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A series of links to my various locations visited February 2019 1. Ifrane http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93193-ifrane-middle-atlas-morocco/ne 2. Azrou http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93256-azrou-middle-atlas-morocco/ 3. Midelt http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93271-midelt-high-plains-morocco/ 4. Tizi N'Talghaumt http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93325-tizi-ntalghaumt-pass-high-atlas-morocco/ 5 Merzouga .http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93362-merzouga-sahara-morocco/ 6. Erfoud location http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93407-black-sahara-erfoud-morocco/ 7. Erfoud shops http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/93823-fossil-shops-erfoud-morocco/ 8. Ait Ben Haddou http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/94222-ait-benhaddou-sub-sahara-morocco/ 9. Tizi n'Tichka http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/94803-tizi-ntichka-pass-high-atlas-morocco/ 10 Marrakech. I didn't get any photos of the fossils for sale in Marrakech. The Marrakech area doesn't produce any fossils itself, or at least not of any commercial value so all the fossils are brought in from elsewhere in the country. There are some beautiful specimens but also many composites and out and out fakes. Top Tip : Don't but any fossils in Marrakech unless you are very wealthy, can't resist a specimen whatever the price or aren't visiting anywhere else. Marrakech is the tourist capital of Morocco, home to the rich and famous and prices reflect this even after a good haggle, especially as the fossils aren't local so transportation costs and middle men are usually involved. Everywhere else is cheaper than Marrakech in my experience so i have never purchased a fossil there. But as I say, there are excellent pieces and some honest traders as well, so it's up to you, of course.
Day One ; Locality Five Sahara Desert 19th February 2019 An advert for Erfoud, the fossil capital of Morocco. But no time today, the sun is setting. "Tomorrow", Anouar promises me. And then suddenly we are out of the mountains and on the fringes of the mighty Sahara Desert, the largest hot desert in the world. (Antarctica and the Arctic are bigger, but cold deserts) Many think of the Sahara as being sand, but actually, only a fraction of it is composed of the ergs (sand and sand dunes), most of the desert is hamada - rock desert. It is often fossiliferous. In the west, around Agadir, it is often yellow and contains Cretaceous fossils such as ammonites, south of there, the whitish yellow rocks of the Palaeogene where whale fossils can be found in the desert, but in the east, such as here, the rocks are often grey or black , hence the term, "Black Sahara". They range in age from the Precambrian stromatolite reefs near Ouarzazate through to some Lower Carboniferous patches North of Merzouga near Erfoud. Here in Merzouga they are mostly Devonian in age. Also nodules and geodes containing crystals and desert roses and other strange geological features may be found. And those aren't mountains in the distance, those are sand dunes. The dunes of the mighty Erg Chebbi up to 150 metres high. But no time for collecting today. The sun was setting and it was time for dinner and a sleep. We were going to stay in a Berber desert nomad tent, but they're mostly a bit touristy and some have been forcibly shut down since i was there, but the temperature was going to be only i degree above freezing tonight, so, no thank you very much, a hotel it shall be.