Nice sunset view as we pass over London, England, on our way to Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Hiking in Albania, Kosovo, and Montenegro.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Porto, Portugal on June 25th!

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Spectacular route R307 crossing through Morocco's High Atlas Mountains

There are several ways to pass through the High Atlas Mountains. The easiest is the well traveled route N9 from Marrakech. But that would have been a major detour for us, so I was looking at the other options. I read a lot of reviews and did a lot of research and decided to try route R307.

Some of the reviews mentioned the need for 4 wheel drive, but others said they had done it with a normal campervan. Most of it depends on what the recent weather has been like. There are a lot of rock slides and sections where the road surface has deteriorated and some parts can be muddy.

Either way, it is slow going. I anticipated it would take four hours to do the 170 km (105 mile) mountain pass. And that's after we already do the two and a half hour drive to get to the pass!

But, it's been a couple of weeks since the last storm, and it was another perfect blue sky day. So we had the weather on our side.

We got an early start, and set off at exactly 8am.

The first section of our drive was on route R302 heading west.
We had done this part in reverse the other day so didn't take many photos.

Lots of twists and turns.

The twists and turns were affecting Cameron's stomach.
We sat for five minutes, then gave him the front seat and he was better after that.

Scenery along the way.

We stopped for fuel just before the town of Demnat and sat and had an early lunch and took a break. Then we headed through Demnat and onto the R307 into the mountains.

Heading through Demnat.



Almost feels like you're in an airplane!

The road rises quickly. It's paved all the way, and in fact they have built a new section that doesn't show up on google maps yet. It takes about 15 minutes off the drive, and it's a wide paved road at that point. They do have signs, so I just followed the signs towards Ouarzazate. No traffic at all, in either direction.


Wow. The fantastic scenery begins!


Hm. I wonder how we get through the mountain?

This is a newer section of the road!

There are a lot of sections of the road where it has been redone, but then you'll drive a km or so and there will be a section that has been worked on, but not completed. It's all very random.

There is also one section of very tight switchbacks. One of the reviews I had read said maximum 7 meter length, and I would agree with that. Max is 5.9 meters and the corners were still tight. 

Just after that section, we came across the only other campervan we saw along the whole route. It was an older couple in a motorhome that I guessed was about 7 meters. They were headed the opposite way and had to back up so that I could pull off into a little part so they could get by. I remember thinking that they are going to have a tough time on those switchbacks ahead.

Wow. Again!

Yes, some people live up here.

Despite the random condition of the road, the views are worth it.



Ruth took a video of one of the rougher sections...


Fantastic.



No idea what these boys are up to.



Interesting mountain.

Blooms on the trees.
No idea what kind of trees.





Finally, we came to the end of the mountains, and came to the plains that exist between the mountains and the Sahara Desert.

What is that funny light in the distance?

Zoomed in.

This is the cooling tower of the NOOR Solar Power Complex. You can read more about it here... https://www.power-technology.com/projects/noor-ouarzazate-solar-complex/



We stopped in Ouarzazate and did another big grocery shop. You sure go through a lot more food with five people compared to two!

Noticed a lot more tourists in town. Ouarzazate is on a major tourist route between Marrakech and the Sahara Desert.

Max, on the right.

Sunset in Morocco.

Yesterday's drive.

It was a long drive and a long day for us (especially the driver!), but so worthwhile. Just spectacular. 

Today we are heading into Ouarzazate to explore.

It's getting warmer. High of 30C (86F) today.

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Nice price drop on the Shark Anti Allergen Stick Vac.

And in Canada...

2 comments:

  1. Interesting bit of trivia. That solar farm was featured in the 2005 movie Sahara with Matthew McConaughey and Penelope Cruz. In fact, there is a fight scene at the top of that tower. Great movie, imo.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We are going to try and download that movie when we get some decent free wifi. We enjoy watching movies of places that we have been to or are going to. Thanks!

      Delete

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