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Chihuahua State

Region 4: Chihuahua State



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Chihuahua, Mexico’s largest state is located south of New Mexico and Texas and east of Sonora. With a population of over three million, its major industries are agriculture, mining, and the large assembly plants (maquiladoras) that dominate its most populous city, the now notorious border town of Ciudad Juárez. The state capital is Chihuahua City, about 235 miles south of the El Paso – Ciudad Juárez border.

The state of Chihuahua also includes the spectacular Barranca del Cobre (Copper Canyon) located between the high central plateau and the Sea of Cortés. This network of canyons cutting through the Sierra Madre totals about 900 miles in length. It is four times the area of Arizona’s Grand Canyon, and is one of the most biologically varied areas in Mexico. The Chihuahua al Pacifico railroad transverses the canyon system, reaching a maximum height of 7,874 feet (2,400 meters).

Chihuahua is known for having played a pivotal role in the Mexican Revolution, as it was the battleground between revolutionary forces led by Pancho Villa and federal forces.

Chihuahua State – Safety

Known as “the capital of murdered women” for the series of rape-murders that have scarred the city for over a decade, Ciudad Juárez has become synonymous with misogyny, exploitation, and sexual violence and, unsurprisingly, has very little tourist appeal (see Travel Safety for Women). It has one of the country’s highest crime rates, with drug trafficking and execution-style murders adding to its grim reputation. Other safety issues relevant to this area include heat and sun exposure as well as venomous snakes, in particular rattlesnakes (for more information, see Snake Bites.

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