The California Native International Adventures

Since 1983

From The California Native Newsletter:

Star Gazing in Copper Canyon

By Chuck Rau Comet Hale-Bopp
Deep, spectacular canyons, breathtaking vistas, remote mountain villages and the cave-dwelling Tarahumara Indians—these are all great reasons to join us on our Copper Canyon adventures. But in this remote area of Mexico's Sierra Madres the sky itself adds another incentive for making the journey.

Far from the lights of cities, the Sierra Madre nights are clear and dark. Looking skyward, you can see wondrous sights—meteorites, planets, stars and, on special occasions, some of the heavens' most spectacular exhibitions.

During the spring of 1997, our Copper Canyon trips provided us perfect sites for viewing the comet Hale-Bopp, called the comet of the century. From vantage points along the canyon rim at Divisadero and Tejaban, and from the bottom of the canyon in the little town of Batopilas, we enjoyed spectacular views of this celestial visitor. One night after dinner we gathered outside of our hotel to view the comet at its closest approach. Many local citizens stopped to join us, and we ended up having an impromptu comet party in the remote mountain village of Creel.

Back in May of 1994 there was a near total eclipse of the sun. As our small group assembled along the canyon rim, I passed out the special glasses which I brought for viewing the eclipse. As the light began to fade, the local Tarahumara Indians came rushing to see what was happening to the sun, and together we all watched this unforgettable event.

What other astronomical shows will we be treated to on future Copper Canyon trips,? Another eclipse, another comet, a meteor shower, E.T.or ...?

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