Fuerte River

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The Fuerte River is a river in the state of Sinaloa, in northwestern Mexico. It flows from headwaters in the Sierra Madre Occidental to the Pacific Ocean in the Gulf of California.

Sinaloa State of Mexico

Sinaloa, officially the Free and Sovereign State of Sinaloa, is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, compose the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided into 18 municipalities and its capital city is Culiacán Rosales.

Sierra Madre Occidental mountain range

The Sierra Madre Occidental is a major mountain range system of the North American Cordillera, that runs northwest–southeast through northwestern and western Mexico, and along the Gulf of California. The Sierra Madre is part of the American Cordillera, a chain of mountain ranges (cordillera) that consists of an almost continuous sequence of mountain ranges that form the western 'backbone' of North America, Central America, South America and West Antarctica.

Pacific Ocean Ocean between Asia and Australia in the west, the Americas in the east and Antarctica or the Southern Ocean in the south.

The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of Earth's oceanic divisions. It extends from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the Southern Ocean in the south and is bounded by Asia and Australia in the west and the Americas in the east.



It begins at the junction of the Rio Verde (also called the Rio San Miguel) and Urique River, in the Sierra Madre Occidental mountain range. It flows generally southwest for a distance of 290 kilometres (180 mi), [1] with its river mouth on the Gulf of California at Lechuguilla Island, 43 kilometres (27 mi) west of the city of Los Mochis.

The Urique River is a river of Mexico, forming part of the Copper Canyon.

River mouth end of a river

A river mouth is the part of a river where the river debouches into another river, a lake, a reservoir, a sea, or an ocean.

Gulf of California A gulf of the Pacific Ocean between the Baja peninsula and the Mexican mainland

The Gulf of California is a marginal sea of the Pacific Ocean that separates the Baja California Peninsula from the Mexican mainland. It is bordered by the states of Baja California, Baja California Sur, Sonora, and Sinaloa with a coastline of approximately 4,000 km (2,500 mi). Rivers which flow into the Gulf of California include the Colorado, Fuerte, Mayo, Sinaloa, Sonora, and the Yaqui. The gulf's surface area is about 160,000 km2 (62,000 sq mi). Depths range from fording at the estuary near Yuma, Arizona, to in excess of 3,000 meters (9,800 ft) in the deepest parts.

Miguel Hidalgo Dam impounds the river near the town of El Fuerte creating the state's largest reservoir, Embalse de Gustavo Diaz Ordaz. [2] The water is used extensively for agricultural irrigation in northern Sinaloa and southern Sonora states.

Dam A barrier that stops or restricts the flow of surface or underground streams

A dam is a barrier that stops or restricts the flow of water or underground streams. Reservoirs created by dams not only suppress floods but also provide water for activities such as irrigation, human consumption, industrial use, aquaculture, and navigability. Hydropower is often used in conjunction with dams to generate electricity. A dam can also be used to collect water or for storage of water which can be evenly distributed between locations. Dams generally serve the primary purpose of retaining water, while other structures such as floodgates or levees are used to manage or prevent water flow into specific land regions. The earliest known dam is the Jawa Dam in Jordan, dating to 3,000 BC.

El Fuerte, Sinaloa Place in Sinaloa, Mexico

El Fuerte is a city and El Fuerte Municipality its surrounding municipality in the northwestern Mexican state of Sinaloa. The city population reported in the 2010 census were 12,566 people.

Reservoir A storage space for fluids

A reservoir is, most commonly, an enlarged natural or artificial lake, pond or impoundment created using a dam or lock to store water.


The river is surrounded by large mango plantations which produce the fruits mainly for export to the United States. The former capitol of Sinaloa, Sinaloa de Leyva, is on the river in the Fuerte River Valley, in the Sierra Madre Occidental foothills.

Mango fruit, use Q3919027 for the species; Q161807 for the genus

Mangoes are juicy stone fruit (drupe) from numerous species of tropical trees belonging to the flowering plant genus Mangifera, cultivated mostly for their edible fruit.

