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Calou's Blog
Cruising with the crew of CALOU on the Baja Ha-ha and Pacific Puddle Jump
Francois meets Tamahumara Indian kids
01/20/2007, Copper Canyon

Francois and I did a 2 hour guided horseback ride around the rim above Copper Canyon. Along the way we saw many Tamahumara indians. These handsome people wear very colorful clothes, make intricate baskets that they sell to tourists, and grow corn and beans on their garden plots. They live in tiny log cabins (about 10 foot square) or sometimes in caves with log cabin fronts.

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Arrival at Copper Canyon

We arrived at the fabulous Mirador Hotel, an adobe colored building perched on the edge of the precipice that is the north rim of the Copper Canyon; every room in the hotel has a commanding view of the impressive canyon.

At 2400 m altitude, the temperatures were below freezing at night and in the 30's (Farenheit) in the daytime.

We spent two nights at this delightful hotel, enjoying the views, hikes around and into the canyon, and tours to surrounding areas.

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Getting fooled in Cerocahui

We got our bags packed at the Mision Hotel around 11:00 so that we could make the train that would pick us up at noon. It rained all that morning, so we the guests of the hotel and the hotel manager spent the morning relaxing and talking in the hotel salon.

At about 11:00, the hotel manager announced to us that he just received a message that, due to the rains, a mud slide had closed the railroad. Due to lack of roads, this railroad was really the only way into or out of the area. He told us it could take possibly one, or maybe two or three more days before rail service could resume.

He had everyone believing it right up until 11:30, when it was time to board the bus that would take us to the train terminal!

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We boarded the train from El Fuerte and arrived at Bahuichivo, elevation 1700 meters. A rustic school bus picked us up and drove us another half hour over dirt roads into the mountains to the village of Cerocahui (serro kah wee). The village features a Jesuit mission that was constructed in 1685. Right next to the church is the Mision Hotel, a beautiful Spanish style hotel. It rained the whole time we were there, so we briefly toured the village, and then spent the rest of the afternoon and evening in the hotel's salon, playing cards with 4 other guests and dining together at the common dining table. (These guests followed our itinerary for the rest of our trip and we came to know them and enjoy each others' company).

Francois became the keeper of the fireplace, starting the fire in the two fireplaces in the salon and adding logs when necessary.

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On the way to Cerocahui

Here we are enjoying the ride in the first class accomodations aboard the train, "CHEPA", acronym for "Chihuahua-Pacifico".

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Posada Del Hidalgo Hotel

Here's a view of the Posada Del Hidalgo hotel.

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On the way to Copper Canyon: El Fuerte

We began a 6-day side trip by bus and train to visit Copper Canyon, a rugged part of the Sierra Madre mountains in the state of Chihuahua.

Our first leg consisted of a 5 hour ride aboard a luxuy bus from Mazatlan to Los Mochis, and then a 1-1/2 hour ride on a rustic local bus from Los Mochis to El Fuerte.

El Fuerte is a historic colonial town with buildings dating to the 18th century, including our very scenic hotel, Pasado Del Hidalgo.

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Our friends, George, Melinda, and son Joshua, leave Mazatlan on Southern Belle, their beautiful catamaran. There wasn't a dry eye on board Calou; we miss them and wish them bon voyage, fair winds and flat seas. We hope to see them again some day, but are not sure when or where.

They will cruise Mexico and return to the Sea of Cortez around June to get north of the hurricane season. At least that is the tentative plan. The number one rule of cruising is: you can't make schedules.

Our valued crew member John has gone with them; he'll sail with them to Puerto Vallarta and then take a bus back to our boat in Mazatlan. Lucky guy, we envy him.

We could sail our boat to Puerto Valarta, but we're enjoying the resort life here in Mazatlan SO much, with the swimming pools and all, we've decided to stay put for another month or so, til Feb 8, when Pascale and the boys fly home.

I can see how easy it would be to just keep sailing south.......

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01/06/2007 | Doug Boudinot
So sorry you are stuck in Mazatlan for another month having to suffer with all that resort life. I just hate it when that happens. Hope you can survive!! Totally enjoy!
01/07/2007 | Monty
Yes, it must be a real hardship to have to suffer through that.
I pitty them for all the lobster and great seafood they will be eating and rum drinks they will be drinking as well as all the sunlight they will be soaking up.
If you need someone to fill in for a while, let me know!
haha. Thanks for letting us share it with you, and have fun!

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