A ride around Ouarzazate / Morocco

As part of our South-Morocco tour, we planned to spend New Year’s Eve in Ouarzazate. Or near. We usually stay 20km from the city, at the border of the lake, in a family run B&B named “Les Tourmalines”. A quiet, wonderful place. Before leaving Casablanca, I contacted Peter, a friend who lives there and operates enduro tours in the region to hook up for a ride. Luckily he was available and willing to show me around so we agreed he’d pick me up on the 31st at 0900 and we’ll leave from Tourmalines.
After a quick coffee we headed west on tarmac, to then turn south into the desert and towards the lake. The terrain was great, starting in a riverbed that allowed for high speed with some occasional technical bits, then turning into rocky speedy sections until we climbed to the hill surrounding the lake. We longed the water and our path included technical descents and some climbs through the rocky terrain that was sometimes longed by savanna-like grass.
We then arrived to Ouarzazate and turned south towards the Fint oasis. I’ve been there a couple of weeks before on my bike but I obviously took the known road, while Peter now showed another path that got us to the valley from the other side so we could cross the oasis.
The into the valley was a well-flowing speedy “piste” that I greatly enjoyed. Once in the valley we had to cross the river a couple of times and had to choose our way as there was no defined path in some sections. It was a great fun.
We returned to Ouarzazate from the other side of the valley and went to Peter’s HQ. He showed me his workshop and we chatted around, then had lunch and coffee in front of the workshop. As Peter is also the importer of Motoz tires, I got myself a new rear tyre that his mechanic was kind enough to fit while we ate.
Leaving him to prepare for the evening party I headed back to the family, but as I didn’t fancy 20km on asphalt, I wondered off to some unknown dirt roads that sometimes led the wrong way. I gave me the opportunity to test the tyre and to explore the area.
The tyre works great by the way. I can only recommend. Will test in in the sand soon 🙂

I’ve uploaded below a short video of the ride, the map and trip data as well as some pics. Enjoy.

Thank you Peter for the ride and happy 2016 to all!

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