Sinaloa de Leyva Place in Sinaloa, Mexico

Sinaloa de Leyva is a town in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. Its geographical location is 25°36′25″N107°33′18″W.

See also

Copper Canyon mountain range

Copper Canyon is a group of six distinct canyons in the Sierra Madre Occidental in the southwestern part of the state of Chihuahua in northwestern Mexico. The canyons were formed by six rivers that drain the western side of the Sierra Tarahumara. All six rivers merge into the Rio Fuerte and empty into the Gulf of California. The walls of the canyon are a copper/green color, which is where the name originates.

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Geography of Mexico

The geography of Mexico describes the geographic features of Mexico, a country in the Americas. Mexico is located at about 23° N and 102° W in the southern portion of North America. From its farthest land points, Mexico is a little over 3,200 km (2,000 mi) in length. Mexico is bounded to the north by the United States, to the west and south by the Pacific Ocean, to the east by the Gulf of Mexico, and to the southeast by Belize, Guatemala, and the Caribbean Sea. The northernmost constituent of Latin America, it is the most populous Spanish-speaking country in the world. Mexico is the world's 13th largest country, three times the size of Texas.

Basaseachic Falls waterfall

Basaseachic Falls on the Basaseachic River is the second-highest waterfall in Mexico, located in the Parque Nacional Basaseachic at Cañon Basaseachic in the Copper Canyon region of northwest Mexico, near Creel, Chihuahua. It is 246 meters (807 ft) tall, second in Mexico only to the Cascada de Piedra Volada.

Culiacán River river in Mexico

The Culiacán River is a river that is formed at the confluence of the Tamazula River and Humaya River, located in Culiacán city of Sinaloa state, in northwestern Mexico.

The Mexican golden trout is a species of fish in the Salmonidae family. The species is endemic to high-elevation headwaters of the Fuerte River, Sinaloa River, and Culiacán River drainages in the Sierra Madre Occidental in Mexico.

Bolsón de Mapimí

The Bolsón de Mapimí is an endorheic or internal drainage basin in which no rivers or streams drain to the sea but rather toward the center of the basin often terminating in swamps and ephemeral lakes. It is located in the center-north of the Mexican Plateau. The Basin is shared by the states of Durango, Coahuila, Chihuahua, and Zacatecas. It takes its name from Mapimí, a town in Durango.

North American Monsoon california monsoons

The North American monsoon, variously known as the Southwest monsoon, the Mexican monsoon, the New Mexican monsoon, or the Arizona monsoon, is a pattern of pronounced increase in thunderstorms and rainfall over large areas of the southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico, typically occurring between July and mid September. During the monsoon, thunderstorms are fueled by daytime heating and build up during the late afternoon-early evening. Typically, these storms dissipate by late night, and the next day starts out fair, with the cycle repeating daily. The monsoon typically loses its energy by mid-September when drier and cooler conditions are reestablished over the region. Geographically, the North American monsoon precipitation region is centered over the Sierra Madre Occidental in the Mexican states of Sinaloa, Durango, Sonora and Chihuahua.

The Rio San Bernardino, or San Bernardino River, begins in extreme southeastern Cochise County, Arizona, and is a tributary of the Bavispe River, in Sonora, Mexico.

Federal Highway 24 is a free part of the federal highways corridors. Fed. 24 is intended to cross the Sierra Madre Occidental from the area of Hidalgo del Parral, Chihuahua, on the east, to the area of Culiacán, Sinaloa, on the west. A limited central section of about 40 to 50 km is not yet completed or graded. This section lies between the villages of Los Frailes, Durango, on the east, and Soyatita, Sinaloa, on the west. Travel is possible through this area, where the road is not yet completed, on unimproved roads using high clearance two-wheel drive vehicles. The two unconnected segments that extend through Los Frailes and Soyatita are graded, but each segment is unpaved for about the last 75 km. The central gap in the highway is in the rugged mountains of the Sierra Madre Occidental. This uncompleted and unpaved portion of the road is not well signed, there are many intersections with other unimproved roads, and it is easy to get lost off the intended route of the highway. As noted later, getting lost may not be a safe proposition. Further, the unfinished segment on the west is at about 820 meters elevation at Soyatita. Just outside Los Frailes, the road coming from the east is at 2,750 meters elevation. The traveler crossing this gap will have to negotiate this dramatic change in elevation traveling a good deal of the way on unimproved dirt roads. Travel times in this central section can be quite slow.

