Copper Canyon MX Trip Planning

Discussion in 'Americas' started by steelincable, Mar 8, 2017.

  1. steelincable

    steelincable n00b

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    Hi fellow inmates!! Me and four other riders are planning a trip from Illinois to Copper Canyon to ride the countryside 3/18 - 26 and could use some help/advice. The guy who usually does the advrider posting isn't going to make this trip, so I thought I'd give it a go. Three of us did the COBDR last summer and had a blast, so just looking for fun adventure riding and awesome scenery. The idea is to be light, fast and nimble. Me and a buddy are riding WR250R's with two other guys on 610/630 Husky's (not sure what the other guy is riding). No big bikes. No camping. No real plan except finding a motel and cervezas at a small town establishment each night.

    We're planning on departing 3/18 with bikes in trailers and driving straight through to somewhere in Texas with the general destination of Chihuahua in mind. Google maps has us crossing at Presidio TX. That brings me to my first question. Are there any inmates who would be within proximity of that crossing and allow two trucks with trailers to stay a week (3/19 - 25) or advice on where I should post the question?

    From there we plan on riding the bikes across the border, hauling ballz past the rougher border city area, and heading in the general direction of Chihuhua. I'm looking for advice on some great roads, scenery, places to stay, places to go (or avoid), or even routes in and around the Copper Canyon area. I found a recent posting from sjeproductions with some great info.

    Thanks in advance! Joe
    #1
  2. Sjoerd Bakker

    Sjoerd Bakker Long timer

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    Would think that your best bet would be to park the trucks in someplace like Marfa or even in Presidio at some sort of storage yard or maybe even arrange it with a motel there .Ask around . .
    To my way of thinking Ojinaga the border town does not figure as a ". rougher border city " Really, nothing to fear , so you can take the tail from between your legs and have a nice relaxing ride toward Chihuahua and beyond to the CC. Have a peek at Candamena Canyon, ride the Libre to Cuauhtemoc, then the shortcut south to access Bocoyna and the main road to Creel and the further explorations into the scenic canyon stuff from there .
    From Creel you can ride west to San Rafael and farther to do the loop thru Urique to Batopilas .,Or simply go south from Creel and drop down into the canyon to visit Batopilas for day or two , and then back for the trip to your trailers . There are hotels in all the places just mentioned .
    #2
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  3. pranajerni

    pranajerni Been here awhile

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    there are a few raft/atv rental companies in terlingua that may have some room in their back 40 for a weeks worth of parking. ride and cross at presidio. a google search for rafting big bend would come up with some space. desert sports comes to mind. even the rv park at the t junction may have long term parking.
    #3
  4. severely

    severely almost a noob

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    There are several places to park your vehicles in Presidio that are reasonably priced and secure. Google vehicle parking in Presidio. Buena suerte
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  5. SKINNY

    SKINNY Been here awhile

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    The café next door to the 3 Palms motel in Presidio has long term parking for a small fee. I've left my truck there several times for trips to Copper Canyon.
    Never had any issues.
    #5
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  6. rpilottx

    rpilottx Long timer

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    I was in Creel the first week of February showing another inmate from Toronto the roads. We rode from Creel to Presidio and then back to ELP through the Big Bend: 1) Creel is closer to El Paso (420 miles from my door) and a fellow inmate here has a ranch and allows parking. You can cross at Santa Theresa, NM and avoid Juarez.
    2) We had no difficulty with fuel availability anywhere from Douglas, Az to Presidio, Tx. Premium is available in Creel.
    3) We were the only bikes in Creel and the morning we left it was 22 degrees warming up to the mid 60's in the afternoon. Creel is 7700 feet above sea level.
    4) The road to the bottom of the canyon is paved but lots of rockfall keeps traffic slow.
    5) The peso has dropped almost 20% since Cheeto's election in November. We paid $12/night each in Creel for a hotel room. The rooms at the Divisidario are still about $150 for a double. The ride to the Divisidario is outstanding.
    6) Presidio, Texas is a dump. There are only three hotels in town and I would not let my dog stay in one of them. The other was overpriced (think Motel 6 for $80). Alpine, Texas has a range of motels and a great museum at Sul Ross University.

