January - February 2006

Oasis campsite in MoroccoOasis campsite in Morocco

2. Test trip with Action Mobil Robusto + Kawasaki

It was with great expectations but also with a bit of sadness, that we left our temporary base in Zurich. Since the end of 2005, we have been on the road.

In deep winter we had left our home country and started our new life as nomads. Through France and Spain we travelled to take the ferry from Algeciras to Tanger in Morocco. Even though the motor way service areas are notorious for the much feared hold-ups, we were spared experiences of that kind. We usually picked a parking lot in the evening and the next morning found ourselves surrounded by motor homes that had spent the night just besides us. On tar roads we drove along the Atlantic coast to Sidi Akhfennir.

In the south of the country, we once again tested Robusto and the Kawi on the tracks between Foum Zguid via Mhamid to Taouz. This stony, rough and bumpy terrain as well as the extensive fields of soft sand require adequate ground clearance and engine power. When transversing smaller ergs of dunes, we couldn't do without using our shovels. Due to heavy rain, driving through Oueds, overgrown by bushes and through hydro-clay plains was only possible with outmost care. A large Sebka, filled with water, brought back memories of the special driving course where we learnt about how to steer a skidding car. We spent the nights in landscapes of stones of fantastical shapes and impressive horizons.

In Merzuga, on the foot of the beautiful sand dunes of Erg Chebbi, we relaxed for a few days, drawing traces into the sand with our Kawi.

We started our way back over the Great Atlas mountains and the Tizi-n-Tischka pass. The drive over this pass is wonderful, even though the road is in parts very narrow and the sides of the road are often not secured by crash barriers. Since parts of the road are missing, driving with oncoming traffic is not always easy. One must not be afraid of heights in order to be able to enjoy this journey.

The artists and the street kitchens in Marrakesch delighted us once again.

On our journey back to Tanger we encountered - as often before after rainfall in Morocco - several spectacular accidents. However, considering the nonchalance with which people cross the highway either on foot or on bicycle, this is not much of a surprise.

Our two-month trip to Morocco was of great interest to us in every respect. We got to know better the tricks of Robusto, we hade encounters of various kinds with the locals, but learnt a lot. We ourselves are learning how to go about this new kind of time that we now have at our disposal and have become ever more open to new experiences.

Photos

Morocco: February 2006