8 days singletrack mountain biking tour in the Atlas Mountains Morocco for experienced riders: We have seen many wonderful mule paths that we really wanted to ride on our trail bikes. Now we have settled the matter and created a centre-based single-track program near Marrakech. Adrenaline, great beauty and a journey of cultural discovery are waiting for you in the Atlas Mountains.
Morocco singletrack mountain bike trip in the High Atlas for experienced riders, no fire roads, only single tarck! If you are looking for a fully supported technical enduro, freeride biking tour, you are welcome to ride the best trails the Atlas Mountains of Morocco can offer.
Adventurous mountain bikers looking to explore the High Atlas Mountains & Berber villages outside of Marrakech.
Trip length : 8 days
Group size : Min 2, max 10 persons
This bike adventure takes place in the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco, just a short drive from the vibrant city of Marrakech. The High Atlas Mountains are a spectacular setting for a mountain biking trip with hundreds of miles of dusty singletrack just waiting to be explored. With many years of experience guiding in the region, your local hosts can help you explore this region’s hidden riding potential.
The scenery makes for an impressive backdrop to your journey. The rugged and remote terrain has resisted the pressured of the modern world and feels like a window into a bygone era. Dramatic valleys offer vivid contrasts with the lush green irrigated fields along the valley bottom set against the barren rocky scree slopes that lead up to the snow-capped peaks.
The area is dotted with the villages and towns of the Berber people; their characteristic stone houses nestled picturesquely into steep hillsides. This region of Morocco remained isolated until the early 20th century and for a long time the fiercely independent local people resisted French colonisation. To this day the Berber people retain a strong sense of their unique identity and operate in many ways independently of the Moroccan government. The regions rich cultural heritage makes it the perfect destination for an adventure.
What to Expect
Day 1: Airport – Marrakech
At the airport, we are met by our driver and then have a 30 minute transfer to our riad in the city’s historic centre
Day 2: Imlil & Atlas Mountains
In the morning we drive towards the atlas foothills and the small village of Imlil Situated in the heart of the Toubkal National Park, Imlil is the principal trailhead village for biking peaks in North Africa. The village offers good infrastructure for people wanting a pleasant mountain base for a few days, but is also an excellent place to start and/or finish longer, more linear, hikes. Its accessibility to Marrakech (under an hour and a half by road) makes it an excellent choice to get a good feel for how rural Moroccans live their lives, and much of the surrounding area is home to a landscape of snow-capped mountains (in season), verdant valleys and earth-brick villages where life has changed little in centuries.
When everyone is ready and all our kit is loaded we start the first (optional but recommended) climb of the day. The support vehicle goes ahead to prepare lunch at the top of the Tamatert pass (2300m). This is an early lunch as the climb is short but very useful for checking everything with the bikes is and working correctly ready for the singletrack. After lunch the fun really begins! We follow the singletrack above the Imenane River. The route takes us through a number of narrow villages, all linked by singletrack, as we descend (with a few short climbs) all the way into Imlil and the lodge for the night (1720) Mountain biking approx 39 km.
Day 3: Imlil – Ouirgane valley short walk + mountain biking)
Today we are going over the pass Tizi Mezzik (2280m). Our bikes are transported by a mule and we are all walking to the pass. Then we will hit the road again with our bikes. A nice but difficult – singletrack – descent over rough and sometimes steep slopes through the beautiful valley of Azzaden village. Along the way, we have views over beautiful valleys. Total: walking approx. 1, 5 hours Mountain biking approx. 35 km.
Day 4: Ouirgane – Ait Zitoune
Today we begin a 2-day long mission into the back country and overnight in a simple guest house in the village of Ait Zitoune (of course we will transport your overnight kit bag here for you). We roll down to the dam of Ouirgane and soon begin a trail that runs all the way above an impressive gorge. The first section is substantially exposed and soon heads steeply upward- so be prepared for a little hike-a-bike the first half hour and wear appropriate rubber soled biking shoes. From the crest and there awaits an epic 10 km stretch, mostly downhill, along the river gorge, with awesome views throughout. The path is reasonably wide and not too technical, but there are steep sides and some risk so concentration must be on top. In the bottom of the ravine we turn along the mountainside west onto more undulating paths to the village of Imi n’Talat where a hearty lunch waiting for us. The rest of the day sees us tackle a mix of riverbeds, gravel roads and classic singletrack trails around the area of Air Zitoune. Here we have some flexibility and can lengthen or shorten the route based on the group’s wishes. At our finishing point there awaits a local hammam (steam room), dinner and after darkness has fallen, a roof terrace, from where we can see the city lights from Marrakech to the north, the snowy Atlas mountains to the south and thousands of stars above- paradise. Mountain biking approx 35 km.