    If you have any more questions or want details to park your trucks, PM me or call 915 588 5054. Rich
    #6
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  7. rpilottx

    rpilottx Long timer

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    And, you have probably heard this before but be careful in Mexico. I do not mean bandits or the cartel. On this last trip we were run off the road by two semis passing on a curve. The one in our lane of traffic was not going to stop his passing maneuver when confronted by a couple motorcycles. And most of the roads in Mexico have little or no shoulder.

    Do not ride at night. Be careful of cars or animals in the road. There are lots of vehicles without brake lights. In La Paz, just before New Years there were two cars in the opposite traffic without any lights whatsoever.

    It is a great country and I love riding there but stay alert.
    #7
  8. jimmex

    jimmex Guero con moto

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    I like to use Marfa, TX as a starting/ending point for my forays into Copper Canyon. Its a fun little town with some good restaurants and hotels, but its not cheap. I would stay in Ojinaga before I would in Presidio. And Ojinaga is not a "dangerous border town." Saludos.
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  9. steelincable

    steelincable n00b

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    Lots of really great info, thanks all. This will be my first time riding - or even driving - in MX. My wife and I have done some coastal vacation excursions that have gone off the beaten path and the rules of the road seem....optional...from what I recall. We hope to never get caught out at night other than a drunken walk back to la motel. Glad to hear Ojinaga is a safe crossing. I'll do some calling around for a place to park per suggestions, really appreciate it.
    #9
  10. steelincable

    steelincable n00b

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    A couple things popped into my head. We're planning bringing tubes, spoons, repair kits, CO2, etc. What's the availability of any sort of bike or tire shop if we were to run into a problem in the Chihuahua area (battery, mangled tire/wheel, etc)? I realize that we are going to be in some pretty remote places with no napa around. Also, how's fuel availability and quality in these smaller towns?

    I'm also curious about bike parking at MX motels. I've seen some places where you have sort of a garage. Should we be concerned at all about bike theft? Anything to consider other than typical precautions like removing luggage and accessories?

    What about personal preparations? None of us are flashy or fighting drunks and we pretty much stick to ourselves, but i'm sure we'll stick out like a sore thumb. We're planning on staying out of any and all big cities. I think only one guys speaks Spanish in the group while my vocabulary ends at cerveza - google translate to the rescue! Should we consider things like carrying a burner wallet and phone? I've had nothing but great experiences in the dozen or so small towns I've ever visited in MX, but haven't ventured this far inland. Are guys like us doing adventure riding generally looked upon in a positive light?
    #10
  11. akaDigger

    akaDigger Amateur Adventurer

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    Relax. Drive straight through to south Texas, park, cross at Ojinaga, import your bikes. If you are leaving central Illinois on Saturday morning, you should be in Ojinaga by late afternoon. Stay there for the night. Relax some more. Monday will be an easy ride all the way to Creel. Too bad your trip will have to be so short. No problem finding motorcycle stuff in Chihuahua. Keep your internet connection handy so you can post back here if you get in a jam. Read #2 on the IMS thread if you have not done so already.

    In my view, "guys like us doing adventure riding", are generally looked upon in a positive light.
    #11
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  12. SKINNY

    SKINNY Been here awhile

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    Chihuahua is a huge place....takes better part of 1 hour to get all the way thru...if you get lost (easy to do) it's even worse.
    There are Pemex stations all the way to Creel, from there into the canyons, you'll be getting barrel gas.
    Creel has a motorcycle/atv shop that can help with tire/minor mechanical problems.
    Just to set you mind at ease, I've had the experience of being pulled over at gunpoint by unmarked, non-uniformed local cops...
    Worked out OK, but an Uzi in your face as you're driving along is a bit nerve-wracking....:-)
    #12
  13. Powershouse

    Powershouse Flower Sniffer

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    Drive through to Presidio. Spend the night at the Three Palms Hotel - they will allow you to leave your trailer/vehicle there. If timing allows handle the bike importation and get some pesos that day so you can get a quick start in the morning. Sort your stuff out. Have a good breakfast then vanamos!
    Border to Creel will make for a long day, Cuahtemoc might be a better first day destination. From there you could take paved roads to Creel or head south to Carichi-Sisoguichi-Creel for some scenic gravel roads.

