Copper Canyon Part 2

The Road From Creel to Hidalgo del Parral

I came to Copper Canyon after hearing about it last year when I was in Chihuahua filming for the documentary tv series I work on, Roadtrip Nation. I heard how beautiful the canyons were and about the people that live there.

Copper Canyon is a system of six canyons in the state of Chihuahua. Some parts of the canyon are deeper than the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

Copper Canyon is named because of the copper and green colors of the canyon walls

Copper Canyon is named because of the copper and green colors of the canyon walls

I was planning on making the trek from Creel to the town of Batopilas, a historic village at the bottom of the canyon. With the rain and fog not letting up I decided I’d skip it and go to Hidalgo del Parral to continue making my way south. I was looking forward to getting to the bottom of the canyon but I’ll come back with with a group of ADVRiders and really get lost. Plus the road from Creel to Parral might be my favorite stretch of riding yet.

The helpful staff at Amigo Trails gave me a few maps of the area with suggested stops to check out on my way south. 30km south of Creel I turned onto a rough dirt road for a few kilometers till a reached the Cusarare Mission and small village there.

The road to Cusarare Mission

The road to Cusarare Mission

The mission and museum next to it were closed when I got there and the rain started coming down again so I only took a few photos and was on my way.

Cusarare Mission built in 1741

Cusarare Mission built in 1741 

The region is home to the Raramuri tribe of Indians. I stopped by the Amigo Trails shop in Creel and they have a wealth of information on the area and offer tours as well. Here’s a brief description about the Raramuri from Amigo Trails:

The Raramuri are believed to be the purest and best preserved ethnic group on the entire American continent. Their culture and spiritual values are a result of thousands of years of struggle, which has filled them with an intensity for life and a sense of harmony in human relations and in their relationship with nature, the likes of which our modern society, with all of its technological advancement, has been unable to understand or attain.

A group of kids at Cusarare Mission

A group of kids came running up when I arrived

Kids at Cusarare Mission photo 2

A typical home in the Sierra Madres region.

A typical home in the Sierra Madres region.

I continued south along the winding canyon road.

I continued south along the winding canyon road.

There are very few places to pull over to take photos. Which is probably a good thing or else I would never get any riding done.

There are very few places to pull over to take photos. Which is probably a good thing or else I would never get any riding done.

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After passing Batopilas, the sky started to clear and I could actually see some of the surrounding landscape.

The road leaves the canyon and makes it way through fields and forests.

The road leaves the canyon and makes it way through fields and forests.

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I had never seen this before. Most farms I've seen here do this.

I had never seen this before. Most farms I’ve seen here do this.

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Guachochi

I stopped in Guachochi for quick lunch

Jamon y queso taco.

Jamon y queso taco. Also known as a ham and cheese taco.

The road to Parral

The road to Parral

Plenty of long straight aways. These short pine trees reminded me of the Pine Barrens in New Jersey.

Plenty of long straight aways. These short pine trees reminded me of the Pine Barrens in New Jersey.

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Copper Canyon has countless curves. Motorcycle heaven.

Copper Canyon has countless curves. Motorcycle heaven.

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I carry paper maps and use a Garmin Rino 530.

I carry paper maps and use a Garmin Rino 530.

A beautiful vista before reaching Hidalgo del Parral

A beautiful vista before reaching Hidalgo del Parral

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Comments

  1. Stephanie says

    Thank you for sharing your adventure with all of us. I feel as though I am right behind you as you ride ahead to the next stop. Beautiful scenery and beautiful people. I am always intrigued by cultures of simplicity, and find that in little ways I attempt to create simple moments, even where our lives are engulfed by activity and technology. For example, most Saturdays we have a homemade breakfast at home and enjoy the cooking, the food, and even the clean-up with some music (okay, enter technology ;)

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