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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Morocco - Atlas Mountains' roads in winter

Hi All,

I'm planning a brief trip to Morocco during the Christmas/New Year period and would like to get an idea of the road/weather conditions through the middle and high Atlas.

I'll be driving a 4x4 down past Fes and then on down to midelt, Rachidia and Erfoud.

Does anyone know if the main route through the mountains be passable without snow chains during this period?

Many thanks

Ben
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Hotel Panorama, Azrou, Jan 2007

The tongue-in-cheek answer is that it depends whether it has been snowing. ;-) When there are heavy snow falls, the snow barriers are lowered to prevent traffic starting the journey. On the route you are proposing, one set of barriers closes off the road from Immouzer to Azrou, the other from Azrou to Timadite.


State of the art information displays (Azrou to Midelt open with convoy)

In the highly unlikely event that you are caught out in the open there are 'Abri de Neigement' (snow shelters) in strategic places. However the snow fall rarely lasts more than one day and the snow ploughs then get busy clearing and gritting the road. The main roads are obviously important for business and will be quickly cleared.

Snow chains are not needed.


-5C on the gritted road between Azrou and Timadite

Tim
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Wow, Are you sure that's Morocco and you didn't get some alpine pix mixed up? When I was in Azrou for Xmas 2003 it was about 20C warmer than that.
I would have thought global warming worked the other way round.
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Thanks Tim,

just what I was after. The last time went through Morocco is was blimmin hot in the middle of August...

Ben
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Old 17 Nov 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by backofbeyond View Post
When I was in Azrou for Xmas 2003 it was about 20C warmer than that.
I've accumulated a total of more than nine weeks in the Azrou area in various seasons (I've been looking for land to buy) and Jan 2007 was the only time I've experienced snow, however a week before one of my trips there was a fall of 50cm! It quickly disappears where there's no trees to provide shade.

The norm for Morocco is sunny weather in the winter with max temperatures in the south in the mid 20s. At another point on the Jan 2007 trip I got as far as Imilchil which is deep within the High Atlas range. Jan is normally a great time to visit.

Tim
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Old 4 Jan 2008
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Have been to Azrou neck of the woods in February to find roads closed and conditions worse than in the Alps on the way down (circa one week before). Taking the long way round the snow was over a foot deep by the side of the road.

Only till I got south of the Atlas did it start getting warm enough to take off my down jacket and waxed over trousers!

Matt
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