Where we’re going we don’t need roads…

Posted by on 22, Apr 2015 in 2015 - Iberia and Morocco, Morocco, North Africa, Taffy

Where we’re going we don’t need roads…

The roads here have been, generally speaking, excellent. The trip from Colchester to Harwich is on a far worse road than most of the back roads here, but today we’ve driven from Zagora up to the Saffron Capital of Morocco on what remains of a road after the winter floods have ripped away half the surrounding countryside.  

The road followed the river up a valley for 50kms passing tiny villages nestled in clusters of palm trees and fields.‎ The road had been completely erased by the flooding and every bridge across the winding river had been washed away.   These aren’t bridges in the normal sense, they are slightly raised concrete platforms that allow water to flow under and over them turning into a ford at wet times. They are heavy, have enormous under pinning and look like you’d need a team of Royal Engineers to make a dent in them but in places they were simply missing in action. Palm trees were wedged under some of the remains in places and teams of diggers and hand labour were slowly repairing the winters damage.

Away from the bridges the sides of the valley where the road clung had been erased completely and the old tarmac road vanished into thin air to what now is river bed. The workmen just blasted the side of the mountain off and were busy sticking a new road onto the side of the mountain but none of this stretch was yet tarmac, just piles of pitted track, miles and miles of shingle which felt like driving on a beach and plenty of corrugated compacted sand which bounced us up and down for ages, great for mixing Martinis for James Bond, but not so good for drinking them.  It took us 2 hours to cover this stretch but the scenery was wonderful and it was hard to believe that a valley that was almost bone dry could turn into a raging torrent 200m wide capable of ripping away the roads.  

We arrived at the Moroccan equivalent of  Saffron Walden late afternoon (honestly it is!) and came to our first camp site with other Motorhomes on. Perhaps we’re now back on the tourist trail?  ‎

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