Ride in to Marrakech from Essaouira is fairly uneventful. Traffic in Marrakech is pretty heavy. Relax at hotel the rest of the day.
Head downtown to see the sights. The cab hits a motorcycle on the way in, this is treated like nothing here. The downtown is another Moroccan tourist trap filled with fake guides though not quite as bad as Fes. These big cities really aren’t my thing.
I head out to Jbel Toubkal, the highest peak in North Africa. Today I am the motorcyclist that gets hit by a cab. Fortunately it is just a bump at a red light. Both myself and the bike are fine. The jerry can has a black scuff on it but isn’t damaged. At a construction zone near Tahnaout a water truck has flipped into the ditch. I stop and get out my first aid kit but the driver is alright and climbing out of the cab by the time I get back so it is not necessary. Snow is already at the peak and even in Imlil the temperature is cooler and my ear drums tell me the altitude is quite a bit higher than Marrakech.
Today I ride the notorious N9 highway from Marrakech to Ourzazette. They are currently re-working the road through the high pass and have created wide highways with proper passing lanes. This is likely due to the route having a reputation as being dangerous but it looks like the new road will be much safer. I arrive in Ourzazette around two o’clock and decide to ride to Demnat on R307. The Moroccan national highway system is pretty good, consistent with the Trans-Canada Highway for the most part. The regional and provincial highways however can be decent two lane highways to single lane with intermittent gravel. R307 is the latter. About an hour into the ride I finally figure out what the squeaking noise coming from the bike this afternoon is. The right pannier rack top bolt has come loose and is rubbing against the spacer. I spend about 45 minutes trying to get the rack lined back up but end up strapping it in place as I can’t get the bolt holes lined up on the side of the road. When I finally do get it fixed later it requires disassembling both sides of the rack and a lot of swearing. The ride takes me through a number of small villages and over a few high >2200 m mountain passes. I arrive in to Demnat at night due to the rack and worse than expected road conditions. I can’t find a reasonably priced hotel room and end up playing the GPS hotel chase in the dark which I don’t like as the roads aren’t good and people and animals are on the road. I finally find a truck stop hotel at 10:00 and settle in to my sleeping bag liner for the night.
Sorry there are limited pictures from today I was running the action cam in video mode which is too much hassle to upload.
Long ride to Tangier by Casablanca and Rabat.
It is raining today so I go buy my ferry ticket to Spain, and get the Moroccan mud hosed off the bike.
Rainy ferry ride to Spain and stay in Estepona.