Atlas Mountains (Morocco)
The Eighth part of our journey starts in the Atlas Mountains, in Morocco. The Atlas Mountain range is the tallest in North Africa, the largest of which, Toubkal, is 4,167m high. The traditional Berber people have occupied the high Atlas for thousands of years.
The Atlas mountain system takes the shape of an extended oblong, enclosing within its ranges a vast complex of plains and plateaus.
The northern section is formed by the Tell Atlas which receives enough rainfall to bear fine forests. From west to east several massifs (mountainous masses) occur. The first of these is Er- Rif, which forms a half-moon-shaped arc in Morocco between Ceuta and Melilla; its crest line exceeds 5,000 feet (1,500 metres) above sea level at several points, reaching 8,058 feet at Mount Tidirhine. East of the gap formed by the Moulouya River the Algerian ranges begin, among which the rugged Bastion of the Ouarsenis Massif (which reaches a height of 6,512 feet), the Great Kabylie, which reaches 7,572 feet at the peak of Lalla Khadijya, and the mountains of Kroumirie in Tunisia are all prominent. The southern section, which is subject to desert influences, is appropriately called the Saharan Atlas. It includes in the centre a palisade formed by shorter ranges, such as the Ksour and Ouled-Naïl mountains, grouped into massifs between two mighty ranges—the Moroccan High Atlas to the west and the Aures Mountains to the east
Next, we travel East for 1401km, into the Sahara desert in Algeria.