RUN MOROCCO: ATLAS MOUNTAINS FAQS

Why Morocco?
Morocco is a paradise for runners who want to discover off-the-beaten track experiences and take in jaw-dropping scenery at the same time. Snow-capped mountains, terraced hillsides, dramatic rock formations, stunningly green river valleys and challenging, rewarding single track trails and quiet dirt roads winding through it all. The culture is exotic and the hospitality overwhelming, the food is fresh, local, organic and always delicious. Life moves slowly in Morocco: you will see, learn and experience more than you ever imagined, and come away with memories and friendships that will last a lifetime.

What’s included in the trip cost?
The trip price includes pre-trip communication & guidance, airport transfers, all accommodation, all meals, coffee/tea/juice with breakfasts, drinking water, transportation, an expert Moroccan logistics team, experienced Rogue Expeditions run guides & trip leaders, organized, supported runs and a Rogue Expeditions shirt & buff. In short, just about everything is covered from the moment you land until the moment you leave!

What isn’t included in the trip cost?
The cost does not include flight, alcohol, tips or personal purchases (and trust us, you will find things to buy in Morocco!)

Why isn’t the flight included?
International airfare is not included in the price. Let’s be honest, we are all unique and your schedules (and originating airport!) are no exception.   Come early, stay late.  Fly, sail, or overland by camel. Participants will be responsible for booking their travel arrangements and ensuring that they arrive in Marrakech Morocco (either at the airport or hotel) by the trip start date and depart no earlier than 12 noon on the final day. Suggestions and guidance will be provided once you are signed up.

How far/fast do I have to be able to run?
Max daily distances are listed on the itinerary, but there is no obligation to go that full distance; each run is flexible, and you’re always welcome to take a day off if needed. All paces are welcome - we have years of experience in setting up logistics so that everyone can enjoy each run at their own pace. It’s worth noting that nearly everyone sends us an email at some point warning us that they’re “slow”… in reality, the vast majority of people have pretty similar abilities!

What sort of terrain will we be running on?
The terrain will vary, but the footing will largely be dirt road and technical single track trail. There will be some runs done in the mountains (expect hills, rocks and altitude!), and others along very runnable dirt roads. It’s okay if you are new to trail running or mountain running (we get tons of road runners!), but for the best experience we do encourage everyone to spend some time getting familiar with uneven terrain and working on their hill skills in advance.

What time of day will be be running?
Every run on this trip is planned for a mid-morning start; generally you’ll have breakfast, then a bit of travel to get to our run location. Lunches will be prepared by our team and waiting at the finish line. We’ll always ensure that pre-run bathroom stops are made in the nearest town. Of course, schedules sometimes flex due to weather or other logistical considerations - the rule is to relax and enjoy yourself out there!

What will we do when we aren’t running?
This is a travel experience as much as a running adventure, and we aim to give everyone an immersive experience. You’ll have the chances to explore souks (markets), learn about argan oil production & traditional rug weaving, wander through and learn about intricate gardens and orchards and of course spend time chatting with our Moroccan partners and learning about local life from those who know best. Meals are an experience in and of themselves, and we’ll have plenty of quality relaxation time on the terrace or around the pool at our hotels.

Can my non-runner spouse/friend come too?
The answer is nearly always yes! They will still get to enjoy plenty of sightseeing, cultural immersion and relaxation, though it’s important to note that this is a running trip and the overall itinerary is first and foremost built around that activity. They are also welcome and encouraged to walk or hike during the run portions of the day. If you have a non-runner interested in joining, get in touch and we can make sure that the trip is a good fit.

What will the hotels be like?
Rogue Expeditions supports locally owned and operated guesthouses whenever possible. Each night will be spent in 3-star and 4-star guesthouses, riads (traditional courtyard homes) and restored kasbahs. You can expect clean rooms, comfortable beds, private bathrooms with hot showers*, gorgeous Moroccan decor, phenomenal hospitality, rooftop terraces with sweeping views and often a swimming pool.

*Please note that while all hotels offer hot showers, many of them are in small remote villages where resources - both water and heater capacity - are limited. We encourage everyone to be mindful of this and keep their showers short so that everyone can enjoy hot water!

What is the weather like?
Usually perfect! In the mountains, expect clear nights with low temperatures between 30-40F / 0-5C and bright, sunny days with high temperatures between 60-70F / 15-22C and little to no humidity. Rain is rare, but always a possibility in the mountains.