    You'll want to be prepared to do your own tire repairs. Bring some JB Weld, zip ties, duct tape and some wire so you have the ability to McGyver stuff as needed to get to next town.
    #13
  14. Sjoerd Bakker

    Sjoerd Bakker Long timer

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    Ciudad de Chihuahua is really a very simple task to ride through as long as you have ANY sense of direction and can read the big road signs . Relax , loosen up the death grip on the handlebars , look around .
    Right now ,after reading this post , go on googlemaps and get the enlargement of this city map and find out what your transit will look like . Don't be timid , enlarge that map as far as you can and see what is there , get the photo image . Do not fear the city , feel free to relax and do a tour of downtown streets .
    From Ojinaga you will be coming into town from the north on Mex 16 which will turn into a major 4 lane Boulevard with plenty of signage to direct you through to CUAUHTEMOC and the Copper Canyon country to the west .
    The hotels you should be selecting as you travel should be picked on the simple criteria of having rooms and having enclosed off street parking . Very simple ; if it does not have such parking skip to another hotel that does , there will be choice enough . Don't panic and take a hotel where you can only park on the street .
    As for parking in Presidio or in Marfa- don't feel obligated to spend the night there if it is still mid afternoon. Head straight for the border and get your bikes and persons papered and take a hotel in OJINAGA , much better selection and prices on the Mexican side !
    #14
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  15. CalamariKid

    CalamariKid Been here awhile

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    I'm doing this ride about the same time. I'll be spending the night in Presidio at 3 Palms, leaving my car and trailer there - $4/day for them to keep an eye on it - and crossing into Mexico on Sat the 18th. There is one other rider with me and we will be (or at least trying to...) going down the dirty path to Batopilas via Urique. I'm on a GS and he's on a WR, so we will see if my skills on the GS are up to the task of the road from Urique to Bato - if not we will just go back to Creel and head down on the 'paved' road. We are planning on spending the night in Creel on night one and this puts us in Bato the night of 20th and then we will take the pave road out of there. We may end up reversing that (paved road down - dirty road out out). If you want to exchange info feel free to PM me.
    #15
  16. Wolfman01

    Wolfman01 What's this button for...

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    Going to be awesome!
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  17. spiderman.bk

    spiderman.bk Adventurer

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    Hey dude,

    It looks like we have the same plans and the same time frame approx. There are 5 of us heading to the Canon de Cobre, crossing at Presidio on the 21st. We are from GA, NY and NM and meeting each other in Ft Stockton on the 19th and then riding the Big Bend the 20th.

    After Chihuahua, Creel, Batopilas we are hoping to ride through Tubares, Choix to El Fuerte God willing and the creek to rise. Ferry from Topolobampo to La Paz and then a week riding the Baja, maybe catching a glimpse of some whales and such. Hoping we will cross paths and share some stories over a brew.

    We are riding GS's and a KLR thrown in for good measure. 17270654_10212629095909132_1015000464_n.jpg
    #17
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  18. steelincable

    steelincable n00b

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    Slight change of plans. We decided we'll leave Friday afternoon, drive straight through and cross on 3/18 around 3pm. Thanks everyone for the ideas and I'll send PM's to everyone that will be down around that time. I'm very much appreciate the responses and have found a wealth of info on the site as usual (I'm usually a reader not a poster). I'm looking forward to an awesome trip.
    #18
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  19. steelincable

    steelincable n00b

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    Question on the 'shortcut south' from Cuauhtemoc to Bocoyna. Zooming in on google maps i can't quite find the/a route. Does the shortcut turn west at El Gorgorito or after Carichi?
    #19
  20. jimmex

    jimmex Guero con moto

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    You go though Carichi and follow the river out towards Bocoyna. Carichi is a few dozen clicks off of 16. Its a nice ride through the countryside. Saludos.
    #20
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