Copper Canyon (slower pace), Mexico
This is all Motels and NO camping!!
One spectacular Adventure! We explore the canyons of the Sierra Madre Mts. in a slower 18 Day Trip Rated 2½ - 3½
It has taken me years to figure out how to do a trip to Copper Canyon without camping. This is harder then it seems to get from one point to another without needing to camp out. Trying to see the real Barrancas “Copper Canyon” as it should be seen and experienced. This adventure misses none of the wonders that make this the most intriguing adventures anywhere! It is becoming more popular with Americans as it is discovered and the word spreads. See it before the tourist change it from it’s true elegance. You have not experienced life until you have traversed the Sierra Madre’s “Copper Canyon”!
The night before we leave our first night is spent in Douglas, Az (the lodging is included, location to be announced later) here we will meet for a get acquainted dinner and cover last minute information. This adventure includes 18 nights of lodging. This trip leaves from the town of Aqua Prieta, MX. 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 This is a 24 hour Immigration office (See general Information about Mexico as to what you must have). Douglas also has a 24 hour Walmart for anything you may have forgotten.
Our days are semi arranged as to what we will do. Do to weather brake downs or unexpected conditions we may have to make adjustments as we go along.
Our first few days is at the ruins of Parquime and the museum in Casas Grandes. We will find the treasures of a lifetime at Mata Ortiz for three nights and relax in this dirt street village. The hand made pottery is the finest you will find any where in the world.
Our next travels will take us to the “Valley of the Caves”. The easy hikes will take us to some fantastic cave dwellings. We are at this important location in the far northern fingers of the Barrancas that make up ancient Indian territory. We will return to Mata Ortiz for the night.
We will continue traveling into the unmapped areas dirt trails of the Sierra Madre mountains. We stop at additional cave dwellings, natural bridges and arches, with a goal of our motel. We will then relax in the same motel for two nights.
The morning will take us over the mountains to fantastic vistas, natural hot water springs, Indian cliff dwellings, a cave with pueblo style dwellings and a waterfall over the entrance. Morning brings us to some pavement taking us to our next adventure at the Mennonite camps.
The morning brings us winding through the mountains, to a wonderful site of "Basaseachic Falls". The 1,000 foot high waterfall is located a short hike will bring us to the top of the falls.
The cool mountain air awakes us to a remote location for a additional view of the Falls. The road over the many mountains will take us to over 8,750 feet high and views in all directions. We will pass quaking Aspin trees on our route to Creel for two a wonderful nights with some new friends and travelers from all over the world.
We will take the next day for some side trips, a opportunity to do shopping and catching our breath. We will be in the North/East corner of the Tarahumara lands. The direction of this adventure will change again.
The Barrancas del Cobre (Copper Canyon) is calling us to their depths. We will enter and visit some Tarahumara villages on our way into one of the most well known of the canyons. This takes us into this mystical place and the central portions of the Tarahumara Indians lands. The travels will take us to the “Lost Cathedral” of Satevo. We will spend two nights in a extraordinary Hotel along side the river.
Your journey today will be a longer one. This day will again take us through unmapped canyons and mountains to our next destination in another of the canyons. We will have another hair raising drive down into the depths of the canyon. You will have extraordinary vistas, operating mines and remote villages deep in the heart of the Barrancas.
Our days voyages will take us to a quaint mining and logging the town of Bahuichivo with a night in the forest. The church is again the center of the town and is very remarkable. A night with a fire place for heat and a relaxing evening.
The journey will take us into the mountains and canyons for one of the nicest towns in all of Mexico, Chinipas (my favorite). The town where Burros walk on the cobble stone streets and the outside world left behind. The nicest appeal to the town is no tourist. The scenery is just "Spectacular" and always something new just around the corner. Chinipas is slowly getting caught up with the outside world. The money brought in by the mining going on again has transforming this sleepy town into a slightly more fortunate town. We can walk the streets and around the square with the locals as the sun sets.
The morning ringing of the church bells brings us to a long climb over the mountains. We will pass scattered villages and remote Ranchos with roaming cattle. We leave the mighty Sierra Madre mountains behind in out travels. The mountains become hills as we head into the very Spanish style town of Alamos. We will have a opportunity to wander around and see some nicely restored Spanish style community.
This is a day where we can relax and enjoy ourselves or use it as a catch-up day if we got behind along the way earlier on the adventure. We will have a nice hotel, a shower and a special drink to celebrate the crossing of the Sierra Madre and the Barranca del Cobre.
Our day begins in the old Mexico and transforming to the 21st. Century. We head north towards the border by the toll roads. We will cross at Nogales, AZ and take the memories of the people, places, sights and adventures a special place in our hearts.
Important Mexico General Information:
If everything has gone close to what we have planned we should be at the border in the evening of the18th day. Do to the length of this adventure many unplanned things can happen. This may make us skip a part of the adventure or adjust as we go along.. We can add in additional items or skip sections if the group as a whole so decides. A rainstorm in the mountains can cause flooding rivers and delay our crossing of some rivers. This adventure has rivers with no bridges that we must cross. I have tried to schedule of this adventure so we should not have this problem, but I have had this situation occur in the past. These things are all part of the adventure and makes for great stories later.
Fuel; The adventure will be in many very remote locations, You will need to have additional fuel cans is a must. If you do not have any we can provide you with them. Bring only empty cans into Mexico, I will let you know when to fill them.
Food; Fifteen meals are included. We will have locations where we can get additional basic supplies as we go along. Try and limit the weight of your supplies. Bottled water is available along the way. Most stores carry basic foods and not much heat and serve. We will use restaurants along the way. You will need to have a supply of snacks and lunches. Some of our lunches will not be in restaurants, but along side of the road or as we enjoy the views.
Sleeping gear; Plan on additional blankets or sleeping bags as it can be very cold in the mountains and the canyons very warm. Having a extra blanket is a good idea as some lodges have wood fire heating and the heat may go out during the night.
Vehicle; Your vehicle has to have a transfer case. Be able to run at highway speeds. Be in sound mechanical condition (we know unexpected things can and do happen). Be insured with Mexican insurance. Be careful not to overload your vehicle.
Money; We have only a limited locations where we can get additional money or cash money orders, before we cross the border, in Cuauhtemoc, Madera, Creel, Alamos and Hermosillo. I recommend that you only bring one Visa or MasterCard for the trip. Exchange your dollars into pesos before crossing the border. Do not put all of your money in one location.
Your expense guide for this trip might include:
Meals (per person) about $250 ffor those that are not included.
Fuel in Mexico $350
Mexican insurance $100 to 175
Ice and water $30
Toll roads $35
With our over 18 years of traveling to “Copper Canyon” I have collected the best of the area for this special 4X4 adventure. You will have an achievement that few others have accomplished all in this adventure. You will be one of the fortunate ones who have an understanding and a respect for the true “Copper Canyon” experience. You will be in and out of the many Barrancas (canyons) that most tourist may only view from high above. You will travel the plains, mountains, canyons all a part of the heart and soul of this most magnificent area. After this adventure you will be able to tell your friends you found the true Barranca del Cobre and Sierra Tarahumara.
Frenchie La Chance