Our main objective today is the Irhil M’Goun ultra summit. But this is a long hike, and we will be staying overnight in the refuge de Tarkeddite. Before arriving at the refuge, Said and I will take a 2-hour detour to climb bonus p600 peak Aghouri.
In front of the village, there is a large lot (31.61133, -6.48931). We leave the car there, and early in the morning, we walk five kilometres on a wide path next to the river for about an hour until it gets light. A few backpacks are carried by mules, but in my subjective opinion, mules are more needed to support the local economy than to create great benefits for us. Especially since, while slightly more expensive, the hut provides water and other beverages. On Mount Toubkal, Rockinstraw had blisters, so on this hike on less steep paths, he rides on a mule.
We reach an old settlement, turn in the SW direction, and climb the ridge towards the pass on a narrower path. We will have to climb this ridge and then descend several hundred vertical metres to the valley where the refuge is located. I check the map near the pass. Waw.. About two kilometres away, in the SSW direction, there is an unreported peak, Aghouri 3565m P624.
Since it’s not even noon yet, I’m pretty sure what I’m going to do next. But the guide has a completely different opinion. Said is a very good and professional guide, and I think he is doing the right thing by not letting me deviate from the plan, but the thought of sitting in the refuge for the next nine hours and doing nothing is killing me. Beautiful weather with no wind or clouds. I offered to go to the refuge, and then his responsibility as a guide would be over. My free time begins… However, Said decided to accompany me along the top of the ridge to the summit of Aghouri. Thanks, rational, and a friendly solution Rockinstraw on a mule, with muleteers moving closer to the shelter, and Said and I climbing Aghouri.
An easy ridge walk at the beginning. Half a kilometre before the destination, any kind of trail disappears, and we scramble up. Easy and technically simple; however, several steps are quite exposed, and a mistake would be costly. Perhaps going a little lower, on the S side of the ridge, would avoid the exposed steps. First we climb to a false peak, just to see that the highpoint is 120 metres away.
A few minutes later, I see a smiling Said sitting next to the highest rock on the summit. The top is a steep rock, not marked in any way, but with great views all around. The valley we came from, the valley we’re going to, and Irhil M’Goun
On the descent, we go straight down the slope to the refuge and do not return to the pass. Said has walked this way many times. steep gravel slopes with a few animal tracks.
In the refuge, as expected, we find Rockinstraw. Detouring to the bonus peak took a couple of hours. Only 2 p.m. is a long time before nightfall. I’m thinking about another P200-P300 peak nearby. But I no longer pronounce these minds to Said ;). A little rest won’t hurt. A couple hundred metres north of the refuge there is a “social point” with a weak internet signal. I can hear Berber music and dances emerging in the camp near our refuge. We have tea, lunch, and dinner and agree to move on at 2 a.m., towards Irhil M’Goun. Great day and another great unplanted P600 peak; at the time of the climb, no one reported it.