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BARRANCAS DEL COBRE

TOURING THE RAVINES

-Urique: it is the deepest in the Tarahumara Sierra, as the Barrancas del Cobre are also known, with a length of 50 kilometres and a depth of 1870 metres.
In order to visit it you have to descend along a long path that starts at 2000 metres above sea level and ends at 600 metres. The trip is completed in two days and, besides an adequate physical condition, it is necessary to hire the services of a specialised guide.
The change in the vegetation and the setting is notorious during the descend. The pine trees and ilexes are abundant in the upper part, where there are vantage points that allow scrutinising the horizon; acacias and evergreen alders grow in the intermediate zone, and fig trees and cacti thrive on the bottom of the ravine.
Besides trekking, other adventure activities such as mountain biking, rappelling and rock scaling are also practiced in Urique. There are camping areas offering the necessary conditions to enjoy the night in open-air at the ravine.
Regarding its name, it may come from the Tarahumara word meaning "ravine" according to some scholars, or "warm lowland" according to others. Although the most pragmatic who do not take into account the etymological studies, considered that it was given due to its proximity to the Town of Urique, the municipal head of the zone.
The Town of Urique can be accessed by land (5 hours from Chihuahua), by air (50 minutes from Chihuahua), and by train (through the railway connecting Chihuahua and the Pacific, a train that is taken at the state capital or at Los Mochis).

-Sinforosa Ravine: its largest depth is at the vantage point of the Summits of Guérachi (1830 metres), though its best setting is openly evident at the vantage point of the Summits of Sinforosa (1400 metres), starting point for the trip towards the guts of the ravine. The road has a 6-kilometre extension and the landscapes vary according to the descend, going from a forest with characteristics proper of a cold climate to a scenery of wild flowers and fruit trees, typical of a semitropical zone. Abyssal defiles and beautiful cascades complement the setting of Sinforosa, which is 120 kilometres long.
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    This ravine is located at 16 kilometres of Guachochi, a town which in turn is located 344 kilometres away from Chihuahua (5 hours by land and 1 hour by plane).

    -Cascade of Basaseachi National Park: forests, ravines and streams present each of its 625 hectares with extreme beauty. Its name translated into English means "place of cascades or coyotes" and makes reference to its main attraction, a waterfall 246 metres high that cools the Candameña Ravine.
    Its geography and surrounding setting vary from the forests of pine trees and ilexes, besides agaves and evergreen alders, which shelter numerous bird species such as eagles, woodpeckers, wild turkeys and so called coa birds - on the brink of extinction -, along with pumas, deer, foxes and lynxes, amongst others.
    There is a 2-kilometre road in the park leading to the entrails of the waterfall; the path crosses the vantage point of The Window, ideal to watch the magnificent panorama of nature from above.
    The park is located 270 kilometres west of Chihuahua by land, and at 215 kilometres by air.
    The following places are worthy of visiting inside the park:
    • Candameña Ravine: it is located within the area of the National Park, and one should not fail to visit the Cascade of Piedra Volada and a boulder baptised as The Giant, a true paradise for rock scaling devotees. It is situated 276 kilometres east of Chihuahua and 4 hours away from the City of Cuauhtémoc.

    • Cascade of Piedra Volada: it is a majestic fall of approximately 453 metres, being one of the highest in Mexico and one of the 11 highest on the planet. Its flow is instable because it is fed by a seasonal river, unlike the Cascade of Basaseachi that has an impressive fall throughout the year. June and September (winter) are the best months to admire it.
      The cascade can be fully appreciated from the vantage point of Huajumar, at 25 minutes by foot from Basaseachi, a locality situated at 270 kilometres from Chihuahua (four hours through the highway).
      There are ideal trails for the practice of trekking, horseback riding and mountain biking in the surroundings of Piedra Volada; besides camping zones.

    • The Giant: it is the largest boulder in the country by far; it is 800 metres high from the Candameña River, where it rises, up to its summit. It is located in the mid part of the Candameña Ravine, and it is ideal for the practice of rappelling and rock scaling.


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