A group of eight Madeirans belonging to the Madeira Lés a Lés group, which weekly travels through the mountains of Madeira along their lesser explored paths, headed to Morocco to fulfill the objective of walking the path that took them to the top of the highest mountain in the range, of the Atlas in North Africa.
This peak, called Jbel Toubkal, is located southwest of Morocco, 63 kilometers south of Marrakech, and has an altitude of 4,167 meters.
Initially scheduled for August, when the ascent to the top would be less demanding, this “odyssey” has only now taken place. The hikers, most of them from the municipality of Machico, first made a seven-hour journey to the so-called Refúgio (3,207 meters high), encountering “dozens of mules loaded with mountain material” along the way, as well as several people who carried out the trek. same route, says Ivo Nunes, one of the members of this entourage.
The hiker reports that, after a stop at the Refúgio, it was from there that this adventure became truly challenging: “At 4 am, we started the climb [to the summit]. At 3,700 meters, Ibraim, our guide, told me that from there it would get colder and steeper, and so it did. The temperature dropped a lot, it became difficult to breathe, I felt pain in the extremes of the body.”
Conditions became more and more aggressive, with the thermometers hitting minus ten degrees. “I felt my nose getting cold and my lips too”, adds the member of Madeira Lés a Lés who, when he reached the end, was proud of the achievement.
Ivo Nunes shares that despite all the obstacles felt along this climb, the idea was always in his mind that it would be possible to reach the end. And it was, “I suffered, but I made it,” he said.