big climb the following day.
Day 4Wednesday 21 October • Mount Toubkal Ascent
Trek 9-11hrs
It’s an early start today as we head towards the summit of Toubkal at 4157m to enjoy the panoramic views of the Mountains and the Sahara Desert. The trekking becomes steeper and more rugged as we climb higher, taking it slowly as we adjust to climbing at altitude, but the views become increasingly more spectaular. We return to base camp by the same route for a second night stay – celebrating that the hardest part is over.
Day 5Thursday 22 October • Toubkal Base Camp to Marrakesh
Trek 4/5hrs
Retracing our steps, we take the well work path past the refuge and back to Imlil, transferring on to Marrakech. It’s a welcome relief to check into a comfortable hotel with a free evening to explore the vibrant souks in the Medina (old town).
Day 6Friday 23 October • Marrakech
After the exertion of the previous days of climbing but revelling in completing one of the highest peaks of Africa, we’ve got an enjoyable tour of the Majorelle Gardens to look forward to – a 2.5 acre botanical garden and artist’s landscape in Marrakech. There’s a free afternoon, but don’t wander too far as we need to be back at the hotel to greet the cyclists coming in from their ride of the Atlas Mountains. it’ll be great to see them as we’ll hopefully connect with the synagogue in Marrakesh and all walk over together to see in the Sabbath in a more traditional setting. Dinner in a local restaurant for all and we’ll celebrate our achievements into the morning.
Day 7Saturday 24 October
With a free day in Marrakech, there is plenty of time to explore this vibrant city, the Jewish Quarters and cemetery before meeting with fellow challengers for a fun and relaxed dinner.
Day 8Sunday 25 October
Transfer from the hotel back to the airport for the return journey home.
 
What’s included BOOK NOW
Airport Transfers if taking the recommended flights/meeting at the specified point and time
Twin-sharing accommodation in good quality hotel at start and upgraded hotel at finish of trek
3 nights of camping
All meals – vegetarian -with the exception of lunches on non-trekking days. Includes joint celebration meal in Marrakech at end of trek
Local guides, support team and trek doctor
Mules and muleteers and daily transfer of luggage
Entrance to Majorelle Gardens
FREE Norwood trek jersey

What’s not included

International return flights from London to Marrakech. Flight time 4hrs 40mins
Airport transfers outside of the times of meeting the recommended flights. Please note, that there will be a wait at the airport if you are arriving on the earlier Easyjet flight
Lunch on non-trekking days
Personal trek clothing, boots, trekking poles and sleeping bag
Travel insurance, tips, gratuities and personal expenses
 
How challenging is it? BOOK NOW

Overall this is a tough trek that requires a very high level of physical fitness. The terrain and length of time you spend walking and extremes of temperatures could present a tough, physical and mental challenge. You should be prepared for the rigours of trekking for long hours and the adventures of sleeping in basic camp conditions in cold conditions – and an open mind to new cultures. While not technically difficult, you will encounter a variety of terrain, some rocky surface, big ascents and descents plus an altitude of 4167m.

This itinerary is complex and subject to change. There will be an alternative trekking option for those unable to complete the final ascent to the summit which does require climbing at altitude.

 

Any questions?

Talk to Challenges on 020 8420 6811 or email challenges@norwood.org.uk

Our training guide
 

Your Details

*
*
*
*
Your Date of Birth*
/ /

Your Address

 
*
*
*

Booking Details

Choose your fundraising option:

Full fundraising - raise at least £2,450

Cover your costs - raise at least £1,495

No fundraising needed

Total to pay today:

Your challenge preferences

Jersey size

Rooming options

All challenges are priced on a room sharing basis. Single rooms are available at an additional cost based on and subject to availability. Please select one of the following:

Have you been on a Norwood challenge before?

For group activities and arrangements, are you happy for us to share your contact details with fellow challenge team mates?

Terms and Conditions

To be read in conjunction with the individual Terms and Conditions of any third party operator working with Norwood in organising this challenge.

1. Your Challenge

(a) To enter this challenge you must complete the online registration form. On receipt of a completed registration form and the registration deposit, you will receive confirmation of your payment and an information pack containing full details of the event. Together these form a binding contract which is subject to these terms and conditions.

(b) We will try to accommodate any special requirements as detailed in your booking subject to availability. However we cannot guarantee that these will be provided and any failure to do so is not constituted as a breach of these terms and conditions.

(c) To enter this challenge you must be at least 18 years old by the date of departure or accompanied by a parent or guardian.

(d) You must hold a valid passport which has at least six months validity from the date you return to the UK. Some destinations will require two blank pages within it. It is your responsibility to ensure that all passport information provided is accurate.

While guidance will be provided for any necessary visas for a challenge - the costs of which are NOT included within the costs quoted - it will be your responsibility to make any applications. If you are refused passage and/or entry/exit to or from any of the countries, any additional costs are your responsibility.

