|Even before we started winding upwards
we got an inkling of what
we were in for!
|A strange photo but if you look through
the side window you can just see the road snaking
downwards along the hair pin bends below.
Tizi-n-Tichka pass day over the High Atlas. Hairy especially when local truck drivers drive faster than the speed of light even on hair pin blind bends! Just when you think it isn’t possible to climb any further, the road dips, lulls you into a false sense of security and then climbs again. The scenery changes as you pass, green rock and sediment, rich red soil, flashes of white from the snow and the quartz, little oases with palm trees and fertile strips of crops, traditional terracotta berber mud houses perched precariously on steep hillsides, the ever present hawkers by the sides of the road in the unlikeliest of places, how on earth they think you are going to manage to stop and park safely on these bends I haven’t a clue. Once over the top, the scenery becomes much more lush and green, forested hillsides and even redder fertile soil. Gradually this gives way to urban sprawl, the traffic increases and you realize you are heading for a very large city.
|Pastures green and red on the other side|
We had a briefing at the campsite as dusk was falling and Steve brought out 7 litres of goodness knows what. We were told to bring a notebook and pen and a glass. After telling us first how to get out of the country and which paperwork to hand to whom, he then went on to explain the activities for the next couple of days. Basically there is a mini bus service into Marrakech which we could arrange with the driver. Various tours were offered but after the whistle stop tour of Fes when we went at such a speed it was impossible to look at anything, no one signed up for it. We then partook of the “Hooch”. It was quite vile to be honest, a local brew he had picked up in a village on the pass. It looked like red wine but certainly didn’t taste like it. But after a few sips, we were all quite merry and it turned into an amusing evening. We were to have a formal end of tour meal together in Marrakech the next night.
|Looking down on the square of Djemma – el- Fna
from our rooftop restaurant.