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Snow and Sand, Morocco
Snow and Sand 20192017-11-30T19:15:06+00:00

Project Description

Morocco, Snow and Sand

Morocco Snow and Sand
Charity Trek

12 – 22 Sep 2019

Morocco, Snow and Sand

Morocco Snow and Sand
Charity Trek

12 – 22 Sep 2019

Morocco; a land of amazing contrast. Trek to the highest and coldest point in North Africa (Jbel Toubkal, 4167m) and then to one of the lowest and hottest; the vast Sahara Desert.

  • A true contrast of Snow and Sand.
  • A unique trek offering the two extreme environments Morocco has to offer in one go.
  • Sub zero temperatures on Toubkal, and then…
  • Walk barefoot amongst the huge dunes of the vast (and hot) Sahara Desert.

This is something different; something unusual and a great way to see Morocco. Good for all abilities with full mule and camel support if required.

Full details below.

Fundraising and Itinerary

Self Fund

Trip Cost £1300

Deposit – £250 on booking
PLUS
Interim payment – £250
7-8 months prior to departure

PLUS
Final balance of £800 60 days prior to departure

Fundraise as much as you can; there is no time limit

Flexi Fund

Trip Cost £1300

Deposit – £250 on booking
PLUS
Interim self payment – £250
7-8 months prior to departure

PLUS
Fundraise £1600 in sponsorship

Fundraising to be completed 10 weeks prior to departure

Minimum Spronsorship

Trip Cost £1300

Deposit – £250 on booking
PLUS
Fundraise £2100 in sponsorship
(Min of £1050 goes to the charity)

Interim payment paid by the charity*

Fundraising to be completed 10 weeks prior to departure

* The interim payment is made by the charity and is reliant on the fundraiser having sufficient funds in their fundraising account. The target dates for this (and the amounts required) will be shown on the Pledge form.

Fundraising Options Explained

Under this option, you pay the entire cost of your trip yourself, directly to us.
You then raise as much sponsorship as you can for your chosen charity. There is no pressure of a time or financial target.
The balance payment for your trip is due 60 days prior to your departure.

You pay us the deposit PLUS a 2nd personal contribution (some months later), which reduces the fundraising target.
You then commit to raising a minimum amount of sponsorship for your chosen charity. From that the remaining balance for your trip will be paid.
You will be asked to complete a Pledge Form with the charity. It sets out the target dates and any guidelines required; this is a requirement of your booking.
Your fundraising target must be met, and paid to the charity, a min of 10 weeks prior to your departure date. This enables them to pay the remaining balance for your trip with no financial risk to themselves.

You pay your deposit and then commit to raising a minimum amount of sponsorship for your chosen charity. From that sponsorship, the remaining balance for your trip will be paid.

The completion of a Pledge Form is required. It sets out the target dates and any guidelines required; this is a requirement of your booking.

Your chosen charity will support your fundraising throughout and all sponsorship money you raise must be paid to them upon receipt. Generally, the sponsorship target is set to ensure that a minimum of 50% of the money you raise is retained by the charity. All money raised above the target will also be retained by the charity. Your fundraising target must be met, and paid to the charity, a min of 10 weeks prior to your departure date. This enables them to pay the remaining balance for your trip with no financial risk to themselves.

Day 1. Depart UK, fly to Marrakech
Fly from London on a direct flight to Marrakech. On arrival in Marrakech, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel/Riad. Once you have settled in, you will want to experience one of Morocco’s icons; the famous Djemaa el Fna square. Your first experience of the square is one of a senses explosion; entertainers performing, a myriad of food stalls all lit up with the smells to accompany them, and the general melee of activity.

