Jbel Toubkal Reviews
Jbel Toubkal summit Jun 26, 2012
For an rookie like me was quite hard and it was too hot in this time of the year, but is possible without any equipment.
Start your walks as soon as possible.
I spent one day from Imlil to the refuge and the other to the summit and return.
I took the track in the GPS and made it without guide, but the path is more or less marked with piles of stones. The start from the refuge is quite tricky since you have to cross a small river.
You have accommodation the the refuges for 25€ for bed, dinner, breakfast and shower. Take a sleeping bag.
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Jbel Toubkal Jan 26, 2011
Toubkal, the highest peak in North Africa is located about 2 hours away from Marakech in Morocco.
I had booked a trip to Morocco at very short notice, and after doing some research into sights and activities I stumbled upon a wiki page on the mountain. At first I had dismissed it, as I presumed it would be a technical climb.
I had queried it with a few agencies, they all recommended that you have experience climbing with crampons and Ice axes(I had none) last minute, I decided to book it, after all I had climbed Kinabalu in Malaysia, which is similar in size. This is my account of the ascent and descent.
1000am - Left cafe where I met my guide, Toubkal was visible in the distance
1005am - embarrassingly I start to struggle with my breathing - must be the altitude, we started at 1700M
1200am - After a long conversation about Moroccan football with my guide, we stop for a short break, I grab some water and a banana, my guide has a smoke
1300pm - Getting steeper, we stop near a holy place, there is some kind of local shop there. we get some Mint tea, and Mohamed gives me an egg sandwich he had prepared earlier
1400pm- At the snow line now, some parts seem very dangerous, at one point we are walking on black ice without crampons
1500pm - I can see the Refuge where we will spend the night (3200M) They have a few dorm rooms, and a common room with a roaring fire.
The fire was welcomed, the temperature dropped to -10 after dark.
1600-0630 Sat in front of the fire for most of the evening, terrified to leave my spot as the rest of the refuge was so cold.
0700 - Left the Refuge for the final 1000 meters, I'm feeling good and confident about the climb now. My crampons are on, got my Ice axe in my right hand, and I am Gore-texed to the teeth!! Bring it on Mountain!
0715 – It becomes immediately evident that todays climbing is lot different to the previous days, The ascent is a lot steeper, and walking in the snow at such a high altitude is killing me, I continue to doubt myself all the way up the mountain
0900 – Mohamed informs me, that the summit is merely 200 meters more, at this stage I am literally walking 4-5 steps and then stopping to catch my breath, I start to become weak, and I ask my guide if he has any food, he gives me a small cake from his backpack, I nearly choke as I stuff this into my mouth, after I feel a little better, and am ready for the final push, what’s that in the distance? Yes I see it now, the Summit is in my sight.
1000am – After all the doubt that had clouded my mind for the past few days, I finally reach the summit. I’m standing at 4200 meters and at North Africa’s tallest peak.