Sunday, 13 May 2012

SWEL Morocco Trip 2012

Kwjet on 'Mamma Africa' Highline

Just few days ago, after one month in Morocco, the SWEL team came back to Europe. It was an amazing experience for all of us. For Jordan and Janek it was also a reconnection, first with the place where they met 6 years ago, and also with Moha and his family in the guest house in Todra. Over period of 28 days we established 6 new lines (including: 1st highline in Morocco 'Berber Gold' sent FA by Jakub 'Kwjet' Hanuš, 1st highline free-solo and of course longest and highest highline). Besides highlining we occupied our time with climbing, hiking way too much, getting tan, getting sick and experiencing Moroccan food and music. Jordan and Janek climbed in total 24 sport routes up to the grade of 7b+ and 4 multi-pitch routes (1 of them was a solo climb).

Jan bolting the far anchor on the 'Eyes of Fear' Highline

Almost every day was spent accomplishing something, and we definitely didn't have enough rest days.  Everyone got sick, one after the other, and that was really the only time spent resting. Faith was the only person which didn't have to go through it.

Janek sending 'Berber Gold'

Unfortunately we didn't quite make it to Taghia. We had made all the arrangements, spoke to the locals and got the beta on how to get there, and planned to rent mules to make the 2-day hike from the last village into Taghia.  Unfortunately, there was something on the order of 15cm of snow in the mountains, the conditions were horrible, and a german climber had just died trying to open a new route. All in all, the detour cost us 100 Euros, and one day of traveling, and after dinner we were back in Todra. We were very disappointed that this part of our journey was impossible to undertake, but, as always, the weather is something that we cannot control, and of course Moha and Nabir were actually really happy to see us back in the house; 'Todra is the best! Spoko Maroko'

'Berber Gold' from the below ... find Kwjet on the picture

We had the pleasure to work with a new video-maker - 'Kapi Bloga' - a really warm and friendly guy from the Basque country (just don't say that he is Spanish!) and his friend 'Txirrita'. After recovering from his knee injury, Kapi worked very hard the entire trip, and even managed to send 7a+ on his second try - that was awesome to watch. Faith and Kwjet were in the other climbing team sending lots of sport routes and together with Kapi one multi-pitch route on the 'Pillar De Couchant'.

Faith lost in space on the 'Too Much Cous Cous In A Head' Highline

After we returned to Todra, we wasted no time and set up more epic lines in the Gorge. Finding the new lines wasn't easy. A lot of times after 4-6 hours of hiking in a 'killer sun' we arrived at the top, only to find a line that looked incredible from below turn out to be not even worth the hike up there...

Faith on the 'Too Much Cous Cous In A Head' Highline

It's hard to describe everything that happened over such a long period of time so we'll be posting photos and stories from each line separately. Stay tuned for more blogposts, upcoming trailer and full movie from the trip in a few months.

Jan finishing the 'Too Much Cous Cous In A Head' Highline

For now enjoy the list with specs of the lines we've sent in Todra and few shots from Jordan. More galleries coming up soon ('Inshallah', if Jordan's computer will co-operate).

Todra's Sends LIST:
(L - length, H - height, E - exposure)

1) 'Berber Gold' (L: 47m / H: 60m to the notch & 150m to the bottom/ E: 300m),
2) 'Mamma Africa' (L: 49m / H: 70m),
3) 'To Much Cous Cous In A Head' (L: 47m / H: 80m / E: 270m),
4) 'Photos One Dirham!' (L: 17m / H: 60m / E: 270m),
5) 'Very Nice Eyes' (L: 33m / H: 70m / E: 270m),
6) 'Eyes of Fear' (L: 61m / H: 100m / E: 270m).

Jordan and the wild swami exposure turn on the 'Very Nice Eyes' Highline

Last but not least we would like to thank our sponsors Gibbon and Deuter and other supporting brands like Rock Empire, Tendon and HippyTree. Huge thanks goes to Moha's family for hosting us at the 'Hotel Panoramique', Kapi and Txirrita for videotaping, helping and being awesome!

Kwjet being professional ... how to clean the holes without a tube
Jan getting ready for the FA on the 'Eyes of Fear' Highline (OS&FM)

Peace & SlackOn

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