Day 2. Drive Marrakesh to Imlil, trek to Neltner
After breakfast, you will depart and drive into the High Atlas mountains to the town of Imlil (90 mins). Once you have met your trek crew, complete with mules, you will be on your way. It will take between 5 and 6 hrs to reach the Refuge; a steady climb throughout the day. Get lots of rest for tomorrows big day. BLD

Day 3. Toubkal (4167m, summit day), Trek out to Lac Ifni
A pre-dawn start for the ascent of Mt Toubkal (4167m). The terrain varies and can be steep in places. You will also highly likely cross patches of snow, which tends to lie throughout the year. There is also some scree, trekking poles can be useful here. It’ll take about 4 hrs to reach the summit and some may experience some discomfort as the altitude increases (it will subside quickly once you descend). If you experience some difficulties, speak to your Guide. There are some great views from the infamous triangle that marks the summit. The descent is by the same route, have a rest before descending further to Lac D’Ifni. A long day – approx 12 hrs. Overnight camp. BLD

Day 4. Meet Transport, drive to Desert, Short trek
An early start to have breakfast and a short trek to meet the transport. Say goodbye to your mountain crew (the Guide stays with you all of the time). It takes approx 6 hrs to drive down to the Desert, through Ouarzazate and Zagora. It’s a beautiful drive through the Draa Valley; lunch en route. If you wish, we can safely store some of your clothing/equipment in Ouarzazate that you don’t need in the Desert. Your start point is M’Hamid, where you will meet your Desert trek crew (including camels) and head out into the sand for a short trek to the first night’s camp near Nsrat. BLD

Days 5/6/7/8. Desert trek
For the next 4 full days, you will enjoy some fantastic and remote trekking in the vast Sahara; very different from the mountain terrain of just a day or so ago!
The dunes will be low level to begin with, mixed with the hard baked ‘hamada’ underfoot. This whole area is based on the Draa river.
There are no formal campsites, it literally is open desert. Your first night’s camp will be in an area known as Tidi.
The 2nd full day is a big one as you head out into the high and impressive chain of dunes known as Erg Chigaga. These dunes can reach 1500’ upwards and you will camp in amongst them. In the distance is a mountain ridge that marks the border with Algeria.
Your final full day will leave the bigger dunes behind as you head towards Ras ‘n Akhl.
By now, you will be well and truly used to living a very spartan and simple life. There are no radios, no TV, no newspapers, just silence and a sea of sand. BLD

Day 9. Short trek, Transfer to Ouarzazate
Your final 1-2hr trek will take you to the finish near M’Hamid to meet your transport. Say a fond farewell to your trek crew before the 5 hr road journey back to Ouarzazate.
It’s time for a well earned shower and change of clothes! BLD

Day 10. Transfer to Marrakech
A 5 – 6 hr road transfer back to Marrakech, over the High Atlas mountains.
Morocco’s diverse landscape is a film makers paradise and just after you leave Ouarzazate, there is a visit to Ait Ben Haddou, the place where a lot of the ‘Gladiator’ and ‘Game of Thrones’ was filmed.
Check into the hotel; the remainder of the day is free. B

Day 11. Depart for London, B
At the appropriate time, you will be transferred back to the airport for your return flight home.

Note – B: Breakfast L: Lunch D: Dinner

What the Price Includes

  • International flights and airport transfers in Morocco (flight inclusive)
  • An experienced and qualified English speaking local guide
  • All land transfers involved in the itinerary
  • Accommodation as described in the itinerary
  • All meals on trek and B&B in hotels
  • Local porter assistance on trek (mules and camels as appropriate)
  • All necessary trek and National Park access permits

What the Price Does Not Include

  • Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Lunch & evening meals in Marrakech and en route to the desert (itinerary shows full meal plan)
  • Optional trips and sightseeing tours
  • Guide and Crew gratuities
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Challenge Information

>  Trip length – 11 days UK – UK.
>  Trek length – 8 days.
>  Biggest risk factor – the weather (hot sun and cold temperatures) plus trip hazard on rock on Toubkal.
>  All meals on trek (drinking water supplied in the Sahara), b’fasts in hotels.
>  Hotel accommodation in Marrakech and Ouarzazate, tents on trek.

Passport – Must be valid for the duration of your visit. Information source is the FCO Travel Advice Morocco.

Visa – No visa is required. You need to complete an immigration form on arrival.

Flight Tickets – Most airlines work on e-tickets now (the flight reference No (we supply) and your surname). There are no paper tickets. In the majority of cases, we check you in and supply your Boarding Passes by email. If you are required to check in yourself, we will inform you of the process.

