Hi Brandon & Steve,
I’m a long-time reader and now I’m very happy to send in my first submission to your great site! I really enjoy visiting daily to find a mix of excellent photos, inspiring stories and interesting gear talk!
In January this year myself and an old friend travelled (me from Dublin and my friend from Berlin) to Marrakech, Morocco and drove just over 60km south to the High Atlas mountains to tackle the highest mountain in North Africa, Jebel Toubkal. So far so good, the journey was an easy one thanks to low-cost airlines and the internet helped us plan everything. The High Atlas mountains are relatively accessible, being so close to Marrakech, and Marrakech is a popular tourist destination with tonnes of flights in and out. In terms of gear, we were carrying heavy backpacks and I wanted to bring the least extra weight in cameras whilst still coming home with some nice images. I carried my Panasonic GX7, Olympus 9mm fisheye body cap lens, Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 pancake and Olympus 45mm f/1.8 in an Olympus PEN Street Case M. This gave a good range and the opportunity for some fun shots, in a very light, tough and easy to carry package. The 1/8000s fastest shutter speed was very useful for dealing with bright snow scenes.
The hike was over two days, setting off very early in the morning each day and finishing in the afternoon well before dusk settled. We didn’t take a guide. The going was very difficult through snow and the altitude made it tougher (we started at Imlil at 1,740 metres (5,710 ft) and the summit was 4,167 metres (13,671 ft)). I think it might be the hardest thing I’ve ever done but was very much worth it!!
All pictures are taken in RAW with Panasonic GX7 and processed in Aperture. Our sustenance for the first day and then the view back down the mountain towards Spain on the morning of the second day were shot with the 20mm, while the group at the summit and the view from the summit towards the Sahara desert were shot with the 9mm fisheye.
My Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ciarancreilly/
My Instagram: https://instagram.com/ciaranr/