Can I have my own room at hotels?
Sure! There is an option for “Private Room Upgrade” during the signup process. If you are traveling solo and do not choose the upgrade, you will be paired with a same sex roommate. Please note that single room availability is limited and is first-come, first-serve.

What sort of food will we be eating?
We will eat healthy, fresh, traditional Moroccan meals throughout the trip. A typical breakfast will include a spread of just-baked, clay-oven bread, pastries, local fruit jam, butter, cheese, eggs, fruit, coffee, mint tea and (literally) fresh-squeezed OJ. Lunches will typically be pre- and post-run spreads of fresh fruit, nuts, dates, olives bread, veggies and rotisserie meat. Dinners feature tajine – chicken, beef or lamb simmered in a clay vessel with an assortment of vegetables and spices –  and couscous dishes along with fresh bread, olives, light soup and fresh fruit. You won’t go hungry! Most special diets can be accommodated.

What sort of vehicles will we be traveling in?
We will be traveling in well-maintained 4×4 vehicles.

Is it safe?
Very.  Morocco is an extremely welcoming and friendly place, and one of the most relaxed and accepting Islamic countries in the world. As long as you exercise the same common sense you’d use anywhere (ie don’t flash lots of cash or expensive items in tourist areas), you’ll be fine. Hospitality is king in Morocco; our local team has worked with us for many years and they take the utmost care of our runners belongings and well-being.

What should I pack?
Packing light will make everything easier for you, but there are some key things to bring along, A few sets of running clothes (it’s so dry that you will sweat very little), running shoes, a few sets of non-running clothes, flipflops, one warm jacket, a pair of gloves, sunglasses, sunblock, reading material and a CAMERA are all recommended. A handheld water bottle or hydration pack is required. A detailed packing list will be provided.

What should I wear?
While there are no actual rules surrounding clothing in Morocco, we do encourage cultural respect, especially in villages and rural areas (where we spend most of our time). For women, shorts while running aren't a big deal although capri-length bottoms are best; you’ll never see a Moroccan woman (or many men, for that matter) showing knees. When not running, we recommend sticking to pants or long skirts; short sleeves are totally fine but please avoid tank tops. Guys, please run with a shirt on. It's unlikely that anyone would say anything to you about your clothes in any situation but, again, it’s about being respectful travelers!

Is alcohol allowed?
Yes, alcohol is allowed. Though most Moroccans do not drink alcohol and it can be difficult to find outside of the cities, it is by no means a banned substance and it is plenty acceptable for foreigners to enjoy adult beverages. You will have the opportunity to ‘stock up’ before we depart Marrakech – the supermarkets have a great selection of liquor, beer and wine.

What are the tipping customs?
We will provide country-specific guidance and take a group collection when it comes to the local team (ie drivers, cooks, etc) involved with your trip, while tips for Rogue Expeditions trip leaders are at your discretion – never expected, but always appreciated.

If I change my mind or something comes up, can I cancel?
We know that life happens, and on occasion a participant will have to back out of a trip. As most of our costs are paid well in advance, we have set a cancellation policy that applies to all trips. Travel insurance is highly recommended to cover potential cancellations on your part.

If you cancel:

  • Within 30 days of signup: Full refund

  • 90+ days from the trip start date (but after the 30 day grace period): Deposits are non-refundable

  • 61-90 days from the trip start date: 50% of total payment refunded**

  • 60 days or less from the trip start date: No refunds

**This only applies to participants who have paid their balances on time. If you do not pay the balance by the due date and cancel after the fact, your deposit is non-refundable.

Can I switch to another trip?
If you wish to transfer your deposit from one trip to another you must notify us at least 90 days prior to your original departure date.  A fee of $150 per person will apply and will be deducted from your original deposit.  If you notify us less than 90 days prior to the proposed departure date the refund policy applicable to cancellations will apply. Deposit transfers may only be made once, and must be made to another trip departing within 12 months of your original departure date.

How do I sign up?
A $600 deposit reserves your spot, and balances are due 3 months prior to the trip start date. Around that same time we will give you access to a participant online “basecamp” where you can find the packing list, full info packet, guide bios, a place to submit flight details & more. Spots are first come-first serve, so don’t wait!

All questions can be sent to allison@roguexpeditions.com

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