DAY 1 | ARRIVAL IN MARRAKECH
Arrive in Marrakech, where we will pick you up from the airport and take you to a beautiful riad in the city center. Spend the afternoon experiencing the sensory overload of this ancient city: explore the maze-like medina, test your bargaining skills in the souks and check out the performers & snake charmers of the D’jemma el Fna. Wrap it up with a big welcome dinner and a good night of sleep – you’ve got a big week ahead.
No running / Meals: D
DAY 2 | FOOTHILLS OF THE HIGH ATLAS
Depart from Marrakech by 4×4 vehicles towards the High Atlas mountains. Just an hour out of the city we will have our first run in the foothills of these majestic mountains. Rolling through small villages and lush agriculture land teaming with Spring growth we’ll get a great intro to rural life in Morocco. At our finish line by a babbling river our local crew will have a huge lunch prepared, complete with carpets and tents, and then we will drive over the High Atlas to our riad for the night in a village high in the mountains. Before dinner we will have our first hands-on village task to whet the appetite for the week ahead.
Running: 14 mi / 22 km, pavement, ~500ft/150m gain
DAY 3 | INTO THE HIDDEN VALLEYS
It's time to get off the map! Beginning at a dramatic mountain pass, this run takes us along a gorgeous singletrack trail towards the Zat Valley. Pass through small villages that are only accessible on foot, and cover everything from rocky ridgeline and pristine meadows to canyon descents and river crossings. After a hard final climb (which will include another local task!), meet our crew in a tiny village that will be home for the night. Gear will be brought by mule, dinner will be served by our chef and everyone will be able to gather and relax inside the gite (a basic but cozy travelers shelter) before heading right outside to sleep under the stars in tents.
Running: 18 mi / 30km, single track trail & 4×4 track, ~ 4000ft/1220m gain
DAY 4 | THE WAY OF THE SHEPHERDS
Wake up to a stunning view outside your tent, then set out for a magical run into the Ourika Valley. Get ready for idyllic meadows filled with sheep, waterfalls, dramatic mountain views and no other people save for a few shepherds. After a long technical descent you'll reach the finish and find a village, a river, a bridge and lunch! After lunch a short drive to our riad in nearby valley we will have another locally themed task. Then you can kick back and enjoy a relaxed evening spent at our gorgeous riad with stunning views of the valley.
Running: 13 mi / 21km, single track mule trail, ~1800ft/550m gain
DAY 5 | FOREST OF THE ATLAS
Enjoy a more relaxed morning as we will start our run right from the riad. Totally different sights and sounds today as we climb up into an area of national forest and through a couple of small, seldom visited, traditional villages. Pine trees line almost the whole route as we alternate between flowing double track and technical single track. At the run finish we will picnic at a beautiful lookout point high in the forest and, of course, enjoy another of our cultural challenges! No moving today - enjoy another night at our secluded valley riad complete with huge restorative dinner.
Running: 13 mi / 21km, gravel road/single track mule trail, ~2100ft/700m gain
DAY 6 | OVER THE MOUNTAINS
Our grand finale run today! We will drive 30 minutes high up into the Oukaimeden valley to the start line. Our highest altitude yet today with a maximum of almost 10,000 ft/3000 m at the highest pass (most of the run is lower). This is an epic route combining 3 valleys of the High Atlas. Expect some significant climbs but be rewarded with some breathtaking views. Our goal is our riad in the mountain town of Imlil, a hub for trekking and mountaineering. You’ll have some time in the evening to explore the town and browse for souvenirs before we tackle a big final dinner to celebrate a big week!
Running: 13 mi / 21km, mix of dirt road & single track trail, ~2700ft/900m gain
DAY 7 | DEPARTURES
After breakfast, pack up and head to Marrakech to catch flights home, or continue on your own travels!
Please note - in previous years we offered a Toubkal climb add-on (the highest peak in Morocco, trek starts from Imlil). We can recommend a local operator to take you on this trip but won’t be guiding it ourselves this year.
PRICING & DETAILS
Saturday, March 28 - Friday, April 3, 2020
Participants should arrive in Marrakech no later than 3pm on March 28 and depart Marrakech no earlier than 12pm on April 3.
An ultra-running background is not required, but strong endurance abilities, some trail experience and a sense of adventure is a must! Participants should arrive prepared to cover the full distance each day (and yes, hiking is totally fine). If you’re aren’t sure whether it’s a good fit for you, drop us a line and we’ll discuss!
A $600 deposit secures your spot, and the total cost depends upon signup date:
Standard Pricing (through December 28): $2595
Late Pricing (after December 28): $2695
Balances due by December 28, 2019. Registrations after that date must be paid in full. Please refer to the FAQs on our website for our cancellation & refund policy.
Pre-trip guidance + communication
Transfers to/from Marrakech airport on arrival and departure day
Transportation: 4×4 vehicles, fuel and professional drivers
Five nights in comfortable, unique three and four-star hotels or riads (double occupancy)
One night tent camping in the High Atlas (basic indoor gathering space and toilet are provided along with all gear and bedding)
Gear transfer for High Atlas runs
Organized, guided runs
Organized hands-on cultural tasks and challenges
Experienced Rogue Expeditions trip leaders
Experienced, expert Moroccan logistics team
All meals + snacks from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 7
Rogue Expeditions shirt
COST DOES NOT INCLUDE
Alcohol or beverages other than water (coffee & mint tea are always included with breakfasts)
Personal purchases/souvenirs or extra activities
Early Arrival package: $205 single / $310 double
Arrive a day early for extra time to sleep off the jet lag and explore Marrakech! Includes airport pickup, accommodation, and breakfast the following morning.
Private room upgrade: $400
Gives you your own room for all six nights. One night is tent camping, in which case you will have your own tent. Please note that availability is limited.
There will be a minimum of 8 and a maximum of 14 runners.
Though we don't anticipate any problems hitting the minimum, please do not book flights until we confirm that it has been met.
US citizens will need a passport with at least 6 months of validity upon arrival in Morocco. No visas or vaccinations are required for US or EU citizens in Morocco, though you may want to consider some standard vaccinations if you are a first-time traveler. Participants from other countries should check with their consulate for entry requirements.
Please ensure that you arrive in Marrakech no later than 3pm on March 28 and depart Marrakech no earlier than 12pm on April 3. If you arrive/depart outside of those parameters then you will be responsible for your own airport transfers (we can help you make arrangements but there will be added cost).
Please note that travel insurance is strongly recommended. Although we hope you never need it, we've seen enough to know that it can be a lifesaver in the event of a medical emergency, flight delays that cause you to miss the start of the trip, lost baggage or cancellation on your part (break your leg two weeks before departure? Insurance could cover the entire cost of your trip! Flight delays cause you to miss the first day? Insurance can cover the cost of transport to meet up with the group!).
You can find those here.
Allison Macsas at firstname.lastname@example.org