Travel Insurance – Mandatory on our trips. We will ask for proof of cover. We do not sell travel insurance. Go to our Information webpage for our unbias advice and tips.

Min group size 2.

Once this number is reached, the trip is guaranteed to depart; the trip will not be cancelled.

You will be walking between 5 – 7 hours per day, occasionally longer if required. Overall distance in the desert can vary between 60 – 100km depending on the group.

Our challenge falls just as the summer temperatures start to drop in the desert and just before the winter snows fall heavily in the mountains; a small window of opportunity which make this challenge a rare opportunity for those looking for something a little different.

Temperatures can easily hit 40°C mid afternoon in the Sahara and well below 0°C on the summit of Toubkal. There is also an altitude difference of well over 12,000 feet so the environment change is a real challenge.

The walking surfaces vary between hard baked river bed (wadi), hamada (light sand with pebbles) and very deep soft sand to rock and scree on the mountain. As a result, it can take its toll on your feet. This trek would be considered challenging.

We recommend a good level of fitness and adopt a regular training regime well before you depart.

After booking, you will be asked to complete an Emergency Details Form which will include your medical history. If we have any doubts about your ability to take part in the challenge, we may ask you to provide a letter of fitness from your GP, therefore we would recommend that if you have any concerns, you speak to your GP prior to booking.

In the UK, if you can walk for 5 – 6 hrs per day, on consecutive days, over undulating terrain (with normal rest stops), carrying a daysack weighing approx 6kg, then you should be perfectly capable of completing this trek.

Fitness Concerns? – Call us on 01529 488159 or 07725 943108

Food

  • B’fast is supplied in hotels, full board on trek including drinking water.
  • Breakfasts will consist of a variable buffet spread: cereals (including porridge), bread with various spreads (jam, nutella, etc..), cream cheeses, omelettes, hot drinks.
  • Lunches are prepared freshly by the camp chef and can be soups, bread, salads of varying type and fruit. Hot drinks.
  • Tea/coffee and biscuits served on arrival into camp each day.
  • Evening meals consists of 3 courses: soup, main course and desert.
    Starter – various soup with bread.
    Main course – traditional tagines of chicken, lots of vegetables, rices, lentils, pasta and similar hearty dishes. Catering for vegetarians presents no issues.
    Deserts – normally tinned fruit.
    Hot drinks.

Accommodation

  • Hotels, Marrakech and Ouarzazate – twin share, same sex basis.
  • On trek – tents, twin share basis, same sex.
  • Declared couples (ie married) will be paired together.
  • If there is an odd number, someone gets lucky with sole occupation at no additional cost.
  • Sole occupation cost – £120. This includes the 4 x hotel nights + a tent to yourself on trek.

Our default flights are London Gatwick (LGW) – Marrakech (RAK) but we may use other airports. We use direct flights if at all possible.

Included luggage allowance in the aircraft hold is a min of 20kg.

London not convenient?

Other regional non London airport options are possible. We appreciate the potential inconvenience of London if you live far away. Whilst using regional airports may attract supplements due to higher flight costs, that cost may be offset by the cost and time of travelling to London. Flights from regional airports are highly likely to be indirect (ie involve at least 1 stop). Please ask for advice.

China Great Wall, international flights

The advice here is given in good faith from trusted sources; we are not medical professionals. Check with your Medical Practice if you are up to date with the primary courses.

Vaccinations for Morocco:

  • Usually advised for Nepal: Hepatitis A; Tetanus; Typhoid.
  • Consider: Hepatitis B; Rabies.
  • Yellow Fever – No Yellow Fever certificate is required for Morocco.
  • Information source – http://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/destinations/africa/morocco.aspx
  • Malaria – Malaria not normally present unless the illness was contracted abroad.

FREE Vaccinations – the following are usually FREE on the NHS as they are considered the greatest risk if brought into the country:
Cholera, Diphtheria, Polio, Tetanus and Hep A (be aware some of those are combined vaccinations).
Information source – http://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/1071.aspx?CategoryID=67

The others you are likely to have to pay for.

INCLUDED – All taxes and fuel supplements associated with international and domestic flights.

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