(e) All of our challenges are designed to be physically demanding but achievable and it is your responsibility to ensure that you have the appropriate level of fitness and are in good health in order to participate. If you have any medical conditions which could be adversely affected by exercise, particularly a heart condition, or if you have any doubts about your health, please consult your doctor. You will be asked to complete an online medical form before your departure and must keep us advised of any medical conditions that develop after your registration. Failure to disclose the full details of any medical condition, or any changes that may arise prior to departure will invalidate your insurance. If you are over the age of 60 or declare any medical conditions, we will require a medical declaration form to be completed, signed and stamped by your GP.

You will be responsible for arranging any vaccinations that are required.

If while on the challenge, our doctor/medic or challenge leader gives you specific safety or medical advice aimed at protecting your welfare, you must abide by this advice.

2. Registration Fee

We do require a registration fee for this challenge and offer a seven day “cooling off” period whereby if you cancel your place within seven days of registration, we will fully refund your registration fee. Unless the event is cancelled by Norwood, the registration fee is then non-refundable and does not form part of the required sponsorship. Once your place is confirmed, a sum will be paid to the operator to cover the costs of any transportation , accommodation and ground costs.

If you have paid all of your costs for this challenge on registration and cancel more than 56 days prior to departure, then the registration fee as outlined in the brochure will be kept and the balance returned to you.

Immediately upon registration, you should ensure that you have a suitable travel and medical insurance policy in place to protect yourself against curtailment or cancellation.

3. Cancellation by you

If it becomes necessary to cancel your challenge, you may do so by notifying us in writing. Upon receipt and acknowledgement by us of your written advice, cancellation will take effect. The following charges will apply.

(a) A full refund of your registration fee if cancellation occurs within the seven day cooling off period from the date of registration.

(b) More than 56 days (8 weeks) prior to departure, loss of registration fee plus insurance premium (if taken the Norwood policy).

(c) 56 – 29 days, loss of registration fee plus 50%of the costs of the challenge as stated in our brochure, plus insurance premium.

(d) 28 – 15 days, loss of registration plus 75% of the costs of the challenge plus insurance premium.

(e) Less than 14 days prior to departure and you will be liable to the loss of your registration fee and the full costs of the challenge.

We strongly recommend that travel and medical insurance be instigated at the time of registration.

4. Cancellation of one challenge but transfer to another

If it becomes necessary for you to cancel your challenge but you are able to transfer to another challenge in the same calendar year , the below timeframes will apply

(a) More than 56 days prior to departure, your non-refundable registration fee will be transferred to your new challenge along with any sponsorship raised to date.

(b) 56 – 29 days prior to departure and costs will have been incurred for your place on the challenge. The registration fee and any sponsorship raised will therefore be used to offset any cancellation charges incurred by the charity and any balance transferred to your new challenge.

(c) 28 – 15 days, you will be liable for 75% of the cost of the challenge unless an immediate replacement can be found for your place. If an immediate replacement is found, you will lose your non-refundable deposit and will be liable for any cancellation charges. If a replacement cannot be found for your place, you will be liable for 75% of the cost of the challenge.

(d) Less than 14 days prior to departure, you will be liable for 100% of the cost of the challenge unless an immediate replacement can be found for your place. If an immediate replacement is found, you will lose your non-refundable deposit and will be liable for any cancellation charges. If a replacement cannot be found for your place, you will be liable for 100% of the cost of the challenge.

5. Cancellation by us

In the event we have to cancel the challenge whether as a result of Force Majeure or any other reason that makes it impractical to proceed with the challenge, we will provide you with a prompt and full refund of all monies that have been paid by you to us and our liability for cancellation will be capped in the amount of all monies paid by you to us. No payments are made compensating for losses or costs you incur in the case of a cancellation. You should have an appropriate insurance policy in place to protect against cancellation.

6. Travel and Medical Insurance

The registration fee does not cover insurance. You must have adequate, valid and appropriate travel insurance for your challenge which must include emergency medical expenses, air evacuation and repatriation and trip curtailment cover. It is your responsibility to ensure the details of the insurance policy are provided to us at least 8 weeks prior to departure or we reserve the right to include you on the group policy and charge you a supplement. Any false or misleading information given by you in respect of your insurance policy which may result in your stated insurance company refusing to cover your costs relating to a claim, will make you fully liable and you will be responsible for covering any cancellation charges borne by the charity.

If you withdraw in circumstances where recovery of costs can be indemnified under your travel insurance policy, you hereby agree that you will co-operate in the recovery of these charges from the insurers and any sums recovered will be paid to Norwood.

7. Challenge price and payment options

Norwood reserves the right to pass onto you, regardless of which payment option you have chosen, any additional costs associated with the challenge which have been incurred as a result of circumstances beyond our control (including the cost of fuel, tax, landing fees, accommodation and fluctuations in the exchange rate). You will be informed in writing and should the increase exceed 9% over and above what you have already paid, you have the right to cancel your booking if notice is given within one week of being informed.

8. Fundraising

By registering on this challenge and dependent upon which fundraising option you choose, you are agreeing to raise at least the minimum fundraising target as stated in the event brochure. Approximately 50% of each total (whatever the option) will be used to cover the costs of the challenge, we therefore require that at least 50% of your fundraising target should be reached at least 10 weeks prior to departure. The balance of the funds must then be sent to Norwood no later than 4 weeks following your return from the challenge.

