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Copper Canyon

Old Mar 31st, 2017, 03:06 PM
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Copper Canyon

Has anyone been here within the last few years?
Would love find a tour group.
Any recommendations?
Many thanks!
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Old Apr 3rd, 2017, 06:35 PM
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anyone?
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Old Apr 10th, 2017, 02:54 AM
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We went to the Copper Canyon about 8 years ago with a very small Canadian company that is no longer in business. I think they stopped doing it because of the the violence associated with the drug trade in Sinola province. I wouldn’t be surprised if the same is true for other companies.

Criminal activity aside, I wouldn’t want to go down into the canyon without a very experienced driver at the wheel. The hairpin turns, narrow road and blind corners made for a unnerving ride.

Such a wonderful part of the world. Hope you are able to find an acceptable way to visit.
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Old Apr 10th, 2017, 11:10 AM
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We did a tour of the Copper Canyon about three years ago with California Native Tours -- and despite some glowing reviews online, I would NOT recommend this company. The tour was over-booked, had a very poor itinerary (hours and hours in hot vans), and the hotels they used were uninspired. Two of the days on the 8-day tour consisted of full-days in the van only to stop in the late afternoon at a hotel and then get up the following day to leave. No time to explore. As an example, one of the stops after a full day of driving was Chihuahua on the evening before Day of the Dead - there was so much art and dancing and celebration going on in the zocolo, but we didn't have time to see much, as our hotel was a nondescript Great Western outside the city limits, and the van just took us into town for dinner, a quick look, and then back to the hotel to drive another ten hours the next day. My understanding is that the founder of the company has retired, and the remaining staff does not have the same ability to provide good tours.

I do know three people who have separately taken tours (including Copper Canyon) with MexEco tours, and they have all said they have had great experiences. http://www.mex-ecotours.com/

We went on the train along the rim of the canyon; in my opinion one does not need a tour to do that. We also drove down to the canyon floor and spent three days in Batopilas, with a few hikes and a visit to a small village and school. Being in Batopilas is like stepping back about a century.

eliztravels is correct - There is drug traffic activity in the area around Batopilas - one of our vans was sideswiped by a cartel pick-up truck in a rush, as we were traveling on a very narrow road with a drop-off down to the river right next to us. Pretty scary.

But nothing is scarier than the drive down into the canyon. The road is narrow, with giant boulders all around, and drop-offs of hundreds of feet. I have traveled for many many years on some primitive roads, but this was just about the most frightening experience I can recall. For hours, I was pretty sure we weren't going to survive.
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Old Apr 10th, 2017, 12:05 PM
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Road Scholar used to do CC, but stopped because of the drug situation. I enjoy their trips, so I'm sorry they haven't started up again.
A friend just went with Gate 1 and loved it, but there were 40 in the group! Don't think I could stand that! Pity, as I liked their itinerary and also that they fly in and out of Tucson or Phoenix.
Thanks for the heads up re California Native Tours. I'll avoid them!
BTW- That drive down sounds horrific!
Have to study some maps!

Thanks for your replies.
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Old Apr 12th, 2017, 11:39 AM
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We booked a Copper Canyon package some 15+ years ago through Copper Canyon Lodges:
http://coppercanyonlodges.com/

We spent 2-3 nights up on the rim of the canyon at Cabanas Canon del Cobre, and 4-5 down at Batopilas at the Riverside Lodge. After we went I know the lodges closed down for a while, but now at least the Riverside Lodge is back.

It was a GREAT trip! They met us at the airport in Chihuahua, drove us to lodges, and had various activities arranged every day that you could chose to participate in or not. Hiking, bird watching (we saw trogons), visiting local families, nearby churches, waterfalls. Plus plenty of time for enjoying the lodge with a cocktail. The food was fantastic.

Batopilas was definitely like stepping back in time. It almost seemed like there were more people on horseback than in motor vehicles, but maybe not. There was a cross by the roadside, we thought it the site of a highway accident but were told it was a family blood feud and someone had been gunned down there.

I don't know what the current owners offer as a package, but you could check it out.

Good luck.
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