Sunday, 13 September 2015

Morocco:The Atlantic Coast: Sidi Ifni - Tan Tan

Fort Bou-Jerif
Despite getting to Sidi Ifni quite late we decided to carry on all the way to Fort Bou-Jerif. As always we knew that if we didn't get to the campsite, we could set up the tent anywhere and just continue the following morning This time, however, we had no trouble whatsoever reaching Fort Bou-Jerif. The track was clear all the way to the river which prevented us from getting to our destination last year. All we could see then was the old fort on the other side of the river. This time the crossing was a piece of cake as it was as clear as the rest of the track. So finally we got there!

The campsite wasn't very busy. We were never alone in there but there would be only another family or couple staying there with us. We learnt that there busy period starts in September. We did, however, meet a German family, a couple travelling with two teenage daughters who were planning off roading in Africa, Zambia, next holiday. That sounds like an adventure to me!

A great outdoor area to escape the sun.

The swimming pool: small but perfectly adequate. 

Views from the swimming pool across the campsite

Moroccan salad with deep fried egg

Our very first tagine this trip. Many more will follow.

Another abandoned building falling into ruins. 

The river this year...

...and that's what we were against last year. They may not have been more water in there last year  but the river banks were muddy and steep.

Lunchtime in a 'restaurant' in Guilmam

Our last night in Fort Bou-Jerif. The owner of the campsite suggested we spend the night in one of his tents due to a thunderstorm coming. It wouldn't have been the first thunderstorm we had whilst camping but the owner insisted for the kids. People in Morocco seem to take storms very seriously.

Inside the tent

And that's the tent. The storm didn't come but it was a new experience for us to spend a night in such a tent. 

Ready to set off for Plage Blanche. Again!

Making our way to Plage Blanche.

And here it is! Plage Blanche...

... and Moroccan holiday makers with their homemade tents right on the beach.                                           

Last time we weren't able to drive past this point. We just couldn't find our way to the beach. This time we had no trouble finding it and here we are finally driving along Plage Blanche. The plan was to drive to the other end of the beach, then drive into dunes and wild camp there. 

Home sweet home... Right on the beach.

On one side the Atlantic Ocean, on the other - dunes, the middle - full of rubbish.

Let's have a go at driving in the dunes! We already tried it once, last year. Ooops! We're bogged! Up to the chassis! So what now? Let's lower the tyre pressure for a start.

The tyre pressure lowered but as you can see it didn't help much.Now we are really stuck!

Right, we have a new piece of equipment: a ground anchor. Tine to test it.

Now goes the winch.

Whilst we were trying to get the car out of the sand, the kids were having lots of fun.

The question is: are above the tide line or not? I don't think we really want to find out whilst being stuck on the beach. Time to employ more resources. 

The anchor is in, the winch is ready so puuull! And nothing. This beach seems to have rock underneath the sand so the ground anchor couldn't get deep enough to actually work. And what now?

The kids are still enjoying themselves...

... whilst we are still digging the car out.

The wheels are out of the sand. In shortage of traction boards (somehow got lost) Micky's and Beany's mattresses will have to suffice. 

Four hours, two ruined mattresses and eyes, ears and pockets full of sand later we were out! What a relief! 

Hard work made some hungry.

Packing up before the high tide could reach us. We weren't that keen on the idea of camping in the dunes any more. 

The view of our car from the water line.

That looks familiar. Aha, it is the same oued we got stuck in last year! Now this time there is no water in it and it looks pretty dry. However, as usual Aaron decided to check whether it was safe to drive into it. The fisherman village on top of the cliff is the very same one where we had our lunch after having been rescued by a couple of fisherman.

This is the very same river in December last year.

Out of the beach and oued, on the cliffs above the ocean. It was time for a shower and dinner. Both well deserved. 

On the 'road' again the following morning.

The kasbah where we stayed last time as well.

The entrance to Tan Tan - the end of our route. We were very pleased to complete it this time. The adventure on the beach was fun but also gave us a bit of confidence that we are able to get ourselves out of trouble. I don't think I'd like to test our survival skills again any time soon. One adventure per one trip is the correct ratio for me. 

2 August - 9 August 2015

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