Morocco - Atlas Mountain Bike Traverse
Morocco, Bike - Fat Tyre, 14 days - from £995 (land only) - from €1,195 (land only) - from $1,645 (land only)
Day 1: Rendezvous at the group hotel in Marrakech. Airport transfers are provided. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal.
Day 2: After breakfast, we assemble our bikes and go for a short ride. Then, after lunch, we spend the afternoon sightseeing around the Djemma el-Fna and the souks, with an English-speaking guide. We have a second night at our Marrakech hotel.
Day 3: We have a long and interesting drive along the length of the Atlas Mountains to Imilchil at the north-eastern end of the high part of the range. Overnight either in, or close to, Imilchil in a gite.
Day 4: We set off biking, mostly on piste (unsurfaced jeep roads), gaining height steadily to the Tizi n'Tislet and then make a big descent into a narrow and rocky gorge. Beyond Tasraft, we climb again, before dropping down to our gite in the village of Anergui. Ride distance 72 km (45 miles) with 1200 metres of ascent and 1600 metres of descent.
Day 5: A second day of piste riding, passing through fantastic gorges and close to awesome rock formations (including the 'Cathedral') on a long descent beside the Melloul River. Then, a long climb and more varied riding to our gite at Zawyat Ahancal. Ride distance 85 km (53 miles) with 1666 metres of ascent and 1614 metres of descent.
Day 6: A long day, with a big climb to start, as we negotiate the Tizi n'Lissi and then the Tizi n'Tirghist (2629m) and drop down into the lovely Bougmez Valley. After lunch in Ifrane, we ride more easily through fields and villages to our gite in Abachkou. Ride distance 89 km (55 miles) with 2000 metres of ascent and 1930 metres of descent.
Day 7: A long and tough climb (mule-assisted) across the Tizi n'Rouguelt (2860m). Then, we follow superb singletrack down into the valley of the Tessaout River, with frequent technical sections. Overnight in a gite beyond Ichbbakene. Hike and ride distance 36 km (22 miles) with 1520 metres of ascent and 1240 metres of descent.
Day 8: A relatively easy day, descending beside the Tessaout River to Toufghine and then climbing on a tarmac road to cross the Tizi n'Fedghat (2182m). At the pass, we divert onto small paths and drop down to reach our Berber homestay in Tamzrit. Ride distance 24 km (15 miles) with 600 metres of ascent and 400 metres of descent.
Day 9: After a second mule-assisted ascent, this time to the Tizi n'Tamadla (2690m), we descend across rocky terrain to a lunch stop at Lake Tamadla. Then, we enjoy excellent, technical singletrack and a bit more pushing and carrying to reach the gite at Tighza. Hike and ride distance 20 km (12 miles) with 850 metres of ascent and 750 metres of descent.
Day 10: We ride via the market town of Telouat on a good road to the Tizi n'Tichka (2260m). Then it's a long singletrack descent to Azgour where we stay in a gite or camp. Hike and ride distance 65 km (42 miles) with 1300 metres of ascent and 1900 metres of descent.
Day 11: Biking down the piste road, we reach tarmac and continue easily down to the main Marrakech road. From here, we have a section on the highway, turn into the Ourika Valley and make the long climb to the ski station at Oukaimeden (2600m). Overnight in the CAF refuge. Ride distance 85 km (53 miles) with 1500 metres of ascent and 400 metres of descent.
Day 12: First we cross the Tizi n'Eddi (2928m), the highest point of the trip and descend to Tacheddirt and then Ouaneskra. Then, an easy ascent to the Tizi n'Tamatert (2279m) and a fast piste road descent to our gite at Ait Souka. Ride distance 45 km (28 miles) with 700 metres of ascent and 1460 metres of descent.
Day 13: Today we'll ride to Marrakech, either on the road or with an off-road element via the Tizi n'Tamatert (again) and the Imsker Valley. Reaching our hotel in Marrakech, we can celebrate the end of our Atlas mountains epic ride. Ride distance (with off-road detour) 75 km (47 miles) with 600 metres of ascent and 2010 metres of descent.
Day 14: KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Transfers to Marrakech Airport are provided.
This holiday involves going to moderately high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 2500 metres. Most people will have no difficulty with this level of altitude but before coming on the holiday, we recommend you read the advice on trekking at altitude.