Last updateFri, 12 Aug 2016 8am

Searching for ‘Cool Guachi’ and finding mud, weeds, mosquitoes, ticks ... and satisfaction

A few days ago my friend Mario Guerrero phoned me and mentioned some archaeological ruins indicated on an INEGI (Statistics and Geography Institute) topographical map.

“They’re close to San Juan de los Arcos,” he told me. “Why don’t we go take a look?”

Since another friend, archaeologist Chris Beekman, is an expert on the ruins in that area, I fired off an email to him in the United States with the coordinates of the spot Mario was interested in. “What’s there to see around this place?” I asked.

Beekman wrote back immediately, apparently both surprised and delighted. “I checked it out on Google Earth and I could see a circular pyramid right on top of that hill,” he replied. “It’s a previously unknown Guachimontón ... very cool!”

Now had no choice. Instead of well-known ruins, we had an unexplored Guachimontón awaiting us.

In no time at all our team of adventurers grew to seven and a dog, and off we went in search of what now had been dubbed “Cool Guachi.”

The hill we were looking for is located 35 kilometers southwest of Guadalajara and appeared easy to reach from the Selva Negra Nature Reserve, near the town of Ahuisculco. The only problem was the state of the road now that the rainy season is upon us: It looked an awful lot like a river and our high-clearance vehicles just barely got through.

At last we started our hike from a gorgeous meadow where beautiful white spider lilies were in bloom. The GPS pointing us in the direction of Cool Guachi, we walked along a wide path and after a mere 800 meters came upon a big obsidian mine and workshop – what a delightful surprise! 

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