Morocco 2015. Round trip.

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Robert OB 33/48

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Hello Folks,

Well, almost time to go. Just a few weeks till the 8th of October and then we go for a 4 week trip to Morocco.
We planned the following route to Morocco;
1. Westervoort/Arnhem, the Netherlands.
2. Germany till the border of France at Mulhouse.
3. France.
4. Spain.
5. The ferry to Morocco.
Whe leave on the thursday and we hope we have the ferry on the sunday at Algeciras. Then we cross into Ceuta and from there the trip into Morocco begins.
Roughly the route will go like this;
1. Ceuta
2. Chefchouen
3. Meknes
4. Fez
5. Midelt
6. Er Rachidia
7. Quarzazate
8. Marrakesh
9. Casablanca
10. Rabat
11. Ceuta.
If we would drive the way we wrote here, we would have just under 2000 km in Morocco. But I guess, we will find d-tours.

The Plan is that we will go with two cars. One Volkswagen T5 4motion and mine Volkswagen T3 2WD.
As you all know about mine, I just can tell you it is now being prepped to the fulless.
We had new springs and shocks, new tyres, new spare tyres, all kind of equipment. and now we are busy with making our first aid kit new for this trip. Needles, bandages, that kind if stuff.
It is a long and hard journey, about 8000 km or more. And I think around 1500 km on non tarmac. And that will definitly take a toll to the cars.
So, I will bring the trailer, and we will have plenty of tools and spare parts.

The next weeks we have two smaller trips before we go. But during the weeks we are prepping the big tour every day.
So, I will try and report about our progress and what we do. And then, when we are on our way, if I have Wifi, I will try to report here.
I also will put up reports on our Facebook page, so I hope that if it doesnt work here, you will be able to see some glimps on FB and Instagramm.

Greetings from Robert
 
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Steve

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Have a fantastic adventure, Robert! I look forward to reading about your experiences, and seeing some amazing photographs. I'm already following you on Instagram, so I'll be able to keep up to date there while I'm on our adventures.

Be safe!
Steve
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Hello folks,

Two weeks from now, we are off to Morocco. And I hope it will be an epic journey. For the first time we will drive into Africa. As we already visit Egypt twice, we were on the the African continent already, but this time it wont be the same.
So, we have to make loads of preparations. Most of them I wrote down in my DIY project thread. So I will leave it there.
But there are preparations, that are just for that specific trip.
So, today I start packing the Van with some spare parts and tools.
I took the rear seat out, made it more assesable and put the old shocks and new (brand new) drive shafts underneath it. Nicely wrapped in cloth.
Then the rear seat back and we have important spar parts stuffed away in a very nice way.
Tomorrow we will go to Germany, getting dog food, treats and such. But also we will visit a motorbike store which has very nice waterproof bags. They will be on the Trailer in the luggage rack.
We have three, and they will store extra clothing, the dog food and such things.
We have already some dried food meals which we will take with us. Just for the moments we are lost, cant find good food and still need a bite.
On the sunday, we will try to make an inventory of all the spare parts we carry. Then we know what we still need. I think some bolts and nuts will find their way into the van.
The same day, we will start to pack the trailer. Make all things we need fit in there.
A toilet tent we bought lately. This because in the desert it is a pretty darn distance to walk so nobody will see you doing a dump. And so we dont have to walk that far.

One of the most important things we needed this holiday is a GPS collar for our dog. World wide we can follow his trail. We will buy some pre-paid sim cards for our phones and thoughbook. And that way, even if it is just not going to happen, we will be able to find him back.
Yesterday a paper map came in, one of two we ordered, and now we can have a real good view overall what we are going to do. 1 cm : 800.000 cm. So not as precize as I like, but good enough.
We made a plan how we will drive and see the things we like to see. And we have 4 days spare so when we like things more, or just get stuck somewhere, we dont have to panic right away.
All kind of insurance things are settled, health insurance, travel insurance. And more.
We also gathered much information about a first aid kit. Thank you folks for your input here. And we are ordering some special things this week. So next week we can make our First Aid kit ready.

Well that is it for the moment. More will definitly come.

Greetings from Robert
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Hello you all,

While some of us are at the rally, and others couldnt go. I was today busy with shopping. We went just across the border to a Motorcycle tool, clothing and equipment shop. And we bought there two 40liter waterproof bags.


These we will fill up and the will be on the trailer in the luggage rack. Containing dog food and clothing. We now have three of these, so plenty of storage there.
So again a simple point is taken of the list.
Just a few points are left on the list and they will be done this week.

Today the second paper map came in and now I can start working on the route and have some real overview how and where we gonna go. We do have all the means to drive and find our way, but now we have the means to see in perspective were we are driving.
It sure will be a fun thing to drive with a combination of paper map, digital map, GPS and coordinates provided by books.
And, I think, I will find nice roads, tracks anyway and d-tours are our speciality.

The countdown is starting . Today, the 2 week notice is startet. Just 13 days before departure.
I can hardly wait. But first we will have a long weekend with some German guests who we will show Holland.

Good, still, more to come.

Greetings from Robert
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Hello,

Today it was trailer packing time. The trailer changed from simple weekend mode into the long distance mode.
So, we have in the trailer now. 75 ltr of Fuel. 50 ltr of Water ( drinkable water )
Our chairs, table, ktichen stuff, Cobb, Toilet, toilet tent, shower warm water bags, waterpump, and tent poles.




We packed it in layers, so when we unpack it, we can take what we need first. Table, the chairs and the kitchen.
On the trailer in the luggage rack we have a little BBQ and a bag full of dog food.