Day 5: Ait Zitoune – Imi N Tala
We start with a singletrack Ridgeline ascent. The grip is good but you need to pick a good line and save your energy for the tricky bits which are thrown in there just to spice it up! From the top of this challenge we have a traverse and singletrack descent back into a riverbed on the other side of the valley for another, very technical ascent. This one is rockier (but not loose) and good trials skills will be an enormous advantage. A real lung buster, but you’ll be amazed at the level of grip that drives you forward and makes it a really good section. From the top here there is a fantastic singletrack descent for your reward before another, shorter, smooth, steady singletrack traverse which pops us onto a dirt track road which takes us to the head of another fast, smooth singletrack descent and the van for lunch which is just 1km down the road. After lunch we have a short, steady traverse through several rustic villages to Ait Ahmad where the Gite or the guest house for the night is. An earlier finish, usually around 4.30pm will help you recover for the next singletrack ‘Mega Day’ tomorrow. This is a great village to explore with its incredible landscape, scenery and caves. (1483m Mountain biking approx. 35 km.
Day 6: Imi Ntala – Imidle
This is the last day on the bike and the best. A real singletrack ‘Mega Day’ which will challenge your fitness and technical ability, but only because the trails are so good you just ‘have’ to keep going! We start with a gentle traverse and climb to the top of the pass which takes 45 minutes and includes a 20 minute hike-a-bike, but the rewards at the top are incomprehensible! If you enjoy single track, this is your heaven! This is fast and flowing to start and as it drops in height the trail becomes more technical into the riverbed. All easy to ride, one of the sections of single track runs through a dry riverbed. It’s smooth with rocks lining the twisting route so if you come off-line you get punished. The twisting route makes you throw the bike around as you shift your weight from one pedal to the next to find the grip out of the slide and into the next bend. Almost like slalom. Big gear, flat out. Mountain biking approx. 38 km.
Day 7: Ouirgane – Kik Plateau – Marrakech
We end the trip with a relaxed day biking on the majestically beautiful Kik plateau. From the plateau we have a magnificent views of the areas covered on previous days. We begin with a 20 minute drive up to Moulay Brahim, where we unload the bikes and cycle off-road through the limestone outcrops, reaching a small dirt road that runs parallel to the edge of the plateau. This is followed by rapid and lovely cycling on a mule trails and rough double tracks that cut across the plateau- a real playground with small jumps and natural velodromes. We enjoy a final trail lunch in the village of Agdour and continue mostly downhill to the village of Tachdirte where we take a small loop on an airy canyon edge, a really nice and special stage. Then it’s off down the plateau on a rough dirt road where we can let the speed creep up a little… At the bottom of the plateau our support vehicles await, ready to transport us back to Marrakech around three o’clock in the afternoon. After a little bike wash we go back to our Riad and prepare to go out in Marrakech.
Day 8: Marrakech – Airport
This cycling adventure through Morocco comes to an end today. There are no activities planned and you are free to leave at any time, Transfers to airport arranged accordingly.
Note: This itinerary and the duration of the activities are subject to change due to group abilities and preferences, and weather conditions and forecasts.
What Includes, Airport Transfers, 2 Night hotel in Marrakech on BB, Private Transport from/to Marrakech, English Tour Guide, Accommodation during the trip, All meals during the trip, Assistance car during the trip
Does not Include, Travel Insurance, Tips, Any Private Expenses, Drinks and Items of personal nature, Meals in Marrakech, Bike hire (Full Suspension) + Helmet (available to rent from our bike shop)
Bookable Extras, Umbrella, Sunscreen, T-Shirt, Entrance Fees
We recommend packing the following items:
- Normal daily clothes
- Padded cycling shorts and gloves
- Breathable top or cycling jersey
- Sunglasses/eye protection
- Stiff-soled shoes suitable for cycling
- Waterproofs and long cycling trousers
- For the earlier departures you may need some warmer layers
- Sun cream
- Water bottle or Camelback
Energy cycling gels offer a quick form of crabs replenishment. Most contain the simple crab sugar, which is the fastest form of energy to replace glycogen. It’s suggested that people who cycle at a moderate intensity for more than 90 minutes, need to replace between 30g and 65g of carbohydrates per hour and we would thoroughly recommend bringing some of these with you, as well as some energy bars.
During this adventure, you will be staying in a Guest house in the Berber village, but we can also update the accommodation suits your needs.