Crossing the Sahara

On the desert nomads' trail
Crossing the Sahara

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An authentic adventure where the vastness of the desert is a sight to behold. This is a challenge you won't soon forget.

Give in to this extraordinary, enchanting challenge. An exhilarating adventure through 100 km of the largest hot desert in the world begins upon your arrival at Ouarzazate. During the eight-day trek, you'll discover a mysterious and unusual region with scattered palm groves and golden dunes as far as the eye can see. Your voyage will take you to Marrakesh, also known as the "Pearl of the South" in French, a thousand-year-old city that majestically sits at the foot of the Atlas Mountains. Visiting its colourful medina is simply unforgettable.
Information Session
Soirée d'information pour le programme Challenge SRC
25 September 2018 - 6:00pm
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Soirée d'information pour le programme Challenge SRC
25 September 2018 - 6:00pm
Learn More

Details

Where

Morocco

When

March 13-24, 2019

Duration of the trip

12 days

Level of difficulty

Intermediate

Accomodation

Hotel, Riad, Bivouac

Fundraising goal

8 000 $
Participants
Yaman Alchirazi Alsabbagh, Melanie Beauchamp, Didier Breton-Aird, Jimmy Burner, Joanne Larochelle, Patrick Lavoie, Manon Leblond, France Longpré, Alexandre Millette, Sarah Perreault, Jade Vinet Rocheleau

Your Journey

Meeting of participants at Montreal-Trudeau Airport. Flying to Casablanca, Morocco. Dinner provided on the overnight flight.

Arrival to the airport in Casablanca. Welcome and road towards Ouarzazate, with a stop along the way to have dinner. 

Night in Ouarzazate

Departure to the beautiful Draa Valley, with its by palm groves. Past Zagora, participants will head to Tagounit via minibus and will break for a picnic lunch. Participants will then join their camel team in Ouled Driss (4.5h drive). Participants will camp overnight in the palm grove of M’Hamid.

Distance walked on this day: 8 km

Approximate duration of the trek: 3h

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Night in a bivouac

Participants depart the Draa palm grove to cross a desert with dunes and tamarisks. The second camp is located in Erg Ait Ounir. Distance walked on this day: 18 km 

Approximate duration of the trek: 6h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a bivouac

Keeping the same southwestern direction as the day before, participants reach the beautiful dunes of Erg Zehar (erg of luck). After lunch, they will cross the Draa and arrive at Erg Smar. Distance walked on this day: 19 km 

Approximate duration of the trek: 6.5h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a bivouac

Participants cross the Oued Miit dry riverbed and reach the vast Chegaga dunes. After the first rains, this area becomes a stunning grazing ground for camels and nomads alike, some of whom come from as far as the High Atlas. The night is spent in a bivouac located south of Chegaga at the foot of the Erg in the direction of Aouinat Naji. 

Distance walked on this day: 16 km Approximate duration of the trek: 5.5h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a bivouac

Participants will walk through the breathtaking sea of sand. Overnight camping at the foot of the big dune of Aabidlya. 

Distance walked on this day: 15 km 

Approximate duration of the trek: 5h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a bivouac

Participants head north towards the “Djebel Noir du Bani’’ where they will have the chance to admire the outstanding gorges of Oued M’hasser. Overnight camp will be set up in the heart of the mountain of Bani. Distance walked on this day: 20 km 

Approximate duration of the trek: 6.5h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a bivouac

Participants will travel throughout several gueltas in Oued M’hasser, Hassis Diab Oasis and while crossing the desert plateau. The last camp will be set up in the small Oasis of Aferdou. Distance walked on this day: 14 km 

Approximate duration of the trek: 5h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a bivouac

In the final hours of the trek, participants will reach the Foum Laachar Pass, which boasts a magnificent view over the plains of El Feijja. All-terrain vehicles will meet participants at the foot of the djebel to drive them back to Ouarzazate while passing through Zagora (4.5h drive). Dinner and overnight in a riad will be provided to participants. 

Distance walked on this day: 9 km 

Approximate duration of the trek: 2.5h 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a riad

After lunch, participants will depart to Marrakech by passing through Imini Aguelmouss and Tichka (4.5h drive). A cultural city tour of Marrakech with a local guide will allow participants to discover the old town, its architecture and its history. Participants will have dinner in a restaurant in the medina. Breakfast, lunch and dinner included 

Night in a riad

After breakfast, participants will transfer to the local airport and fly back to Montreal.

Be ready to face your challenge

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Equipment

In order to be comfortable throughout your adventure, it's essential to bring the right equipment. The secret is to protect the most vulnerable parts of your body against heat, cold and moisture. Always pack warm clothing and waterproof hiking shoes. You may want to consider bringing along a toque and even a walking stick. Choose a light backpack and carry nothing but the essentials for your journey. Check out our tool box section for more tips and tricks.

Logistics

Even though the CRS Challenge is a personal experience, it's also a group adventure. Our team of experts will provide you with useful advice and the answers to all of your questions from the moment you register to the moment you return. We have mastered the art of logistics, thanks to our knowledge of the destinations we offer and the fact that we organize several challenges every year, making your overall experience all the more enjoyable.

Morocco: a thousand-year-old kingdom that has preserved its authentic charm

The Kingdom of Morocco, one of the world's oldest states, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlas Mountains. Its varying landscapes are characterized by fertile plains and ephemeral, undulating dunes shaped by the wind, constantly offering us a new sight to enjoy. Its cities and their medinas are stimulating experiences that awaken visitors' senses. During your trip, you'll come to know the legendary hospitality and friendliness of the land's people. A large number of cultures coexist there. The Moroccan nation is comprised of Arabs, Berbers, Tuaregs and nomads. They all share their cultures and traditions and are very attached to the preservation of their heritage. Moroccan food alone is worth the trip. Its colourful, saffron and cinnamon-scented tajines are world-renowned. Pastilla is a well-known, delicious dish served on festive occasions and is a treat you absolutely don't want to miss. A visit to Morocco is always too short!

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Thank you to all of our
partners

The fulfillment of our mission is thanks in large part to our partners. Without them, none of this would be possible. We wish to thank the following partners for their generous contributions to this challenge.
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