Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Cruising up the Grijalva River through the breathtaking Sumidero Canyon

The Canyon de Sumidero is one of Chiapa's natural wonders in the countryside a few kilometers east of Tuxla Guitierrez with the Rio Grijalva (or the Rio Grande de Chiapas) flowing northward thorough it.  The Chicoasen Dam was completed in 1981 at the canyon's northern end creating a narrow, 35 kilometer-long reserve.  The canyon was tens, even hundreds of meters deep before the dam was built.
It was a beautiful morning when I boarded the launch down at the river in the small town of Chiapas de Corzo.
Heading up the river, we entered the canyon's mouth as we passed under Highway 190, one that I had driven on to reach Chiapas de Corzo. 
It was early spring and some of the trees were just starting to leaf out.  These particular walls had an interesting assortment of cacti growing out of the crevices.
Along the way you will see a variety of birds - Herons, Egrets, Cormorants, Vultures and King Fishers and an occasional group of Spider Monkeys hanging out in the trees.
The canyon walls began to grow in height.  In some areas, they reach a height over one kilometer.
The rainy season had not started so the vegetation was not as green as it will be in the months to come.  There are many caves and interesting rock formations.  This lush triangle of moss and vegetation cascading down the side of the canyon's wall is known as the Arbol de Navidad (Christmas Tree).
The boat takes over an hour to reach the dam with stops on the way to check out the wildlife and other interesting sites.  
We stopped and waited as a boat approached, a mini-store on the water selling water, soft drinks, cut up jicama and other goodies to tempt the thirty tourist.  What a handsome young man helping his mother out that day.
Back in Chiapas de Corzo, I was impressed by the main square with elaborate brick, octagonal shaped foundation and fountain that was built in 1562.   With its Mudejar and Gothic features along with flying buttresses, it is said to resemble the Spanish crown.  Beautifully maintained, the red-orange brick displays an intricate design. 
It's a pretty little village and the place where I will be staying with my group our first night in Chiapas.  We arrive around 6:00pm into the Tuxtla Guitierrez airport and my driver will take us to our hotel just off the main square.  The next morning will be an exciting boat trip up the Rio Grijalva.  Then on to San Cristobal de Las Casas where we will have lunch and later tour of the town.

If interested in joining me, check out my post dated 5/4/2016 and send me an email with your name and mailing information to robindsg@aol.com.  Then I can mail you a detailed itinerary along with pricing.  I have only a few spots left.  It's an unique trip and nothing like my past adventures.

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