Moroccan Road Adventure Day 2
Saddle Skedaddle Moroccan Road Adventure Day Two – 1st November 2015 – Imlil to Ijoukak, 41 miles, 2,100ft
As everyone emerged from the multi level accommodation and gathered outside to assess the weather it became apparent that I was ill equipped for the day! It was cool and the air was heavy with the fine mist of rain and boy was I feeling silly for deciding I wouldn’t need to pack anything waterproof! I had leg warmers and arm warmers for cool days, extra jerseys to layer up with and a thin windproof jacket, but nothing remotely useful at keeping water out! I tried not to worry too much about this; I could only get wet once right?
Wrong! On this ride I would get wet many times over as the rain seemed hell bent on recommencing with every descent we hit, starting with the first fifteen miles down in to Asni. A was already known to his friends for loving a speedy descent so it was no surprise to them that he whooshed off unperturbed by the conditions, in fact he made such good time on the down hill, he’d bought and consumed a coffee by the time we caught him up! Not wanting to miss out on a brew, on arrival in to the village we also stopped for a warming coffee and hoped that the rain would ease. At this point that didn’t seem likely and as we stood wet and shivering we quickly agreed that we should just press on to the accommodation with no further stops en route.
For the next 25 miles the road undulated gently upwards with a cheeky climb thrown in here and there. The sun broke through on occasion to warm us, but the respite was short for as soon as we began to head downwards to any degree the rain began again. Despite that, it was a pleasant day’s riding; as long as we kept moving!
And the motivation to do just that was high. We sped closer to the Gite, passing orange and olive groves along the way and suddenly we were there. The bikes were quickly parked as clamoured inside and crowded around the fire roaring away in the lounge peeling off the wettest outer layers and trying to find places to hang our many, many wet clothes. There were a good number of ladies on this trip who have travelled many times and were prepared for every eventuality, J & I quickly retrieved their travel washing lines from their bags and soon the entire room was festooned with soggy laundry as we fed the fire logs and fanned the flames in an effort to speed up the drying process.
Not one of us cared that lunch, and indeed dinner was served with leggings, shorts, and arm warmers draped overhead, nor that all of that days clothes would carry a distinct smoky smell until we had the opportunity to wash them a few days later.
Omar fed us well again and kept us supplied with copious amounts of coffee and mint tea until we were feeling warmed through. And in the evening Omar and Saaid entertained us with
Berber songs and a brief history of the country before we slunk off to bed to dream of sunshine and warm weather, hoping to wake to the same in the morning!