Saturday

Day 10

 Batopilas is at the bottom of the Copper Canyon. After a seven hour drive (on a road even I cannot describe) everyone was tired, but eager to continue our adventure. Dinner was great. 
 





 
The next day, we visited the Catholic Girls School and the town square before continuing up the mountain to the Lost Mission, built in the 17th Century. 









To me, the highlight was visiting a Tarahumera Family. Everyone from the beginning of the trip has made us welcome. Everyone seems content and happy with their life. So little, but so much. Giving out candy to the children and Ken bringing out a musical clown for a new baby was a treat for all. 




 On our last night we were treated with musicians. A GREAT time. I wish I could share all my pictures. I wish you could see the beautiful silver town with such a rich history. A good decision to be here.















Vicki

Friday

Day 9


Group 1 left for the bottom of the Canyon in Batopilas at 9:00 AM.  It was a very cool morning, but temperatures warmed up with the sun.  The rest of us got on our bus at 9:30 AM.  We toured the Creel area.  
 
We visited a Tarahumara Indian cave dwelling, the San Ignacio Mission, and the Valley of Mushrooms.  In the afternoon, we went to the Museum.  
 


 
 Following that we went to an artisans store where the local Indians sell their craft in trade for their necessities.  In turn, the profits from the store all go to the hospital.  The Hospital is free for the Indians.  A number of us walked around the town for the rest of the afternoon.  Many shopped.  Later, we had a wonderful dinner at the hotel.  The hotel let us use a  wonderful room with a fireplace to gather before and after dinner.

Archie & Donna




Archie and Donna posted by their friends Jack and Lynda

Thursday

Day 8



The roosters with their loud cock a doodle doos had everyone awake bright and early.  The bus was loaded by 6:30 AM.  The bus ride to El Fuerte took about 1 hour 20 minutes. El Fuerte was established late in the 16th Century as a Fort to protect settlers from the attacks of rebellious Indians.
Following Loreto Station, we crossed the longest Bridge on the railroad, 1,637 feet, over the Rio Fuerte. Tunnel #49, La Pera is shaped like a horseshoe. We could see the Commemorative marker dedicated to  the railroad in 1961. It looked like the engine was coming out of the side of the mountains.

Armed Policia were on the entire train trip with us. The Policia seemed to switch railroad cars often.   One of the Policia was happy to pose for a picture.
The Hotel Plaza Mexicana Margaritas was a perfect place to stay.  It had traditional Mexican d├ęcor, new bedding and linens in all rooms.  Once the furnaces were lit, everyone was happy. Not to mention the bottle of Tequila making everyone even happier. Wonder where that came from?


Phil & Barb

Wednesday

Day 7

We left  our Park in Alamos at 9:00 AM January 30, 2013.  We had a few problems leaving the Park.  Jack had a low tire, and Felix and Rose had to make a very tight corner. 
James had problems pumping up his air bags. The wheels of Conrad’s tow vehicle locked, but in the end, we all got out safely.  Directions in the Adventure Caravan Road Log were great.  The trip was a relaxed, scenic drive.  We saw lots of corn growing on the many farms along the route. We saw lots of veggies and farm animals.  Very interesting.  We arrived in Los Mochis by 1:00 PM.  We had time to pack for the train ride to Creel.   
The Bus picked us up at 5:30 PM.  We drove to downtown Los Mochis for a lovely dinner at the Hotel Santa Anita.  We enjoyed  a flaming shrimp dinner.  










Jack & Lynda

Tuesday

Day 6



Entrance to our RV park in Alamos
Arabell & I awoke to the sound of barking dogs and swanking birds. It is Tuesday morning in Alamos Sonora Mexico at the Dolisa Hotel & RV Park.


Piano Recital

This is a “Free Day” and so we got to sleep in, but it’s “Back On The Road Again” in the morning.







This afternoon we walked into town and saw a piano performance by Jozef Olechowski at the Templo de la Purisima Concepcion de Alamos.





Church on the town square







We walked around the town with Al & Lois and did some window shopping and then back to the campground.

