Copper Canyon
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Mexico's Copper Canyon 

Land of the Tarahumara 


Not offered since 2010


Thank you all for making this program so successful and enjoyable!


with Barney T. Burns, Ph.D. to benefit Native Seeds/SEARCH 

Luxury motor coach rolling classroom roundtrip from Tucson, Arizona. Enjoy that amazing Train ride up to Barranca del Cobre!

Our first Copper Canyon tour with Barney in 2004 filled up quickly. The next, in 2007, filled in 2006. 

So, please don't delay your decision to join this spectacular learning experience in 2010.

Please call and let us help you with any questions so you don't miss this last one.

Please call for your brochure. Plan ahead and enjoy the anticipation!

Call or email Piet & Mary today for information at 520-887-2340 in Tucson.


This is a truly unique learning vacation. Don’t miss it!

We use the word unique for two specific reasons: there is no other trip like this one, and we do not expect to offer this again for some years. 

If this program is of interest, this is not the occasion to say "We'll go next time." 

Copper Canyon in Mexico’s northern Sierra Madre is known for its vast breathtaking beauty, rugged canyons, and impressive world-class railroad and for the people who call it home, the Tarahumara. 

You may have been to Copper Canyon before, but you don’t know the place and its people until you’ve traveled there with Dr. Barney T. Burns, who has worked and traded with the Tarahumara for nearly 40 years.  

This unique learning vacation begins in Tucson as we board our rolling classroom, a luxurious U.S. motor coach, to travel the scenic route between Tucson and the colonial village of El Fuerte, Sinaloa, founded in 1564. We’ll overnight right on the Sea of Cortez at San Carlos, Sonora. We’ll travel into Copper Canyon by the most dramatic rail journey in the Western hemisphere! Then we’ll overnight right at canyon’s edge at Divisadero. 

Enjoy three nights at Creel, where we’ll venture out to Tarahumara villages and view, learn and discuss Native Seeds/SEARCH projects and Tarahumara culture. Our motor coach will meet us again at Creel and continue with more adventures en route to Tucson along the east side of the Sierra Madre, via Casas Grandes, Chihuahua.  

Barney will discuss the Tarahumara culture in detail, plus the Yaqui, Mayo, Mennonite and Mormon people and Casas Grandes archaeology as we pass through Sonora, Sinaloa and Chihuahua. 

You will be amazed by Barney’s knowledge of Apache history in Mexico! Short walks on uneven ground in villages; no hiking required. 

What sets this program apart is the quality of your learning experience and the knowledge and affability of our leaders and interpreters, not to mention our guests! 

Reserving now; in past years, this trip has filled in advance. Call Mary & Piet at Baja’s Frontier Tours in Tucson (520-887-2340) for your detailed brochure today.  

The cost of the 2010 program is $3395 per person, double occupancy, including a $500 donation to NS/S. A limited number of single supplement/private rooms are available at an additional $655. Missed the 2007 trip? Don’t miss's the last one for quite some time!

You may have been to Copper Canyon before, but you don't know the place and its people until you've traveled there with Dr. Barney Burns, founder of Native Seeds/SEARCH, who's worked and traded with the Tarahumara for four decades.

Barney T. Burns & Mahina Drees

About Barney & Mahina...In 1983, they and two others founded Native Seeds/SEARCH in Tucson. Barney began his work with the Tarahumara in 1969 and with the Mayo and Yaqui in 1973. 

A decade later, Mahina joined Barney in expanding their importing of native crafts from these people. 

The purpose of Unknown Mexico, their wholesale folk art import business, is to express their passion for real-time cultural anthropology in ways that keep families and culture intact. 

They work diligently to preserve the crafts and culture of the native peoples of Northwestern Mexico by creating a market in the U.S. 

This, in turn, offers these people the opportunity to continue traditional paths of life, supporting themselves and their families in a small, though familiar way, with a source of cash income to supplement their subsistence agriculture, which provides no cash income. NS/S supports the farming.  

Mahina grew up in Toledo, Ohio, graduated from Antioch College and came to Tucson in 1974. She is a singer and songwriter. 

Barney grew up in Carlsbad, NM, studied at the University of Arizona, ultimately earning his Ph.D. in anthropology. 

He’s published on the Mormon colonization of northern Sonora, collected tree ring samples and documented old growth forest in Sonora and Chihuahua, and for 29 years assisted Neil Goodwin in the amazing ongoing study of the occupation of Sonora and Chihuahua by wild or free Chiricahua Apaches following the surrender of Geronimo. 

For a good read, check out Goodwin's Apache Diaries.  


This unique learning vacation is offered this one more time only. Don’t miss it!



Ask us for the detailed brochure for a day-by-day itinerary...

ALL INCLUDED: Roundtrip transportation in comfortable air-conditioned motor coach from Tucson (train and local transportation in Copper Canyon area); 8 hotel overnights; 13 of 25 meals; personally escorted by Barney T. Burns & Mahina Drees and Piet & Mary Van de Mark.

   Features of the 2010 program:

          q Eight nights comfortable hotel accommodations.

   q Travel to & from Tucson in luxury U.S. motor coach....our Rolling Classroom!

   q That world-famous train ride from tropical thorn scrub to high sierras, plus all local transportation in Copper Canyon.

q 13 of 25 selected and very enjoyable meals are included.

q Lots of knowledge, sightseeing and fun throughout, all in the context of BFT's informal learning vacation.

q Thrill to one of the World’s Greatest Train Rides...more tunnels and trestles than you can count or photograph!

q Tarahumara, Yaqui and Mayo cultural anthropology from the scholar who knows it best.

q  Learn Mormon, Mennonite and some amazing Apache history in Chihuahua.

q Archaeological tour of Paquimé and museum at Casas Grandes, Chihuahua.  

q Outstanding shopping for quality folk arts & crafts from the Tarahumara and other artists.

q Learning throughout from Barney T. Burns, Mahina Drees and other local interpreters.

q Personally produced and operated by Mary & Piet Van de Mark of Baja's Frontier Tours.  

q Support non-profit Native Seeds/SEARCH with your included $500 donation. 


Tucson’s Native Seeds/SEARCH conserves, distributes and documents the adapted and diverse varieties of agricultural seeds, their wild relatives and the role these seeds play in cultures of the American Southwest and Mexico. NS/S celebrates their 27th Anniversary in 2010!
Piet & Mary Van de Mark will personally produce and operate your tour. They are life members of Native Seeds/SEARCH. Piet founded Baja’s Frontier Tours in Tucson in 1966. Before joining BFT, Mary produced the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum's study tours for 14 years. BFT offers Personalized Natural and Cultural History learning vacations in Baja California and other selected spots in Mexico, plus a variety of handcrafted programs in Arizona and the American Southwest.  


We always answer all emails received. If you've emailed us and not received a reply, perhaps we didn't receive your email. Please try again by phone.


Contact Piet & Mary Van de Mark by phone:

520-887-2340 (Tucson, Arizona)

Toll Free: 1-800-726-7231  

©Baja's Frontier Tours LLC Tucson & Portal, Arizona 2003

March 11, 2017

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