And there is in and on the trailer still room for other things.

We already packed some stuff into the van. But we cant do everything already, as we have to enjoy another weekend away before the holidays.
But I think most is done.
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Hello, Yesterday evening I had a conversation with Torsten about recovery and he told me, he would bring just a standard jack with him. This because a High Lift wouldnt have any point to hold on to a T5 to lift. And his High Lift is a cheap rip off, so he didnt trust it much. Also he said, to change a tyre, it would do just fine. I agreed on that. But during a recovery situation, it just wouldnt.
That is why I offered him to make a tool to use the High Lift on his car as well.
So this afternoon I started to make that tool. And it is almost finished.
Tomorrow I will finish it.




Greetings from Robert
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Ok, this is not for the trailer or my Van. As we are going with two cars, mine a VW T#/Vanagon and a VW T5, we talked about recovery with the High Lift.
And the T5 doesnt have side bars or front and rear steel bumpers. So, no jack points except the original ones. And for that the High Lift isnt good.
So, I made this extension to provide enough space to use the original jack points.
Today I will make a claw that will fit in the standard jack points and "lock" the extension to the car. This will provide the means to jack up the T5 with a High Lift.
Pictures will follow.

Greetings from Robert
 

Robert OB 33/48

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As promised, the pictures of the finished product.


I hope it will work. His car is in Germany, so I will know it when we meet in Spain and test it in Morocco.

Greetings from Robert
 

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That makes sense to me now. Nice work-around for a problem that many vehicles have - a good jacking point for a Hi-Lift.
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Unfortunally it didnt work. The leaver forces were to high and I have to repalce it. Will discuss this in Morocco and then after Morocco I will make it right.

Well anyway. The last two days before we depart are there. We had a great weekend driving around Holland and that was epic. Wonderful weather and good company.
So, now it is all preparing for our 4 week trip to Morocco.
Today I rechecked the vans ignition and it seems to be ok now. We will test it this afternoon.
Then I packed it with all gear and tools. And started to mount all sandladders and such on the Van.
So slowly it is looking like the long distance Expedition vehicle what it should be.

I think I will be done tomorrow. And then I need to wait for 28 hours or so before we depart.

Greetings from Robert
 

Robert OB 33/48

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And again as so many times, it comes always different.
I thought that I would take my new starter engine with me on the trip as a spare. But, nope. Will change my starter engine tomorrow and will take the old one with me as a spare.
We have some trouble with the old one, so the new one is going to be the solution.
Unfortunally, to do so, I need to dismount the difflock switch, as that is in front of the Starter engine. That will take me several hours. I hope just two, but I think more.
We will see.

Anyway, the plan is to leave on thursday at 18:00 hours and drive at least untill we passed Paris.
The friday we hope to be in Spain. And the Saturday we should arrive at Algericas to catch the ferry.
Sunday morning we will have the ferry and then we are in Morocco.

Greetings from Robert
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Ok, changed the starter motor. Which isnt a easy job, as the mechanism for the difflock has to be out of the way as well. But it is done.
Tomorrow the last things to do and then its 18:00 hours departure.

And this is roughly our route through Morocco


Think we will have a different one when we are back home.

Good tomorrow the last message before I will go on my way.

Greetings from Robert
 
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Robert OB 33/48

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Hello Folks,
just a quick update from Morocco.We are at Chefchouen with one day delay. During the trip through spain my water pump broke down, but luckely I brought a spare one. So with the help of my friend Torsten we manage to do a roadside repair within 3.5 hours. this due a very stubborn bolt. Unfortunally that took away our time shedule, so we desided, as we are on holidays, we take it easy and arrive one day later in morocco. So yesterda in the morning we aarived at the ferry and embarked to Morocco. Customs took just one hour an of we went to Chefchouen. We arrived there aroun three and made camp.
This morning after a good night sleep and a great evening of talks I checked the water, oil and brakes. All ok, so tomorrow we can do the second part of our trip. And hopefully the first pistes.
Here some pictures.



Roadside repair. making good bonding

Skai wants to be the navigator.


The ladies at the ferry ticket office. I can recommend this one, they are cheap, about 150 € cheaper.

At last we arrived at the ferry

Basecamp at Chefchouen

And planning our trip for wednessday.
Today we will visit Chefchouen and have a day of rest.

More to come.
 
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I like hearing that you planned a day of rest! I think it's important on extended journeys! Thanks for sharing the awesome photos! I like your copilot at the computer!
 

Robert OB 33/48

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Hello, At this moment we are stuck in Beni Mellal. Our van broke down with a broken clutch on a piste which was way to heavy. Even the people who helped us with their Unimog Overland vehicle had serious doubt and feared the situation. This because we drove in a riverbedding and it started to rain and thunder. They towed us to Imilchil for more then 90 km. Thanks Adreas and Ursula. Your the best.
We are now on our own, as Torsten and Helga went on with their holidays as they couldnt do anything except for holding our hands.
Yesterday we had a 6 hour drive on top of a flatbed truck to Beni Mellal. Frederique was sitting in the cabin with the driver. He smoked, watch facebook while driving through the mountains and filmed several passages which were interesting.
Now it is waiting for some company which probarly can help us with our van.
Our friends Emma and Jarrod already offered to send us the parts. We will keep this in mind.
If we have contact with the new company we maybe be able to continue our holiday. Hope is shining a bit brighter today.

For so far from Beni Mellal at Morocco.
 
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