/ Jbel Toubkal - (Jan to March)?
Just curious what the conditions are like and recommended kit. I.e should I even bother packing an axe or rope?
Only done it in summer conditions, but that time of year is winter in the Atlas and snow and ice are to be expected. I hear it's nice on skis. There's a lot of gully lines and nice ridges to go at as well if you've got time.
Definitely an axe and crampons for the easy route; a rope depends on what else you might be wanting to do
I've done it twice. Dec and January. If you go the usual route then crampons and a walking axe are necessary. Ropes not needed unless you or your partners are tierd on the descent and want some security. Of course this only works if the other of you isn't to tired to hold them!
Set off by 7 and you'll comfortably be down for 1, which leaves enough time for lunch and to head back down to Imlil that day, or sit outside the refugio drinking tea in the sunshine.
I would recomend doing some of the other 4000's there at the same time. Far quieter and can be more fun! And again, walking axe and crampons are sufficient.
Yes, it is definitely worth taking 2 axes and a rope! There is lots of alpine/ice climbing to do in winter - described in this guidebook http://www.libreriadesnivel.com/libros/toubkal/9788498291414/
Off there myself in mid-Feb with a group of four. 'Moroccan Atlas, the trekking guide' by Alan Palmer is a decent read but there arnt many texts about.
Flights from Gatwick are currently £103 inc. taxes and luggage to Marrakech on Easyjet.
Our kit list is based on experience of other ranges and internet research only so also welcome others view. We're taking: 4-season sleeping bag (and bivvy in case of dramas), bothy bag shelter (mountain rescue doesnt really exist apparently), walking ice axe and crampons (3 of us are more mountain walkers than technical winter climbers), quality mountain jacket and trousers, belay jacket (i'm going for Paramo torres), Jack Wolfskin Blizzard fleece. Head-tourch is a bit of a must for an early start to reach the summit as the sun rises - assuming theres any visibility at all!
Feedback really welcome from those who think I've lost it...
Crampons are needed, but we did not have axes, just one walking pole each.
Elsewhere on the site
Pete Whittaker has flashed the 32 pitch route Freerider 5.12d on El Capitan in Yosemite Valley over three days,... Read more
On Sunday 12th October the Depot Climbing Centre Leeds held its 5th annual Battle of Britain competition. The competition has... Read more
The B.D.V. — short for Black Diamond Vertical — jacket and pants are Black Diamond’s most versatile climbing... Read more
Aiming at designing and producing the best belay glasses to protect climbers’ necks, Y&Y focuses on every detail to... Read more
Climbing as a discipline offers plentiful metaphors for tackling life's obstacles - bravery, courage, climbing to... Read more