Looking to climb Toubkal 2nd May bank holiday. I know there are plenty of threads on Toubkal already but none seem to have what I am looking for. Just wondering if anyone knows of any good, cheapish 3-4 day treks with guides? I am a novice trekker, have only done Ben Nevis and Kilimanjaro.
I've seen a couple of places offering 8 day treks for £600+!!! I read somewhere else that I only need to budget US$40 a day so this seems exorbitant and 8 days for a mountain that is a lot lower than Kili seems ridiculous (we did Kili in 6 days).
Any thoughts / suggestions would be appreciated. As I said, I am a novice, so wouldn't be comfortable going up myself (ie without a guide, muleteer) - wish I had the confidence to do that, would make things a lot easier! anyhoo, any advice would be appreciated
Happy New Year everyone!
Hi Sul Bee,
You may only need the guide for 2, 3 or 4 days depending on conditions and how fit you are.
You will realistically only need a guide/muleteer (depending on what yuo want to carry yourself) for walking from Imlil to Toubkal and back. It can be done with little stress in 2 days. Day 1 from Imlil up to Neltner and day two, summit early, (set off at 0600) and walk back down to Imlil in the second day. If you do this I wouldn't try getting back to Marrakech that day as it will be late and driving after night (by you or others) is inadvisable unless it is life or death. Stay another night in Imlil and have a tagine and a bottle of the local wine by a roaring fire.
If I were you I'd spend a couple of days at Imlil before going for Toubkal to acclimatise as Imlil is already at 1,700m. there are day hikes you can do from there just following dirt tracks out of the village.
During the aclimatisation period you can ask about for guides/muleteers and get an idea of prices. If you walk up and take the first guy you ask you may pay over the odds. Ask several people including those you see coming back from Toubkal and you'll get an idea of what is reasonable.
hey atlaslion... thanks for that... great advice! Any advice on how much I need to carry? my pack for Kili was 15kg... my waterproofs, water and snacks alone were about 5kg in my daypack... then sleeping bag etc etc... all adds up... hence why I think I should get a muleteer...
I've never done that walk with more than a day sack myself. It is a reasonably hard day from Imlil to Neltner depending on your fitness and motivation. There IS some French guy who's run from Imlil to the summit and back, twice in a day.... I've walked it, once in a day, in snow but that was, ahem, several years ago now.
May can be glorious weather by day (or not) but it will be cold at night at Neltner, not likely to be freezing though.
You can hire a muleteer/giude who can carry your big pack and put a tent up for you if you don't want to sleep in the refuge or if you can't get in which in late May is a stron possibility, often therefuge is full and there are tents dotted along the trailside when you get there. Again, if you don't have a tent you can hire one.
If you can hire a muleteer, do so, you'll enjoy the walk that much more, it is beautiful at any time of year and there are some great views. Just remember to get out of the way of mules, those coming down hill particularly, the brakes aren't very good.
Rachid does a lot of work for KE Adventure, but also runs trips himself. He's an excellent guide, speaks perfect English, and will really look after you. I did Toubkal on a KE trip in November '09, and he happened to be the guide.
I think a guide is a real bonus on Toubkal- you'll learn so much more about the place, and experience it much more fully than if you go it alone.
Try - www.toubkalmountainguides.com
Only company that uses 'Western' only guides.
If you want to do an independent trek, there is a 'Local' guide hiring service in Imlil, beside main drop off point for Taxis. Carpark between Alpine Club Refuge and Cafe Soleil.
Try and spend a few days at @ 2000m before going higher, or you could suffer from AMS, it's pretty hard to go from Marrakesh, (@460m), to 4167m in 2 days, without suffering the effects of altitude. I know I did!! Never felt so bad in my life!! Had to use Diomox and Dextra. to get back down again!!!
Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snake bite..... and furthermore always carry a small snake. W.C.FIELDS.
Walk, climb, camp. Just get out there
guys thank you so much for your advice!!! have no idea why these sites didn't come up in my searches but they are absolutely perfect! excited now!
huskyman - LOL... Diamox is my new best friend after Kili!!!
If you need to hire gear at last moment there is a shop at top of Imlil, just before you leave village to 'trail heads', (or there was when I was there in April '09)
The Cafe Soleil does excellent Tangines, at a reasonable price. Manager's called Abdul and waiters called Mohammad.
Hope you have a good time, been told their's a lot of snow down to @ 2500m, but not as bad as last year!!
I've recently come back from Toubkal (with Exodus) and can confirm that the snowline is currently below the refuge at around 3000m.
I have no idea of guide costs however I can strongly recommend the guide who lead our trip. His name is Mohamed and has a good command of english and a sharp sense of humour, contactable on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a good time out there, it's worth it.
Hamid Idbelaid & Atlas mountain tours nailed it for us. We were two women and two 10 yr old children. We went on a three day 2 night trek. Next time we would do 3 nights 4 days (as they actually recommended). The guide was brahim, the cook was Hamid and the muleteer Brahmin (sorry guys if I've spelt your names wrong). They made the experience from start to finish; they were professional, informative and totally committed to making our time work. This meant brilliant food, great local knowledge and insights, humour, patience. They were fantastic with the kids, funny and kind. It was tough the first day as unusually for the time of year it hailed, rained and snowed for the first day. We were walking for many hours (our choice) and it could have been pretty grim but they kept our spirits and speed up and we made it to the gite. They organised huge numbers of blankets, cooked great food and were flexible about the plans for the next days. The mountains were beautiful, the villages were fascinatinmg, the people were very friendly, but what made the trek were Brahim, Hamid. I would totally recommend them and this amazing area at: http://www.toubkal-atlas.about.ma/
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