If you are unable to reach the minimum sponsorship amount 10 weeks prior to departure, it is at the discretion of the charity as to whether your challenge place and registration fee are forfeited.

Fundraising money raised for one named event cannot subsequently be used against another event even if the minimum fundraising target for the first event has been exceeded unless (i) the sponsors have been informed and have consented to the monies being transferred or (ii) an event is cancelled or a participant unable to take part in which case the money pledged may be transferred. No sponsorships donations made to the charity will be refunded back to you directly and only back to individual donors upon written request.

It is also important to note that Gift Aid is NOT included as part of the minimum fundraising requirement.

9. Itinerary Changes

All of our challenges are complicated and may be subject to change. They are planned months in advance and sometimes changes to the itinerary are required which are beyond both our control and that of the operator we use. Should there be a significant material change prior to departure which is not as a result of a Force Majeure we will notify you as soon as possible.

10. Flights, airlines, travel arrangements and delays

You must check all information sent to you and make sure you arrive at the airport/point of departure in sufficient time. Airlines sometimes change aircraft and flight times without advance warning and you are asked to check your departure details. Changes made by airlines and to airport destinations do not constitute a material change to your challenge and do not entitle you to cancel.

Most flights are organised through scheduled airlines and we are bound by their terms and conditions.

We do not accept liability for any delays in your travel arrangements or reasonable changes in your itinerary as a result of Force Majeure.

11. Changes by you

Some changes may be made by you subject to availability. We will try to accommodate any changes as requested but any charges incurred will be passed directly to you.

12. Information, visas and other requirements

Any information or advice provided by Norwood on matters such as permits, government travel advice or warnings, visa, vaccinations, climate, clothing, baggage and special equipment is given in good faith but without responsibility on the part of Norwood. You accept responsibility for obtaining all necessary travel information and documentation required for the challenge. We will send you details on visa along with compulsory inoculations, but you should always seek the advice of your doctor. It is your responsibility to ensure these requirements are in place prior to departure and we accept no liability if you are denied entry to any country, port or airport detailed on the itinerary.

13. Standard and quality of accommodation and services

You should not have unreasonable expectations of the facilities that will be provided which in some remote areas and destinations may be below what you expect at home. Wherever possible, rooms will be shared with someone of your choice. Numbers per room will vary subject to size, location and availability.

14. Acceptance of risk and release

(a) You should be aware that this is a challenge. In addition to the usual dangers and risks, some of which may include physical exertion for which you may not be prepared, you may also experience weather extremes and remoteness from normal medical services. You acknowledge that the enjoyment and excitement of participating in a challenge is derived from this inherent risk in travelling and undertaking activities outside of normal safety levels at home. You agree to observe all instructions and rules issued by Norwood, its agents and suppliers whether before, during or after the challenge. The challenge leader may at any time during the course of the challenge terminate your participation if they consider it necessary for the health and safety of either you or the group.

(b) You agree that Norwood, its Trustees, directors, officers , employees and agents ("Released Parties") are hereby released and forever discharged from any and all liabilities (of any kind or nature whatsoever, whether in law or equity, direct or indirect, joint or several, foreseen or unforeseen, contingent or actual, accrued or unaccrued, liquidated or unliquidated, present or future, known or unknown, disclosed or undisclosed, suspected or unsuspected, however and whenever arising and in whatever capacity and jurisdiction) arising from or out of, or in any way relating to the Challenge. You also agree that you will not bring any legal, arbitral, administrative, regulatory or other action or proceedings against any Released Parties in relation to the Challenge and also agree that if you do take any such proceedings or otherwise assert a claim against the Released Parties damages are not an adequate remedy and, accordingly, that injunctive or other similar relief is appropriate to restrain that breach.

15. Laws

You must comply with the laws and regulations of the country visited.

16. Governing Law and Jurisdiction

These Terms and Conditions and the contract of which they form a part as described in paragraph 1(a) above is and all non-contractual obligations and other matters arising from or connected with it are governed by English law. The courts of England have exclusive jurisdiction to settle any dispute arising from or connected with these Terms and Conditions and the contract of which they form a part as described in paragraph 1(a).

17. Photographs

By taking part in a Norwood challenge, you agree that any photographs taken during the event may be used by Norwood for publicity and marketing purposes.

18. Confidentiality

Norwood will not pass on personal information to any third parties without your consent, unless we are required to do so by law, except as may be required for the purposes of the Challenge.

Accept Terms

Photographs I appear in during the event can be used by Norwood for publicity and marketing purposes.

Privacy and Payment

We would like to keep you updated about our work and other ways you can support Norwood. You can change your communication preferences at any time. I am happy to hear from Norwood by:

Norwood consists of Norwood Ravenswood (charity) and Norwood Schools Limited. We will use your data to process your donation, to claim Gift Aid and to keep in contact with you in the way(s) you have agreed to. We will always store your data securely. We may provide your data to suppliers working on our behalf but we will never share your data with other third parties unless required to do so by the law. For our privacy policy, please click here.