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Mountain Hardwear is inspired by the way its athletes redefine the limits of their sports and by the way they live their lives.
No one understands product performance better than the men and women who make their living climbing, running and skiing, with demands on gear and clothing starting long before they reach base camp.
For Spring 2013 Mountain Hardwear has merged extreme sports with everyday life on a road trip to Taghia to conquer Morocco's remote mountains and unclimbed rock.
The Journey follows a group of European climbers and the world famous Slack Liners as they step out of their comfort zone and travel to a remote climbing destination to test their skills and Mountain Hardwear's performance technology in the High Atlas Mountains.
Day 1 - Geneva to Marrakech
Final destination: Taghia, High Atlas Mountains Getting there: Flight to Marrakech, five hour bus ride to Azilal, 90km in a jeep to Zaouia Ahansal, two hours walk to the village base Altitude: 1900m
Tim Emmett: "I had many friends that had been out to the Altas Mountains before, they all loved it, and I wanted to find out why. When Mountain Hardwear asked if I could travel there with the Slack Liners and a team of Athletes I knew I had to drop everything and go!"
Emma Tywford: "After a disappointing few months with some very bad UK weather the opportunity to go to Morocco with the rest of the European Mountain Hardwear team sounded exciting and exotic. I was excited to be spending time with inspirational people such as Tim and Liv. "The idea of traveling to Taghia in the Atlas Mountains; a place where you have to walk the last bit for two hours to get there sounded amazing and it certainly didn't disappoint when we saw the final views of these beautiful rock faces and gorges."
Day 2 - Exploring Marrakech
Day 3 - Hiking approach from Zaouia Ahanesal to Taghia Village
Tim Emmett: "Taghia is beautiful alpine retreat with the village base at 1900m. Surrounded by vast walls some over 800m high, Taghia is like a taste of the Himalayas but on a more intimate scale. "When you arrive at the village it's like going back in time. Untouched by internet, commercialism and modern ways, there is no phone reception either. It's like a piece of heaven. Self sustainable Agroturismo, most of the food available is grown and harvested in the fields surrounding the village. "The only way to get to the village is by walking or taking a donkey. No cars and no roads just a dirt track winding it's way through secret valleys and gorges. "One of our key objectives was to find a place where we could climb, jump and high line. The Sector Cascade 2000ft above the village was the obvious choice. "After an hour or so we arrived at numerous twisted stairs woven out of tree branches, surprisingly stable and oozing with character. "As we prepared to jump, the heavens opened. Clouds filled the valley and darkness ensued, jumping wasn't an option. We realized a bivi would be the best way to get a jump in the morning and although we didn't have sleeping bags, we had a secret weapon The Ghost Whisperer Hooded Down Jacket."
Day 4 - Base jumping, Slack Line, Climbing
Tim Emmett: "After a fresh night and snow dusting the highest peaks, we were greeted by the warm rays of the sun. Conditions were perfect and the jump was ours. "Following the contours of the landscape makes Wingsuit flying around this kind of terrain an amazing experience. Especially when you're the first person to fly it. Constantly assessing angles, distance and speed. Feeling the air move over your body, trimming your position, diving and swooping. Flying down to the village for breakfast was definitely worth missing dinner and the comfort of a bed for the night!"
Tim Emmett: "Later that day the Slack Liners set up the line bridging the gap by the imaginary waterfall, 2000ft above the village; an impressive sight. "Emma and I had noticed tufa veins coating the overhanging cliff under the high line, so we decided to take a look. With only a handful of routes the plum line was Arnaud Petit's masterpiece right up the middle of the overhang, directly underneath the high-line. We both climbed the route - the Slack Liners looked like miniature puppets on a string."
Emma Twyford: "I missed the feeling of being like an excited little child, I couldn't wait to climb."
Tim Emmett: "The amount of unclimbed rock in the area is astounding and for such a remote place it's relatively easy to get to. Easyjet fly regularly to Marrakesh, then after a 5 hour bus ride you arrive at Azilal, the closest village to Taghia. 90km in a jeep to Zaouia Ahansal and then a couple of hours walk. It really is a perfect warm up for cragging in the Greater Ranges."
Day 5 - Hiking from Oujdad bridge near Taghia village towards Tadrarate
Gear News and Outdoor Industry News at UKC and UKH presents climbing, walking and mountaineering equipment and stories that will be of interest to UKClimbing.com's readers. They are not gear reviews and are provided by companies that advertise with UKClimbing Limited. Please feel free to comment about the stories and products on the associated thread.