Off-road Christmas

We arrived in Merzouga yesterday evening after a fabulous but long day of piste. Using the Wifi at the Hotel Toureg to upload this post. In general posts will be a day or two behind.

The ferry arrived on Tuesday in Nador under the wane sunshine of mid-afternoon. The formalities took longer than expected at the port because the authorities wanted to examine the Scania. We had hoped to make it to Missour around nightfall, but we decided to settle for Guercif. It was already quite dark when we passed Hassi Berkane, and we drove carefully the last hour since there are often surprises on the road at night. Pedestrians, bicycles, sheep, branches, rocks: we saw all of these in time.

We stayed the night at the Atlas Hotel in Gercif, a simple hotel, clean and comfortable at a very correct price. Dinner at the restaurant was ok, but the breakfast was fabulous. Coffee and warm milk, a large glass of sweet fresh orange juice, an enormous pain au chocolat, cheese spread and strawberry jam: 2.25€ per person, less than the price of a coffee in most major European cities.

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We got a rather late start, after picking up bread and cookies at the local bakery. From Guercif, we headed south to Missour, through the Gorges of the Ziz in the Tafilalet to Errachidia, stopping for a late lunch at the gas station just after Rich. The tajine was delicious, but they didn’t have much left after the midday rush, so we ordered some brochettes as well.

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At Errachidia we stopped at the supermarket for some last minute supplies. Not far south of town we turned onto the piste, driving carefully until we found a nice place for a Christmas Eve bivouac. The warmth of the company made up for the inefficiency of the anemic campfire. 

Hoping our readers had a wonderful Christmas too.

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