A weekend photography adventure in the Atlas Mountains, Morocco

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This weekend, I took two enthusiastic photographers on a short three day expedition to Morocco, one of my favourite countries in the world, less than four hours from London. The purpose of the trip was to develop Jake and Anna’s photography skills while trekking In the snow covered Atlas Mountains.

The adventure began on Friday afternoon when Jake and Anna caught their flight from London to Marrakech.  We headed straight for the bustling streets of the Medina, enjoying a delicious meal in the unforgettable Djemaa el-Fna before returning to the shops to haggle for bargains.

DSC_6330Dinner served with a smile at No1 in Djemaa el-Fna

Early on Saturday morning, we left our hotel and drove into the mountains. We arrived in time for a breakfast at sunrise, sitting by an open fire overlooking the stunning Atlas mountains. After breakfast, I gave an hour long photography tutorial and a short briefing on the day. Then it was time to pick up our cameras and backpacks and set off into the mountains.

DSC_6343Sunrise across the valley

We eased our way into the walk, taking the time to soak up the sun and the scenery (it made a dramatic change from the February floods we had left behind in London). Within an hour we were walking across glacial morraine and approacing the snowline. As a group, we were alone for most of the morning, meeting just four other trekkers on our route. We stopped regularly to photograph the unfolding view – snow peaked mountains bathed in sunlight, dramatic valleys carved out by glaciers and floods, berber tribespeople and their cattle scattered across the slopes and tiny mountain villages. We kept an eye on the skies for a glimpse of a golden eagle, native to the the area.

DSC_6395Anna shooting in the Atlas Mountains

The following morning, we met for breakfast and were walking on the mountain by 930. We walked in the opposite valley to day one, basking in the sunshine on the South facing slope. We trekked for four and a half hours, taking lunch on the mountain and stopping to take plenty of pictures en route.

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A view from the opposite valley on day 2

By 3.30pm, we were back at our hotel, enjoying a mid afternoon snack. Shortly afterwards, it was time to leave our mountain village and make the two hour journey back to Marrakech for the airport. We arrived with plenty of time to relax and review our pictures over a few refreshments before boarding our return flight to London on Sunday night.Day 2 in the opposite valley

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Taking a break from it all on the roof terrace in the mountains

It is hard to believe our journey was just a little over 48 hours. We had experienced so much in that time – the imposing hustle and energy of the medinas in Marrakesh, the idyllic peace and isolation of the mountains, delicious local food and hospitality, roaring open fires and local wine on a rooftop under the stars. By the end, we each had a beautiful collection of photography to take back with us, and Jake and Anna had successfully honed their photography skills. All of this had been acheived in one long weekend, with Jake and Anna taking one day of holiday from their busy schedules.

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A performer in Djemaa el-Fna

I will be returning to Morocco soon. It is a stunningly diverse and fascinating country to visit. If you would like to join me on my next trip, please do not hesitate to get in touch. I offer bespoke packages* for individuals, couples and groups of up to twelve people. You will receive photography training from me throughout the journey and will return home having experienced a real adventure in a truly exotic part of the world.

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Setting off into the mountains

For more information, please contact me at info@andrewscriven.co.uk

* If you would prefer to stay a little longer in Marrakech to treat yourself to a traditional hammam, a luxury spa or a more indepth shopping experience, this can easily be arranged. Alternatively, if you wish to spend a little longer in the mountains to get away from it all or would prefer to climb a peak, this is all possible.