Copper Canyon - Tarahumara Trek Print
Monday, 28 January 2008 01:03

Copper Canyon / Tarahumara Trek

Barranca del Cobre, Mexico

One spectacular trip! Travel back into time, to the splendor of Nature as we explore the Sierra Madre Mts.

14 Day Trip Rated 2 ½.


The day before we depart is spent in Douglas, Az (the specific location to be announced) here we will meet and cover last minute information. The adventure includes the lodging as most people will be arriving from different directions and times. This adventure leaves from the town of Douglas, AZ. at the Mexican Immigration office, first building over the border. The departure time to get the paper work at the border done is 9:00 AM. (mountain time zone). I generally get to Douglas early and get the paperwork out of the way. If you get there early contact me by my cell phone # 760-415-7071 and we will get this done. Our days will try to follow this itinerary. After crossing at the border, we will use pavement to our first stop, explore the ruins of Parquime at the Casas Grandes. You will enjoy the peoples hospitality in Mata Ortiz. We will travel to the exceptional “Valley of Caves” for a fascinating experience in the caves. We will journey the un-mapped routes through the Sierra Madre mountains crossing back and forth over the continental divide. You will pass natural rock arches and cliff dwellings along the route. The route will end up at a nice logging town for the night. Morning brings us to another crossing the divide and fantastic cliff dwellings. One cave with dwellings in it has a waterfall in front of it. If this is not enough excitement for the day we will camp at the hot water springs for the evening. The morning brings us to the pavement for some highway driving to reach our next stop at the forth highest waterfall in North America, "Basaseachic Falls (almost 1,000 ft. drop). This is the start of the Barrancas del Cobre that make up the area called Copper Canyon. We find the dirt again taking us to the town of San Juanito and Creel for two nights in lodging. We will have a rest day from the traveling schedule we have been doing. A day to do shopping for Tarahumara gifts and local sight seeing. After a warn breakfast it is into our first of many hair-raising drives from the mountain plateaus into one of our first descents into one of the many major canyons. It was silver that first brought Spaniards to this area and the mining. With the Spanish they brought their religion, so we will visit the Lost Cathedral at Satevo in this narrow canyon. The only way out is up and we will go up and down for the next 225 miles. We will travel further into the remote lands of the Tarahumara. Our travels will take us through Bahuichivo, Batopilas, Cerocahi, Chinipas Temoris, Urique and eventually to the rolling hills and ranchos. There is almost no tourist shopping in this towns, just "Beauty". Each of these town have a story to tell of their reason for being, and we will relish in the flavor of each. The days we spend in the Barrancas of the Sierra Madera Mts. will give you a better understanding of the Tarahumara Indians and life. We will eventually will make the civilized town of Alamos. A nice hotel and a shower and a special drink to celebrate the crossing of the Sierra Madre. We can relax and take in the local sights or shop, or have time to ourselves pondering all we have done. The village of Alamos is just like being transported back 300 years into Spain. Alas we will take the pavement back to the states crossing at Nogales, AZ.. You will make the memories of this trip a special place in our hearts for as long as you live. It will be hard to remember all we saw an did so bring plenty of film to refresh those memories.

Our adventure will have about nine nights in lodging. The remaining are camping out some are in campgrounds and others in exceptional locations.

Important Notes

Vehicle Equipment: Any stock or slightly modified vehicle with a transfer case (no rock crawlers). A vehicle that can maintain highway speeds of 65 MPH, C.B. Radio, 2 Extra 5 Gal. empty gas cans (we will let you know when to fill them), good spare tire, 2 Gallons of drinking water per person, extra oils, cameras, film, and spare batteries, binoculars, camping gear with food, snacks, and drinks. A complete servicing of your vehicle prior to departing prevents most problems. Use your camping and off- road check list sent after we get your deposit. Important is a spare fuel filter, check before you leave as some newer vehicles are a dealer item, only also learn how to change it. You will have to get Mexican Insurance as our U.S. companies are not recognized in Mexico. You can buy your Mexican Insurance on line at if you have not already done so.

Weather - We are going at the best time of the year, but we can not control Mother Nature. This adventure covers areas from sea level to over 8,000 ft and from possible freezing to possible 100 degrees in temperature bring clothing for all extremes. It is better to have it and not use it then to need it and not have it. We are going at the best time of the year, but we can not control Mother Nature.

Fording rivers - This remote adventure will have us fording rivers as there are No Bridges. This is one of the determining factors as to when we go on this adventure. We have had to take long detours when we could not cross the rivers, you can not guarantee what Mother Nature will do and when. As a rule the water crossings are less then 18" deep and from 100" to 300" wide.

To enter and return from Mexico -You will need to have for your vehicle and yourself to enter mainland Mexico: Passport, registration to your vehicle(s). If you do not own the vehicle outright, a notarized letter from your Legal Owner to state that they have given you permission to take the vehicle to Mexico for the specified period of the adventure.. The Visa and temporary Vehicle Importation permit have approximate $40.oo charge to be paid only by Credit Card. You will need two photocopies of your Proof of Citizenship, Drivers License, and Vehicle Title. This cost about $1.oo at the border.

Personal items - Be sure and bring any medications in the prescription bottle. Some prescriptions can only be prescribed by Physicians and you do not want to be caught with controlled drugs with out a prescription. If you wear glasses or contact lenses bring spares and cleaning items. Though most items are available in the larger cities, small towns just do not have them. Laundry service is very limited, so plan on some hand washing some items or bring enough for the fourteen days. With markets being different than here plan on some differences, it is fun.

The trip includes cost of all rooms and camping fees .Eight meals are also included also. No adult beverages are included. The cost of this adventure is for one or two persons per vehicle, any additional persons are extra as are separate rooms.

Finances - This adventure will be in the remote areas of Mexico. The use of Credit Cards or Travelers Checks can be a problem in some locations. Even the use of Greenbacks can be a problem and it is best to use the Pesos. This can be taken care of ahead of time through most banks or at Money Exchanges in the U.S. or Mexico. This is a good time to buy a "Safe", fake soda can or gas cap or other container to hide extra moneys check with a locksmith. We have never had a problem, but it is just better to be safe. We will have a opportunity to use a ATM machine at a week into the adventure and at about day 13.

You should be sure and bring enough cash to cover all of your expenses, plus some extra as a cushion. The guide of expenses you will incur are listed below. From border to border expense guide - your exact expenses may vary from one half to double depending on your taste. This is a average of what most clients spend per vehicle with two people.

Fuel & oil - $250
Toll roads - $30 with a trailer $45
Souvenirs - $200
Insurance - $90 to $145
Restaurants and tips - $100 to $150
Additional food & water - $25 to $75
Ice - $20

This is our planned itinerary and is subject to change do to: weather or any unforeseen conditions. Western Adventures hopes this will be one adventure you will always cherish. I hope to see you on an adventure real soon.

Last Updated ( Saturday, 02 January 2010 09:58 )