"Climb Mount Toubkal, the highest peak in Northern Africa and be rewarded with views that coast across the Marrakech plain all the way down to the Sahara.
Mount Toubkal is the second highest peak in Africa and the highest in North Africa. At an altitude of 4,167m and surrounded by towering sister peaks, climbing Toubkal is a fantastically rewarding challenge. Outside the winter months the ascent of Toubkal isn't technical so as long as you are reasonably fit you stand a decent chance of making it to the top. Located just a short distance from Marrakech, Toubkal can be climbed easily on a two day trip from the bustling City.
Day 1: Marrakech- Toubkal Refuge
Drive from Marrakech to Imlil and trek to Toubkal Refuge via Aremd & the Ait Mizane Valley Imlil. Leaving the city behind we drive south, towards the craggy peaks and plunging valleys of the Toubkal Massif. Crossing the Haouz Plain we pass through Berbers Saturday market “Souk” of Asni village, from here where our road begins to climb towards the foothills of the Massif. Below us the valley of the Ghighaia stretches out into the distance and small villages cling to the sides of the steep hills as we meander our way towards the village of Imlil. Here we leave our vehicle, begin our trek, heading along the Mizane Valley, first towards the village of Aremd and then onto the shrine of Sidi Chamarouch. Built on a moraine spur overlooking the valley floor, Aremd is the largest village in the valley and provides an interesting mix of traditional terraced farming, gites and streets that seem to be permanently gridlocked by goats and cattle. Continuing east and crossing the flood plain our route takes us along mule tracks and up into the high rocky cliffs above the valley. Crossing the river we eventually come to the pastoral shrine of Sidi Chamarouch. From here the trail continues to climb steadily, snaking and zigzagging its way up to the snowline and the Toukbal Refuge (3207m), our stop for the night.
Approx 5-6hrs walking
Day 2: Toubkal Refuge – Climb Summit of Jebl Toubkal.
Early morning we start our accent of the summit of Jebel Toukbal, the highest peak in Northern Africa. Our route takes us up the south circle, crossing the stream above the refuge and then heading across one of the mountains numerous scree fields, where we will have to negotiate a seemingly endless carpet of boulders and rocks. The walking is relatively straightforward, but the scree and the altitude will make the going quite difficult in parts, however, the views along the way make the journey more than worthwhile. Cresting the ridgeline we find ourselves on the plateau, from where it is a short walk to the summit and the vistas out across the surrounding landscape are quite breath taking. From here there are 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. Pliny, the great Roman scholar, once described the High Atlas Mountains as "the most fabulous mountains in all of Africa" and from our vantage point high above the valley it is easy to understand why. Retracing our steps we then return down the mountain and head back towards Imlil prior to drive back to Marrakech.
Approx. 9hrs Walking