Dramatic sunrise in Morocco


The guidebooks say that when visiting Morocco, you should spend a night in Marzouga so as to witness the sunrise the next day. You could do that via camel or Land Rover, and on a trip my daughter Heather and I took one July, we decided to use camels.

Before dawn, we were awakened and led out to where a camel driver and camels awaited. Our guide, Hamid, accompanied us, walking with the driver.

We rode for about 45 minutes among the dunes until finally we dismounted and walked up a particularly high one, part of a ridge of high dunes. We began to notice many other people gathering, many of them locals. Apparently, this is a common endeavor whenever the sky is clear, and on this day the sky was crystal clear with not a hint of wind (unlike the day before).

The sunrise is particularly dramatic because of the sun on the sand. Whether rising or setting, the sun is mostly red, the limitless sand is brownish or reddish, and the combination, with the sun illuminating the sand, is arresting. Cameras hardly do it justice.

The guidebooks are right: a morning sunrise on the desert is worth the effort to see it.

GENE McPHERSON
Sturgis, SD