Project Horizon // Into the Atlas
From Marrakech to Agadir by bike. On gravel roads, sand and single tracks through the remote landscape of the Atlas Mountains. 1,167 kilometers and 23,000 meters of altitude – in a maximum of seven days. That's the Atlas Mountain Race, one of the toughest unsupported gravel bikepacking events in the world.
At the last edition of the race in February 2020, 192 riders from all over the world took to the starting line. Many of them traveled to Marrakesh solely for the race. Not so former professional cyclist Nico Keinath and his friend Nils Laengner, who accompanied the race as official photographer.
Embracing two continents
Because they wanted to experience more than just the epic race. They wanted to meet locals and immerse themselves in the foreign culture with all their senses. Something that is not really possible given the immense exertion during the race itself. This is why the two decided to cycle from Lisbon to the starting point in Marrakech: a tour of about 1,800 kilometers. The route first led them through the beautiful southern part of the Iberian Peninsula to the southernmost tip of Spain where they took a ferry to Morocco. From Tangier, they cycled the remaining 1,000 kilometers to Marrakech.
Their tour took Nils and Nico to their physical and mental limits and above. But they were rewarded with beautiful natural spectacles, extremely diverse landscapes, and encounters with incredibly friendly people. They saw a lot of bizarre things, experienced chaotic traffic condition, and met one or the other wild animal. Two weeks full of unique moments let them discover themselves anew. We are happy that the two captured some of those moments for us.