Chihuahua Journals

Mexico's Copper Canyon

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A February 1998 trip to Chihuahua by Shauna

Western Side of Sierra Madres Photo, Chihuahua, Mexico More Photos
Quote: The Copper Canyon is growing in popularity, and becoming more developed, but is still an absolutely amazing natural and cultural wonder, comparable to the stunning Grand Canyon in the United States. A thrilling train ride through the area is an amazing way to experience the terrain of the Sierra Madres.

Mexico's Copper Canyon

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Overview

Urique Canyon Photo, Chihuahua, Mexico
Quote:
The train trip (that is clearly a feat of engineering and human labor!) is by far the highlight of the trip, but don't hestistate to get on and off the train as often as you like and explore the areas by foot or bike. It's possible to make the spectacular route in a day if you direly need to get from Los Mochis to Chihuahua, but take your time if you can. The memorable moments are innumerable. Your jaw will be hanging open for hours on the train ride. Several publications on the are offer mile-by-mile descriptions of the route, explaining little-known facts about the construction, flora/fauna, etc. And, as much as I liked travelling independently, it was nice to be able to "eavesdrop" on tour g...Read More
Quote:
An amazing colonial hotel, complete with gardens, pools, fountains, courtyards and rustic furnishings, it''s a great place to start your trip. It''s east of Los Mochis, where most people will arrive via plane, though most people choose to start their journey into the Copper Canyon here. Meals are absolutely spectacular, and watch your step carefully after enjoying a deliciously strong margarita on the patio. Several rooms are available in the front part of the hotel, with massive carved wood doors and traditional spanish colonial decor, while others are more secluded off the courtyard, hidden behind flowering bushes and with hammocks on the front steps. There''s even a bar/nightclub below the hot...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 18, 2001

Hotel Posada del Hidalgo
Ei Fuerte, Sinaloa
Chihuahua, Mexico

Hotel Mision

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Hotel

Hotel Mision Photo, Chihuahua, Mexico
Quote:
By getting off the train at the Bahuichivo station, you can get to Cerocahui, a quiet agricultural town near the edge of the canyon. The Hotel Mision gets it''s name from it''s beautiful mission church next door. It''s a bumpy 1/2 hour ride on a mini-bus that meets you at the train station, but this hotel is worth the effort to get to. Rooms are rustic and minimal, set around a courtyard - all meals are included during the stay, and are spectacular! Margaritas are served up at happy hour in the lobby/dining room, where you can get a chance to meet other guests and exchange travel stories - half the people have probably come from where you''re headed to next, so it''s worth striking up a con...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 20, 2001

Hotel Mision
8 miles from train station by bus
Chihuahua, Mexico

Quote:
Creel is mountain biking mecca of Northern Mexico, and it's understandable why once you start riding around. We rode through some fields to Valley of the Monks (on a great map provided by Arturo), which was amazing, and quite an easy trail - most parts are on dirt roads, then across some grassy fields. You can drop your bikes and scramble up the rocks for some amazing views of the stone formations in the valley.

One word of warning - you're up at fairly high altitude to start with, so pace yourself, if you're not used to althetic endeavors at high altitude and less oxygen.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 18, 2001

Valley of the Monks in Creel Area
near Posada Creel
Chihuahua, Mexico

Chihuahua al Pacfico Train Travel

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Story/Tip

Marvels of engineering - switchbacks Photo, Chihuahua, Mexico
Quote:
This is by far one of the greatest ways to see the canyon area (and until a few years ago when a through-road was completed, the ONLY way to get through the canyon). There are several classes of train - there's a private luxury train with organized tours that travel through the area, travelling south from Tucson, AZ. There are also 2 classes of "standard" train service - first and second class. The prices are unbelievably low for tourists, considering exchange rates. First class is entirely affordable and comfortable, though travelling in second class with more of the local citizens and less tourists clearly has it's draw. You can elect to travel independently, or with a guided tour. Many people...Read More

Off the beaten path

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Story/Tip

Quote:
It's possible to travel through the canyon in a week or so (or even faster, if you're really tight for time), but you can extend your trip even longer by taking side trips off the main route of the train. Small side day trips are easily possible as well, no matter what your schedule - hosts at the hotels/lodges usually have information about hikes down into the canyons, etc that lead directly from the hotel. On my trip, I didn't get to go deep down into the canyon, which is supposed to be spectacular - especially towns such as Batopilas, Satevo and others that developed due to silver mining in the area. The descent down into the canyon to Batopilas is an infamous one - many truck drivers will ...Read More