Lahouceine was our local guide for a recent KE adventure trip to Jbel Toubkal and Ras and Timesguida peaks this December 2012. We (my wife and I) have been planning this trip for a while and weren't disappointed by the excellent service and guidance we received from Lahouceine. We are novice winter mountaineers, so hired crampons and ice axes through KW: good quality Grivel 12 points and Petzl axes.
The trip itself was superb. Fantastic food cooked by the local chef who trekked up to the refuge with us (omelettes every morning, a variety of tagines at night: all food brought up by mules to 3200m - what's not to like?), stunning weather, 3 summits (at least I did), and extremely well paced hiking. One of Lahouceine's strengths is his ability to gauge fitness and adjust pace appropriately. My wife and another companion are not the triathlete/marathon/Body Pump instructor type, so our pace up Jbel Toubkal (4167m) was completely appropriate, which meant everyone summited without exhaustion. The following day, I summited Ras (4089m) and Timesguida (4086m) at a much quicker pace, again without succumbing to exhaustion, whilst my wife and our other companion had a relative rest day.
Lahouceine was also good at spotting emotions and reassuring those in our group who were unsure of their crampon abilities/risk of slipping on the ice (we were practicing self arrests)/chances of making it up the mountain. Not everyone is able to pick up on the subtleties of emotional stress.
In short, we had a fantastic trip: informative, safe and enjoyable. We'll be back.
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