Copper Canyon (Barranca del Cobre), located in the Sierra Madre Mountains of northwestern Mexico in the state of Chihuahua, is four times larger than the Grand Canyon. It is a series of 20 canyons which includes four massive gorges covering 25,000 square miles.
September and October in this part of Mexico is when the vegetation including the wildflowers comes to life, the streams and waterfalls begin to flow after the summer rains, and the temperatures are more moderate at the rim as well as in the canyons. Nature lovers at all levels:gardeners, naturalists, and botanists; hikers; birders; geologists; and anyone else with a sense of adventure–will find the Copper Canyon tour (limited to 8 people) a unique trip of a lifetime.
The tour of Copper Canyon will include a train ride on the historic Copper Canyon Railroad (Chihuahua-Pacific Railway), one of the world’s most spectacular and scenic train rides. When you board the train at the Bahuichivo station, you are at about 8,000 feet in elevation, and as you gradually descend in elevation, you pass through tunnels and cross bridges as you are leaving the magnificent Copper Canyon region. The tour will end in the city of Los Mochis.
The Copper Canyon tour will provide you with a wonderful cross section of spectacular scenery, nature hikes to explore the volcanic terrain as well as to view the beautiful wildflowers, visits to cultural and historical sights, and opportunities to interact with the Tarahumara (the indigenous people of the region). There is now an added feature of an optional zip line (second longest zip line course in the world) from the rim down into the canyon or descent on a tramway.
Doug “Diego” Rhodes, who is the owner and operator of the Paraiso del Oso and the Rancho del Oso in the Copper Canyon region since 1990, will be one of the guides for the Copper Canyon tour. He is a very experienced biligual tour guide and well informed on the human and natural history of the area. Diego also has a strong sense of community service which includes having worked on medical missions and works very closely with his Tarahumara neighbors just to name a few of his projects. Please visit his very informative web site at www.mexicohorse.com.
Linda Ford is the author of the first ever Field Guide to the Wildflowers of Mexico’s Copper Canyon Region and has 20 years of experience as a Master Gardener. As your naturalist guide, she will provide you with a rich exposure to the flora of the area that went into the botanical research and creation of her book. You will have opportunities that few other visitors have ever had when exploring the Copper Canyon region. Linda has been making regular trips to Copper Canyon since 2004, and with the proceeds from her book, she has provided scholarships for young Tarahumara so they can continue their education.
The two tour guides—Diego and Linda—would like to assure you that your safety is their top priority, and they have chosen your itinerary to provide you with a safe and pleasant journey to the best of their abilities.
Copper Canyon Tour Itinerary
October 3, Day 1 – Arrival in Chihuahua for transfer from airport to Chihuahua City. Walking tour of the historical sites. Quality Inn.
October 4, Day 2 – Morning drive to Guachochi – home of Sinforosa Canyon. Stopping at the historic Tarahumara peublo of Norogachi passing the headwaters of the Rio Urique as well as explore a small, side canyon called Namurachi. Hotel Melina in Guachochi. B,L, Welcome dinner
October 5, Day 3 – Morning tour to the Sinforosa Canyon with scenic hike down into canyon. Picnic lunch. Late afternoon visit to Lago de los Garzas and the Cascada Salto. Hotel Melina in Guachochi. B,L
October 6, Day 4 – Morning departure to Creel with nature hike to Cusarare waterfall (4 miles round trip easy to moderate) with its dramatic and wide curtain of water. Eared quetzals as well as abundance of wildflowers are frequently seen on this hike. Boxed lunch. Stop at 18th century church at Cusarare (location of book “In the Sierra Madre” by Jeff Biggers) and possibly Loyola Museum of restored religious art. Hotel in Creel, B,L
October 7, Day 5 – Outside Creel explore the natural formations of the Valley of the Mushrooms and then hike to the Valley of the Monks with huge rock hodoos. Stop at scenic Lago Arakeako. Free afternoon in Creel. Hotel in Creel, B,D
October 8, Day 6 – Vehicle tour to Cerocahui with lunch at the lookout near Divisadero including one with a glass floor. Optional descent on tramway or zip line into canyon. Hotel Paraido del Oso. Welcome cocktail. B,L,D
October 9, Day 7 – Hike to waterfall (4 miles round trip moderate to difficult) and wildflower viewing in area near Cerocahui. Swimming an option. Possible opportunity to spend time with girls from Tarahumara boarding school when they come for fun and games as well as pizza party at hotel. Hotel Paraiso del Oso B,L,D
October 10, Day 8 – All day tour to Cerro Gallegos, the most spectacular view of the Copper Canyon. Cookout on the rim with stops on way for viewing and photographing wildflowers as well as visit home of naturalist. Hotel Paraiso del Oso B,L,D
October 11. Day 9 – Vehicle tour toward Temoris to view vast array of wildflowers. Optional afternoon hike weather permitting (somewhat difficult), horseback riding, or proceed to Cerocahui where history of area is covered during church visit followed by a tour of the Tarahumara boarding school. Hotel Paraiso del Oso B,L,D.
October 12, Day 10 – Free morning. After lunch transfer to Bahuichivo station to board the train for most spectacular of all the route on your way to Los Mochis. The train follows deep canyons as it passes highest bridge, longest bridge, and longest tunnel. Flowers are in abundance and keep your eyes out for flocks of parrots. Best Western Hotel. B,L
October 13 – Flights home.
TOUR SIZE: This tour will be limited to 8 participants.
FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS: The fee for the tour is $2,049 per person in double occupancy from Chihuahua, Mexico. This includes most meals from breakfast on Day 2 to lunch on Day 10, tour includes train tickets, and guide services provided by the tour leaders.It does not include airfare from your home to Chihuahua and return from Los Mochia; transportation to Los Mochis airport; alcoholic beverages; special gratuities; or items of a personal nature.
The single supplement for this tour is $399. You will be charged a single supplement if you desire single accommodations, or if you prefer to share but have no roommate and we cannot provide one for you. Note: B,L,D indicates what meals are included each day.
TOUR REGISTRATION: To register for this tour, please carefully read the Terms and Conditions, complete the Reservation Form, and then send the Registration Form signed with your $300 deposit. Make checks payable to Copper Canyon Wildflower Tours. Send to Linda J. Ford, 244 NY 355, Poestenkill, N.Y. 12140.If you have any questions, please contact Linda Ford at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518 283-4201.