Out for a walk beside the Ottawa River in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada!
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Heading to Nova Scotia around August 1st.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Mexico RV Caravan Travel Day - Valle de Juarez to Uruapan, Michoacan

We were on the road yesterday at our planned 8:00am start time.

Our original schedule called for us to spend a night at Lago de Camécuaro National Park on the way to Uruapan, but because we took an extra couple of days to fix Garth's oil cooler line, we decided to make the park a lunch stop instead to make up one of those days and then head directly to Uruapan.

The first part of our drive began on what is arguably the worst stretch of highway in Mexico!

There is a little stretch of highway that avoids the town of San Jose del Gracia. It also crosses the border at this point between the state of Jalisco and the state of Michoacan. The state of Jalisco has sort of maintained their section of the road, but the state of Michoacan has not, and as soon as you cross the border, you enter the minefield...

Anybody want to play pothole roulette?


This is a major trucking route.

Fortunately, it only lasts for a few kms.

And then we were headed east towards Zamora.

Lots of nice scenery along the way.

The region around Zamora grows a lot of strawberries.

The giant strawberry at Zamora.

Copper pots for sale.

We arrived at Lago de Camécuaro National Park just before 11:00am. Including a short bathroom break, it had taken us almost 3 hours to drive 110 kms (68 miles). But, it was a nice drive and the roads were in overall decent condition. Lots of topes, and small towns to go through, but we find that much more interesting than major highways.

We paid the 20 pesos ($1.40 CAD, $1.10 USD) per person park entrance fee, and went for a stroll in the park.

Owenita and Aron.

Ruth, and a Montezuma Cypress tree.

Ruth, sitting in the first "C", Denise in the second one, and Bob.

It's a pretty spot.

We had some lunch and got back on the road at 1:00pm.

Poinsettias for sale.

This mechanic decorated the tree with empty oil bottles.

Watch for cows on the road!

We took the route that goes south through Cherán and Paracho. Not many RV'ers ever come this way, and in fact it's the first time that we have taken that route ourselves. The area has an interesting recent history involving how the townspeople took back their town from the bad guys. Here is a link to read more...

Scenery along the way.

Entering the town, we had to pass through a checkpoint. We were waved through, but a couple of rigs at the end were stopped. They just wanted to know how many of us there were, and where we were going.

Coming into the town, it looked like the road was closed.

I saw the sign that said "detour to Uruapan", but it specified cars only. We decided to make our way directly into town. Not sure if that was a good idea or not, but I had checkout out the route ahead of time on Gogle Streetview and I knew that heavy trucks took this route.

We think this was a celebration of 3 Kings Day.

We made it close to the center of the town, and there was a funeral procession. 
We all pulled off to the side until it passed.

It was a little crowded making our way through!

And then there was another checkpoint exiting town, but they weren't interested in us.

Entering the town of Paracho.

Paracho is the famous guitar making town. We plan to come back here during part of a day trip tomorrow. For now, we just drove through.

Guitar statue in Paracho, Michoacan.

Entering Uruapan.

The sign above says that Uruapan is the World Avocado Capital. We pulled into the Hotel Pie de la Sierra at about 3:10, pretty much exactly as planned. We will show you some pics of this place in another post. The RV parking area isn't spectacular, but the hotel and grounds are very nice.

Today, we will take the group into the Barranca del Cupatitzio National Park, located right in the city of Uruapan. Ruth and I have been there several times before, but it's a beautiful park and everybody always enjoys it.

Yesterday's drive, 209 kms (130 miles).

Cuisinart Cast Iron Cookware is on deal of the day today!

And in Canada...


  1. Beautiful water park. Those Cypress trees,are magnificent and also makes for a great backdrop for pictures. Nice to see pictures of people in their native garments.

    1. Yes it is a beautiful park and it is one of Mexico's smallest National Parks and yesterday we saw another one of the smallest National Parks and it is absolutely beautiful too. The cypress tress are definitely very impressive and the water is crystal clean and quite blue in colour.

      Michoacan has lots of small towns and villages where the locals, mostly women still wear their traditional clothing. They are very colourful and we enjoy seeing it too.

  2. Many statelines have bad roads. Who pays for what on what side and how far? Also, politics plays a roll. Guanajuato is a good example. On Hwy 57, crossing from SLP to Guanajuato, the highway deteriorates quickly. Why? The state government of Guanajuato is from the PAN party and the federal had been PRI.

    1. We totally understand about which state wants to pay, I think that happens even in Canada, and it doesn't even have to do with the provinces, it goes right down to the municipalities. It is just amazing that it happens on a major road here in Valle de Juárez that is used by the truckers. Good thing the worst part of the road is only a short distance. :-)

  3. Statelines up here in the states also....Utah drove my teeth down a couple of inches especially with the high speed limits with only two lanes...
    No way I could have driven the bad one's you just shared...I'd have to have full tanks of "Upsidaisium".....

    1. And it happens in Canada too but we have to admit for a "major" road this road was in pretty sad shape.

      We have learned that when you travel on roads like this you just go really slow, even the big trucks do. You would have been fine, and it was only a few kilometers long.

  4. The courage of the people of Cheran makes my hair stand on end..outstanding!

    1. It looks like it has worked well for them and I hope it continues that way for many years to come. There are also a couple of towns/villages in the Chiapas that work much the same way.


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