A Guidebook For Traversing Copper Canyon By Train

Explore Copper Canyon via the Chihuahua-Pacific Railway.

Copper Canyon, situated in the state of Chihuahua in Northwest Mexico, is comprised of several canyons containing breathtaking scenery and unique activities, as well as the homes of groups of Indigenous people.

Formed more than 30 million years ago, the deep valley has cultivated striking green fauna in an area seven times larger than the Grand Canyon, prompting travelers to explore it in various ways, such as by foot, horseback and train.

Copper Canyon
Copper Canyon. Facebook: Rock the Traveller

The Chihuahua-Pacific Railway is a recommendable option, as it allows journeyers to see several regions of the canyon and pace themselves while touring Mexico’s wilderness. Stops from which customers can alight include El Fuerte, Bauhichivo, Posada Barrancas, El Divisadero and Creel.

Situated as the second stop along the railroad after Los Mochis, El Fuerte, which translates to “The Fort,” is characterized by its colonial atmosphere, as the town was founded in 1564 by Spanish explorer Francisco de Ibarra.

El Fuerte
El FuertEl Fuerte. Facebook: Debate

Visitors can see the church, Palacio Municipal and plaza, as well as a replica fort on Cerro de las Pilas. What’s more, one may view the surrounding area by climbing the hill to the mirador, or lookout, and spot the Rio Fuerte, which flows from headwaters in the Sierra Madre Occidental and into the Pacific Ocean.

After exploring the town, riders can board the next train to Bahuichivo, a train depot located approximately six miles away from Cerocahui, a relatively small village near Urique Canyon. From the community, which houses several campsites and hotels, one may embark on an hour-long hike to Cerocahuia Falls or journey by horse to other noteworthy natural sites.

Mirador Cerro del GallegoMirador Cerro del Gallego
Mirador Cerro del Gallego. Facebook: Rosy Ramos

Excursionists can also drive to Mirador Cerro del Gallego, a viewpoint with stupendous views of Urique Canyon, and spend time admiring the rugged green-carpeted hills and impressive river below.

Those wishing to immerse themselves further in the beauty of Copper Canyon have an opportunity to do so at the Posada Barrancas and El Divisadero stations, situated northeast of Bahuichivo and approximately 7,500 feet above sea level.

With each station providing access to stunning views of the valleys, one may spend time observing the area’s unique characteristics, such as the rocky green-speckled cliffs and tree-lined canyon rims, and purchase baskets, dolls and wood carvings from the Tarahumara, an indigenous tribe located in the highlands and gorges of the Sierra Madre Occidental.

If desired, travelers can stay in one of the nearby hotels and allot time for a hike or horseback ride down the canyon to engage in Copper Canyon’s natural amenities.

Valle de los Hongos
Valle de los Hongos. Facebook: Elias Explorador Mx

One may also interact with the Tarahumara by touring the area around Creel, a relatively small town whose train station allows explorers to immerse themselves in the pine-forested landscape and see sites like Valle de los Hongos and Valle de las Ranas, as well as homes of the indigenous people.

As the municipality has an altitude of 7,710 feet, one can witness the region’s beauty and revel in the natural scenery before re-boarding the train to the next stop.

With other stations surrounding El Fuerte, Bahuichivo, Posada Barrancas, El Divisadero and Creel, visitors to Copper Canyon have an opportunity to experience a uniquely rewarding environment while developing an understanding of the beauty of Mexico’s wilderness by traveling via the Chihuahua-Pacific Railway.

Copper Canyon
Image by David Olive from Pixabay

Ray Lewis

Content Editor Associate

Originally from New Jersey, Ray developed a passion for traveling through his adventures in Europe. He created unforgettable memories in Greece and Italy, but is looking to explore more countries in different parts of the world as well.

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