On Tuesday November 19th, I'll be flying off Vancouver Island via the Comox International Airport at 10:00am in the morning, to begin my trip to the Sahara Desert, through Morocco in Northern Africa. While in Northern Africa I will be undertaking a 100 km trek through the Sahara Desert and surrounding region in order to raise money and awareness for the cause of domestic violence prevention in Port Alberni and across Canada. This incredible fundraiser has been organised by the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation.
(Photo: Bahia Palace)
Along with my colleagues, I will be beyond the Saghro region known for jagged peaks, impressive gorges and beautiful oases. This is the land of the famous Ait Atta tribe, a warrior people who migrate to the area from the High Atlas Mountains during the fall and winter.
After leaving Comox I will arrive in Morocco the following day at about 12:30 pm local time. That evening I will spend at a hotel in the ancient city of Marrakesh, with my colleagues Royal LePage brokerages across Canada.
The next day will largely be spent adjusting to both the climate, which will be important for the 100 km hike, and the culture. That day I will join a small group of Royal LePage real estate agents and we will be visiting Koutoubia Mosque, Saadien Tombs and Bahia Palace. We’ll round out the day with a visit to the Souks and the famous Djemaa El Fna square.
(Photo: Koutoubia Mosque)
(Photo: Saadien Tombs)
(Photo: Djemaa El Fna Square)
On Day 4, we will be driving for about 5 hours to Ouarzazate where we will overnight in a hotel.
Day 5 will have us leaving Ouarzazate by off road vehicle for the trip to Achbarou, known as the “Door to the Desert”, via the Tizi n’Tinifift Pass. Continuing along the Draa Valley, we’ll reach Tansikht. During the next leg of the trip we’ll enjoy viewing the volcanic massif known as Jebel Saghro. At this point we’ll begin the trek, with a 2 hour hike to our first camp.
(Photo: Tizi n’Tinifift Pass)
(Photo: Jebel Saghro)
On the morning of Day 6, we will begin our first hike past sand dunes and tamarisk trees, as we traverse the Maider El Kbir plateau. It is here that we may first see the first nomadic people in the area. These nomadic peoples move to the area, with their animals, from the High Atlas mountains during the fall when the first snows appear. After a long lunch, to avoid the hottest part of the day, we will hike across an ancient lake bed.
(Photo: High Atlas Mountain Nomads Camp at Caves)
It sounds like Day 7 will be the hardest day of trekking as we traverse Jebel Lamrakeb, with beautiful views of the multi coloured rock formations, and out into the desert landscape. We will finish the day walking down the O’Hare Gorges to camp in the Palm groves.
Day 8, will see us walking across some of the largest sand dunes in the area, passing Tizi n’Iguidou to join the dry Rhris River. On this evening we will be camping at the base of the sand dunes!
(Photo: Camping at the Base of Sahara Sand Dunes)
On Day 9, we will leave the sand dunes and trek across the open desert plateau, passing through a number of nomadic and Berber villages throughout the day. When we arrive at camp this evening we will have completed out 100km odyssey.
The following day we will make the 4x4 trip back to Ouarzazate along the Tafilalet Road via the Tineghir and Kasbah trail. Day 11 will have us arriving back in Marrakech. On Day 12 I will be leaving Northern Africa and arriving in Paris, where I will sleep in the airport (which should be a breeze after getting used to sleeping in the desert), before beginning my flight across the Atlantic Ocean and North America to land back on Vancouver Island.
When it’s all said and done, I will be so happy to be back home to my wife and kids. I expect this journey to be one that I will never forget, and I’m so happy that the Royal LePage Sheter Foundation has given me the opportunity to make a small difference in our community!
The Fenton Team is paying 100% of my travel costs, and the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation is paying 100% of the charitable administrative costs, so if you feel that you can sponsor me in this trek you can know that 100% of your donation will go to the cause. You will also be issued a receipt or income tax purposes. To support my trek in Morocco, please visit: