Copper Canyon Cave

Since reading Churpa’s post on Rivers in Mexico vs. the US, I’ve been thinking about the The Copper Canyon River system.  This area not only has dramatic scenery and the fascinating Tarahumaras and their culture, but is a wonderful playground.   One of my favorite articles that Carl has written takes place in the Copper Canyon: I was feeling restless this morning, so I decide to explore the mesas and canyons to the _____ of us.  It took less than 30 […]

Read more »

Caves

    After a hard day on the trail, I’m back at the Sierra Madre Lodge, relaxing in front of a roaring fire. There’s a steaming mug of Darjeeling tea on the table beside me, while outside the last blush of a million-dollar sunset is splashed across the horizon. I was feeling restless this morning, so after seeing off our guests at 9:30 a.m., I decided to take a ‘bus driver’s holiday’ and explore the mesas and canyons to the _____ […]

Read more »

Chiles of Mexico: Chiltepín

Pickled and dried chiltepín at roadside restaurant.

“Rich, what’s a burro?” “I don’t know. Maybe a large burrito?” We decide to test our powers of deduction and stop at a comedor by the side of the winding road between Hermosillo and Agua Prieta. This will be our “last supper” in Mexico, and I want something special. I have a good feeling about this place: bright cardboard signs tacked to the hut-like exterior advertise burros, queso fresco, jerky, and salsa chiltepín . I don’t know what salsa chiltepín  is, […]

Read more »

Copper Canyon Correspondent

Rio Batopilas bridge 2013

What’s up Down There The paved highway from the junction at Samachique to Batopilas is progressing relentlessly. It has reached the roadside capilla where the 5am bus used to stop to allow folks to give thanks coming up, or where you could climb on top of the school bus for fabulous views of siete pisos going down. That popular capilla is now in the bottom of a ravine. Rubble from the road widening project is being pushed downhill, creating talus […]

Read more »

Crossing the Sierras

Spitting and Sputtering Our Way Across the Dusty Sierra Madre Carl Lumholtz’s description of crossing the Sierra Madre Occidental in 1890 leaves one quaking with fear of the unknown. Not much has changed in 120 years, but the opportunity to try to retrace his route left us shaking with anticipation. Near the beginning of his journey in Sonora, he describes leaving Granados for Bacadehuachi, and Nacori Chico. This extant route is for four-legged foot traffic and vaqueros only. We checked […]

Read more »

Feast of Thorns (Part Two): Tramping the Sonoran Sierras

Hiking in Sonora, a valley of palms in the dry desert

editor’s note: We interrupt the ongoing coverage of The Frank Holton Memorial Road Trip for a much desired update from our favorite Copper Canyon correspondent. The camino real we had been following up and down, and in and out of arroyos and up and over ridges finally ended at a rancho with a corral, a cattle chute and a couple of buildings. The metal cattle chute and trash from store-bought snacks were an indication that a road wasn’t far away. […]

Read more »

How to Get to Ex Hacienda Los Remedios

1. Take Highway 49 (libre) from Ciudad Jimenez, Chihuahua toward Gomez Palacio. 2. After about 70 kilometers, you’ll see a cemetery on your left. Just before the cemetery is a dirt road and a battered sign that reads Ex Hacienda Los Remedios. Turn left onto the dirt road. (If you come to the town of Escalon, you’ve gone a k or two too far.) 3. Follow the dirt road toward two buttes in the distance. You will cross an overpass […]

Read more »

Ex Hacienda Los Remedios

A hot spring in the Mexican desert.

After being held up by snow in the pass the night before, we were several hours behind.  Sundown was approaching and we decided it was time to start looking for a place to stay.  Zacatecas would have to wait another day. “Too bad everything is fenced off,” Churpa mused, “Or we could take one of these side roads into the desert and find a spot to camp.” “Or maybe we could find a cheap motel in one of these little […]

Read more »

Steve's Worst Nightmare

Semi in rearview mirror.

We clear the border at Agua Prieta in time for lunch. We’re feeling pretty good about our progress. “If we book it, I think we can still hit Chihuhua before it gets too dark,” I say optimistically, slurping on a pork and salsa verde taco. Actually I know Chihuahua is a stretch, but my elation at returning to Mexico is as good as a pair of rose colored glasses: even the potholes and the smell of sewage make me feel […]

Read more »