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Old 11-01-2009, 07:54 AM   #1
Navel OP
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Location: Galicia, Spain. Exiled in Madrid.
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Finding the SOFT G-SPOT in Morocco (adventure ride, lots of pics!)

So, after a while lurking on this awesome site it is finally my turn to write some ride report.

But let me start with a brief teaser before going straight to the point.






















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Old 11-01-2009, 08:17 AM   #2
Navel OP
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In the first place let me please introduce ourselves.

The Team: 4 spaniards and 1 belg.

From left to right: Manel, Kristof, Ricardo and myself, in the next installment you´ll see Cesar who shot this one.



The bikes: 4 x BMW f650 GS (3 Dakar) and 1 old Africa Twin 750(RN04)
The destination: Morocco

The schedule: 7 days in mid july, did I say July in Morocco?...Yeah, some like it hot you know!. To be honest it was simply difficult to find a date when everyone could go, so no choice about that and overheating, specially when we would reach Erg chebbi was a concern (see temp watch pic above).

The route:
Insert/extraction point was Nador, then South along Rekkam Plateau (some Paris Dakar tracks) down to Merzouga and famous Erg Chebbi dunes. After that West to Tinerrhir and some wild rocks up the Dades and Toldra Gorges to finally tackle some Atlas tracks on our way back North.

I will edit this post later and add a map.

By now, you may be wondering about this report´s title, the thing is that, although we have been quite ATTGATT compliant, thunderstorms, extreme heat, and other issues made as adopt a more relaxed approach to equipment which we called SOFT G-SPOT namely (Some OF The Gear- Some Periods Of Time).

Ditto (Parental advisory: the pic below contains half nudity)



I really made a bad choice taking my sailing trousers (light but zero breathabilty), but found out that riding trouserless wasn´t the solution.

Navel screwed with this post 11-01-2009 at 08:25 AM
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Old 11-01-2009, 08:39 AM   #3
Navel OP
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Day 1: Getting to the Ferry Harbor

Although Morocco and Spain are just a 15 km ferry away, we live like 1.000 km from the ferry harbour so we loaded -squashed- 4 bikes in a rental van to get to Almeria.

I was the last one to arrive to our meeting point, so they said no more place for my bike...



mmm Damm bastards, Get out of my way: Wheeliiieeee!
(Nothing like a wheelie to get things right)





Luckily Kristoff would join us later (near Valencia), because the van was a bit too full for his bike.

As we planned to ride along the algerian border, Melilla (spanish enclave) or Nador (Morocco) were the most convenint entry points to Morocco, we decided to entry via Nador as most of the paperwork could be done aboard the ferry, thus saving time and hassle at the spanish/ moroccan border in Melilla.

Ricardo at the compulsory ferry pic:



Just before entering the ferry, my battery died (Murphy sucks...and BMW service too! I Could have checked everything more thoroughly myself, but having bought the bike 2 weeks before departure I had no time, the guys from the BMW service didn´t seem to have checked the battt).

The ferry sailed off at night so we arrived in Nador early next morning.

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Old 11-01-2009, 09:08 AM   #4
Navel OP
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Day 2: Nador - Plateau du Rekkam (somewhere near EL Ateouf to be precise)

So first task in Nador was to find a battery, and I was quite lucky to find an “electrisien” no soon we entered the town.



Among the lots of batteries piled up against the walls, he happened to have a second hand battery which, after a fast charge made the job.



The mechanic was very nice guy and he even spoke quite decent spanish (Nador was once part of spanish Morocco, as he pointed out), and for 20 euro (installation included) it seemed a good deal.


First lesson learned in Africa: Resources are scarce and everything has a second/third/... life (by the way the bike is still running with the same batt in spite of my Dakar's reluctance to start when cold).

After getting a load of water we headed South towards Debdou, on our way we stopped at Taourirt to have some lunch, there we met a fellow spaniard who happened to be married to a Moroccan girl and told us about a nice restaurant, where we had our first Moroccan lamb brochettes.


I´d like to have mine a bit more done please.

In the outskirts of Debdou we visited the unimpressive ruins of a kasbah, then in Debdou we sampled the poshest cafés, as we discussed our route with the locals.



Debdou in the distance as we climbed to the plateau



We started our way into de Rekkam Plateau, an altiplane at about 2000m height, to our dismay the pistes we planned to ride on had been asphalted, damm tarmac!!



But being up in the plateau we had other worries, we were riding directly into a big thunderstorm, a lot of rays could be seen in the horizon, and we were the only thing in miles above the ground. And YES it rained, we expected it wouldnt be extremely hot at Rekkam because of the altitude but man... RAIN?!



Desert Survival Rule #1: Someone suggested that in a thunderstorm fiberglass helmets were more attractive to rays than bald heads, so bald-headed we went on (the SOFT G-SPOT style is born)...anyone input about this fiberglass issue?



Eventually, we found a big telecomm antenna which we thought a good place to camp by. Well actually not to close to it because the whole artifact was powered by a huge, noisy gas engine (pity the soldier who was there on duty the whole night guarding the antenna within the narrow fenced precint)...sorry no antenna pics, some camp pics instead:



Desert Survival Rule #2: In the desert you need to sleep: Mxxx and Cxxxx (names intentionally omitted to avoid a lawsuit), aka the snorers had to camp at an appropriate distance from the rest of us.



Day 3 coming soon...
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:11 AM   #5
GB
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Yay!! Another Morocco report!!

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Old 11-01-2009, 10:52 AM   #6
zorsch
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very cool, looking forward to going to morocco myself next year ! wish you a great time !
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AUSTRIA - SOUTHWESTERN EUROPE - MOROCCO - 10000km solo on my 125ccm: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=607393

AUSTRIA - CORSICA - SARDEGNA - 3000km solo on my 125ccm :
http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=485483
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