From Dave Hensleigh, Owner and Lead Guide with Authentic Copper Canyon
There is so much to say about this great railway. I have spent 100s of hours rolling along on its path from Chihuahua City to Los Mochis and back. Perhaps it is that I am a train lover- but somehow this “little railway that could” works its way into the hearts of many who experience it.
The history of CHEPE:
One of the many utopian communities that popped up in the late 1800s migrated to Mexico and its founder Robert Owen had a vision. He thought the the railways of the midwest US could be linked to the Pacific Ocean by a railway through the Sierras. The destination would be the great port at Topolobampo- one of the deepest in the world. This costal area was also the site of their community.
Many entities had a part in the arduous construction over the years and finally the last parts of the line at Temoris were completed- including the amazing 180 degree turn tunnel.
What a trip on the Copper Canyon train is like:
I just love it when the train jumps and leaves the station in the early morning from Chihuahua City.
The little towns and the countryside:
Many of the little towns along the way are only seen in passing if at all by CHEPE passengers. But I have made it my target to visit every one of them- and they are enchanting. This is small town life in remote Mexico. Sure they have the train, but for many electricity is recent and supplies run slowly.
Personalities on the train:
There is Horatio, the guy from Bahuichivo who sells newspapers and burritos between stops. I recently saw him in Temoris and he said he has a regular job there now…no telling.
Then there is the little old man- his name escapes me- who takes your pic on am old Polaroid and cuts out the pic and puts it in a key chain- nice little business.
Then there are the railworkers and security.