It is a wonderful afternoon, slight breeze and around 65 degrees.


Al and Lois on a winter's day


Life is GREAT when you are CARAVANNING.


















Bill and Arabell

Monday

Day 5



Our day starts with an expanded trip briefing and Mexican Bingo. I know I will knock the beans all over the place before I can claim a prize, so I marked up my card in pen and saved the beans for our next pot of chili.

Then we need to fill and treat our fresh water tank, as well as buy some drinking water from the little watering hole in the hotel. This is our first experience of the process, but it goes smoothly. A young woman is selling embroidered clothing in the dusty parking area. I get a pair of cool white Capri pants, which should come in useful later on this trip. None of the shirts fits Felix’s gorilla length arms, so he does not get anything.

At 1 pm we carpool into town to meet our walking tour guide, Emiliano, for a two hour stroll around the classier parts of town. Emiliano is witty and informative, but it is sometimes disconcerting to watch him talking while his voice comes from a speaker carried by Ken somewhere behind us. 



Alamos is celebrating the Alfonso Ortiz Tirado festival, which seems to a 10 day classical music event, with associated crowds, decorative carriages, food vendors and the like. Emiliano describes the towns silver mining history, the profits from which funded the proliferation of mansions, the church and other fine buildings in the main square. It’s a good tour; my only disappointment is that we never see a stop light with a pedestrian crossing. Driving in yesterday, I had noticed while waiting at stop lights, that the walking man icon actually walks, and then speeds up to a run as the walk time left goes to zero before the lights changes.

Dinner is at La Casa Aduana, a restaurant in La Aduana, a small former mining town. We carpool, giving me a chance to study the local plant life as a passenger in the back seat. The huge cactus here, which are often taller than the trees, are senita and cardon, but I don’t know which is which. We are now too far south for saguaro and organ pipe cactus. I spot a large vulture which I am pretty sure is a caracara.

The restaurant building is the former customs house dating back more than 350 years, and the proprietor is Sam Beardsley, a US expatriate who entertains us with local silver mining history and anecdotes. He is focused on mining and the unfortunate miners, and provides an interesting counterpoint to the more politically correct Emiliano who described what was done with the extensive wealth produced from the mines. We had seen the huge brick chimney above town, which seems to be the only visible relic of the mines. Interestingly, there are no mine tailings, unlike at Green Valley in Arizona, where we started our Adventure. There, massive piles stretch for miles to the west of town.

Dinner is pretty good, and we get to chat with Lynda and Jack, 5th wheelers from Canada. They have done other Adventures and we have a good time listening to their experiences.
Felix and Rose

Sunday

Day 4



Taking a break for lunch
January 27 was a travel day from Guaymas to Alamos. Pretty good route, but lots of topes (speed bumps).  We saw plenty of “wild life” cows, chickens, goats and a horse drawn carriage. Our small group of 3 Rigs decided to stop at PEMEX Station #4143 for fuel (they accepted credit cards) and then have lunch.  As we were rolling out, we noted 9 more of our Adventure Caravan Rigs had already rolled in or were rolling in on the other end of the huge PEMEX Station. 


Our Police Escort into Alamos
The excitement really began as we started going down one by one every 5 minutes from PEMEX Station  #8117 to the Dolisa RV Park in Alamos. The entry was tight and narrow and quite challenging.  I told Carole, our Wagonmaster, I’d relieve her with the red flag she was using to help our guests know where to turn into our park. When I got back to the street, there had been a new development. Carole said the local Police were going to escort our Rigs down in small groups.  By this time, Lynn arrived by car while #2 Tail gunner Clary was back at the PEMEX directing the action. I snapped photos as the first police car came down the street leading 9 Rigs from our second group. The police led all the Rest of the Rigs down to the Park entrance. Lots of local people were watching.  

Time to relax after a travel day


After Happy Hour at Phil and Barb's Rig, with good munchies and conversation about our day, we adjourned for a quick supper and headed with 12 others to the Alamos 2013 cultural festival.



We ended up watching a magnificent opera.  It was an enjoyable evening, something none of us expected to be doing this evening...  


Mari & Mark