Copper Canyon

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Chefchris, Feb 23, 2020.

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  1. Chefchris

    Chefchris n00b

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    Feb 5, 2016
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    Location:
    Northbrook Il
    Crossing at Presidio/Ojinga 03/11/20 or so headed to Copper Canyon area and would love to ride some of the way with other riders ,I will be continuing to La Paz via ferry. My
    bike for this run is V Strom 650. Can be flexible on date and time
    #1
  2. photo2u

    photo2u Been here awhile

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    Jan 8, 2020
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    S. California USA
    pm sent.
    #2
  3. Wallybanger

    Wallybanger Shraper & Braper

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    Jun 23, 2020
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    Ma-He-Co
    Hey, I'm living in La Paz and have been thinking about doing a copper canyon trip. How did it go?
    #3
  4. photo2u

    photo2u Been here awhile

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    Just my input regarding copper canyon. Is no longer worth it. Last time I went, the local drug people stopped me to ask me who I was. This place of Mexico, is not worth visiting anymore.
    Just my experienced...
    #4
  5. lawmans3

    lawmans3 Gringo from another mother

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2019
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    Location:
    Sonora, Mexico
    Sorry you were frightened off by the local narcos. Our terminology is 'Free Enterprisers'. We ride the Sierra Madre mountains quite a bit as I live down here in Mexico full time. They just wanted to make sure you were a tourist and not someone trying to take over their territory. We talk to them all the time, get directions, recommendations for lodging and restaurants.

    The adventures on a motorcycle you can have down here in Mexico are second to none but you have to understand some very important facts or don't come down:

    1. You will run into Free Enterprisers with or without knowing it. Smile, wave and mind your own business. You will have no problems. Don't be afraid to ask them for help, you will be surprised at how friendly they can be as you are not a threat to them.
    2. You are on your own. There is no air flight coming to get you. If you get hurt badly, you will most likely be put into a pickup truck and driven to a local hospital with minimal services and doctor experience.
    3. Cash (pesos) are king. Don't plan on using credit cards at all. Bigger cities will have this ability but the small towns and villages run completely on cash. Getting cash from a local ATM down here is better exchange rate than ordering from your bank or one of those places alongside the road who exchange currency. We generally plan $1,000 ($50 US) pesos a day for expenses (fuel, hotel, food, beer, etc.). The Last trip we took was 7 days six nights and I spent $253 US dollars total.
    4. You can drive as fast as you want the secondary highways as there is no enforcement out there but do so at your own risk! All of Mexico is free range for cattle, horses, mules, goats, deer, mountain lions, etc. Rock slides are constant and the rocks don't get cleared right away. The roads are narrow, with no shoulder or a steep drop off many times. The big trucks and buses use all of the road so watch the corners but there is not very much traffic, even on the main highways.
    5. Just because a road is marked as a highway on the map doesn't mean it's paved or even well traveled. The road pavement could end at any time and turn to dirt. The road might have been eroded due to the last huge rainstorm and you will have to drive off road through a field to continue on your way.
    6. Just because the ferry schedule says it leaves at 6 pm, doesn't mean it won't leave early at 2:30 pm and/or be canceled until the next day without notice until you get there.
    7. There are not many options for motorcycle parts other than common things like tires, tubes, spark plugs, etc. The larger cities will have motorcycle shops but the parts departments have very limited selection in stock.
    8. The people down here are second to none!!! They are most friendly and welcoming group you might ever run into. I am constantly amazed at their generosity, no matter what part of Mexico we are in. Not saying you won't run into an asshole, but there are assholes in every country but I believe less of them live in Mexico!
    9. Don't have a absolute time frame on your riding schedule. Be flexible and willing to go with the flow. If you can just 'roll with the punches' you will have a fantastic time down here. If you are type A person and everything has to be just so, stay away because you will go crazy. Mexico is a type A person's worst nightmare.
    10. The term 'Manana' does not mean 'tomorrow' like most Americans believe. All it means is just, 'not right now'.
    I have ridden all over the rocky mountains (Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, South Dakota) before I retired and it is very beautiful, no doubt! The rides (adventures) down here in Mexico are almost out of this world! To ride a technical dirt road (fire trail) with no guard railing of any kind, climbing a mountain, with a 1,500 ft drop off only a few feet away to get to the top and have a view most people will never see is amazing!!

    We try to do at least two trips to Copper Canyon each year. Our next one is tentatively planned for mid September 2020. If anyone is interested in coming along let me know. We try to keep the group size to 8 and under or it can become like herding cats. Happy to share my GPS info if anyone wants to see it.
    #5
  6. photo2u

    photo2u Been here awhile

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    I see your points. I have about 40+ years of riding all over the world. Central Asia, Europe, South America, Caribbean Etc. I often used to travel to Sonora. The land of my ancestors Yaqui Indian my self. However, I will not spend a red cent to feed the corrupted economy of this particular area.
    It will never be ok for me to get pull over by a narco to check me. I am Latino and things can quickly go south with these killers.
    I wish you safety and happiness in all of your rides. No mas "Sonora querida" for me.
    #6
  7. lawmans3

    lawmans3 Gringo from another mother

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    Location:
    Sonora, Mexico
    Yes, it's unfortunate these guys are allowed have free range for the most part with little correction from the government! You are definitely at a disadvantage being of 'local' blood. The free enterprisers are much more questioning of you then they are of more 'gringo' appearing motorcyclists! I have some of my mexican friends who say they get hassled more when they go into these areas, where we (old retired guys) are given a more leeway.

    The offer always stands, come on down and ride with us if you ever feel the urge to visit your ancestral grounds again. We are in San Carlos, Sonora.
    #7
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  8. jimmex

    jimmex Guero con moto Supporter

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    Location:
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    Been riding down there for 30 years, stopped by narcos countless times. Never had a problem. YMMV.
    #8
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  9. kantuckid

    kantuckid Long timer

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    Kentucky-Eastern that is!
    I saw that CC travelers is an area that now gets the attention of covid border watchers.
    #9
  10. lawmans3

    lawmans3 Gringo from another mother

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2019
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    Location:
    Sonora, Mexico
    I'm not sure what that is? I came through the border three days ago (in my truck) and there was nothing new at the border. No checks other than the standard 'red / green' light inspection area. It's Mexico, things change everyday. The one thing you can count on down here is that there is no consistency. It was hard to get used to as first, but now it's just life.

    Viva Mexico!!
    #10