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MGOUN TREK 4 - IGHIL MGOUN ASCENT AND GORGES - 11 DAYS

Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4
Mgoun Trek 4k

Take on the challenge of climbing to the summit of the second highest massif in North Africa and then embrace the excitement of a remote trek through one of the most spectacular gorges in all Morocco, emerging into the Valley of the Roses.

At 4,068m, Ighil Mgoun is the second highest massif in North Africa. This hike to the very summit, Ighil n’Oumsoud, is challenging, but it requires no mountaineering expertise and the reward of panoramic views makes all the hard work worthwhile. A descent through the Gorge of Achabou then offers the experience of perhaps the most exhilarating of all possible routes across the High Atlas Mountains.

 

Itinerary (brief)

Day 1: Arrive in Marrakech
Day 2: Transfer to Aït Bou Guemez Valley
Day 3: Walk from Aït Bou Guemez Valley to Azib n’Ikkis
Day 4: Walk from Azib n’Ikkis to Tarkeddid Plateau
Day 5: Ascent of Ighil n’Oumsoud (the summit of Ighil Mgoun) and descent to Oulilimt Valley
Day 6: Walk from Oulilimt Valley to Tighremt n’Aït Ahmed
Day 7: Walk from Tighremt n’Aït Ahmed to Imi n’Irkt
Day 8: Walk from Imi n’Irkt to Aguerzaka
Day 9: Walk from Aguerzaka to Boutaghrar and transfer through the Valley of the Roses
Day 10: Transfer from the Valley of the Roses to Marrakech
Day 11: Depart from Marrakech

Why book this trek?

• Reach the summit of Ighil Mgoun, the second highest massif in North Africa
• Explore one of the most dramatic gorges in all Morocco

Itinerary (detailed)

Day 1: Arrive in Marrakech and enjoy a free day. Spend the night in a local riad.

Day 2: Transfer from Marrakech to the bountiful Aït Bou Guemez Valley (1850m), known to the French as the “Happy Valley”. Spend the night in a local gite. 4 to 5 hours transfer, approximately.

Day 3: We begin our trek by leaving behind the Aït Bou Guemez Valley, climbing gently through the narrow Arous Valley, and passing through the village of Aït Sayd, to reach the pastures of Azib n’Ikkis (2200m). Lovely views of Ighil Mgoun already lie ahead. We either camp on the pastures or spend the night in a local gite, depending on the season. 4 hours walking, approximately.

Day 4: We climb steeply to cross two passes in quick succession, Tizi n’Oumskiyq (2909m) and Aghouri Est (3400m), both of which offer wonderful, far-reaching views, before descending to the vast expanse of the Tarkeddid Plateau (2900m). We spend the night in the refuge. 5 hours walking, approximately.

Day 5: Today we ascend Ighil n’Oumsoud (4068m), the summit of Ighil Mgoun, making an early, pre-dawn departure from the refuge. The climb itself is demanding but the views all around and towards the Sahara are quite amazing and absolutely worth the effort. We descend into the broad Oulilimt Valley where we camp for the night close to a water source (2650m). 8 hours walking, approximately.

Day 6: We follow the Oulilimt Valley, alternately climbing its banks to gain wonderful views and dropping to walk along the riverbed, until we reach the isolated ruin of Tighremt n’Aït Ahmed (2235m). We camp beside this ancient monument on the banks of the river. 5 hours walking, approximately.

Day 7: We follow the course of the Oulilmt River further as it leads into the Assif Mgoun Valley, winding our way along its banks through a succession of beautiful, traditional villages. Finally, we reach the last of these, Imi n’Irkt (2100m), at the very mouth of the gorge. We camp at the edge of the village. 4.5 hours walking, approximately.

Day 8: We leave Imi n’Irkt by wading through the Assif Mgoun to its far bank. We then spend much of the day fording the stream, following its quickening course right through the stunning gorges of Achabou before finally emerging at the small village of Aguerzaka (1820m). We spend the night in a local gite. 6 hours walking, approximately.

Day 9: We follow the valley onwards from Aguerzaka. Although the valley begins to widen, there is still little sign of a path and the river itself largely remains our guide. We emerge at Boutaghrar (1500m). If we have time and energy, we can explore the narrow lanes of this historic village and admire the architecture and craftsmanship of its numerous ancient tighremts. We transfer from Boutaghrar, travelling along the piste that runs onwards all along the banks of the Assif Mgoun through the Valley of the Roses to the point where the river finally empties into the greater Dades Valley (1420m). We spend an evening relaxing, eating and drinking on the terrace of a small, Berber hotel, enjoying stunning views over the two valleys: on the one side are the High Atlas Mountains and on the other Jebel Sahro. 6 hours walking and one hour transfer, approximately.

Day 10: After a leisurely breakfast, we transfer back to Marrakech, passing first through El Kelaa des Mgouna, justly famous for its rosewater products, before pausing for lunch in Ouarzazate, poetically renowned as “the gateway to the desert”. We then cross over the High Atlas Mountains via Morocco’s most dramatic of mountain road passes, the Tizi n’Tichka (2260m). You spend your final night in a riad. 6 hours transfer, approximately.

Day 11: Depart from Marrakech.

Itinerary notes:

On occasion local weather conditions may require the trekking route to be altered in the interests of your safety.

If this itinerary is not exactly what you had in mind, please do contact us for a discussion as all itineraries can be adapted according to your wishes.