The Sinaloa River is a river of Mexico. It runs across the state of Sinaloa from northeast to southwest, beginning in the Sierra Madre Occidental and emptying into the Gulf of California. Its flow is interrupted mostly by the Diaz Ordaz Dam which created Lake Baccarac in 1978. Below the dam, the flow of the river is largely diverted by an irrigation canal near the town of Sinaloa de Leyva.

<i>Salix taxifolia</i> species of plant

Salix taxifolia, the yewleaf or yew-leaf willow, is a species of willow native to all of southern Mexico, also Pacific Coast regions, north to Sinaloa, and in the south Pacific Coast of Mexico into central Guatemala. Scattered populations are also reported from northern Mexico and from the US states of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona.

The Río San Rodrigo is a stream in the state of Coahuila, Mexico, and is a tributary of the Rio Grande.

Federal Highway 36 is a free part of the federal highways corridors of Mexico. The highway construction is entirely within the state of Durango. The official start of the highway indicates it begins in the city of Topia then runs eastward to the town of Los Herrera. However, the paved and graded portion of the road does not go to Topia. Along the graded and paved road at a point about 96 km (60 mi) from Santiago de Papasquiaro a narrow and ungraded road leads off of Fed. 36 and extends 28 km (17 mi) to Topia, Durango.. The road from Fed. 36 to Topia is a narrow dirt road. The paved and graded road system continues past that intersection and has been extended year by year in a westward direction to the crest of the Sierra Madre Occidental and down the western slope of the Sierras, following the drainage of the Topia River, past Canales, Durango and then on to the end of construction in a dead end about 24 km. beyond Canales at the remote village of La Angostura. This village just happens to be the home of Ines Coronel Barreras, a cattle rancher and Sinaloa drug lord, who is the father of Emma Coronel Aispuro, the Mexican beauty queen and wife of the internationally notorious drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, currently indicted and in jail in the United States for drug related crimes. This terminus of the graded and paved road is only 32 km (20 mi) by direct line from Tamazula de Victoria, Durango. It is unknown whether there will be further road construction beyond La Angostura to Tamazula de Victoria in the coming years though that would be feasible from an engineering standpoint. Until the completion of the highway construction an alternative route which is ungraded branches off the paved road on the crest of the mountains and continues on to highways in the state of Sinaloa. Those routes are all noted below.

Course of the Colorado River

The Colorado River is a major river of the western United States and northwest Mexico in North America. Its headwaters are in the Rocky Mountains where La Poudre Pass Lake is its source. Located in north central Colorado it flows southwest through the Colorado Plateau country of western Colorado, southeastern Utah and northwestern Arizona where it flows through the Grand Canyon. It turns south near Las Vegas, Nevada, forming the Arizona–Nevada border in Lake Mead and the Arizona–California border a few miles below Davis Dam between Laughlin, Nevada and Needles, California California before entering Mexico in the Colorado Desert. Most of its waters are diverted into the Imperial Valley of Southern California. In Mexico its course forms the boundary between Sonora and Baja California before entering the Gulf of California. This article describes most of the major features along the river.

The Chinipas is a large river of Mexico. The Chinipas arises deep in the Sierra Madre Occidental in the state of Chihuahua, and then flows through long rugged canyon systems into the state of Sinaloa until it finally joins the main trunk of the Fuerte River in the western foothills of the Sierra Madre Occidental. The Fuerte River then flows westward over the western coastal plain of Sonora to the Pacific Ocean, emerging very near the port of Topolobampo.

Rio Cuchujaqui, Arroyo Cuchujaqui or Arroyo de Alamos, is a tributary river of the Fuerte River, in the Álamos Municipality of Sonora and in El Fuerte Municipality, Sinaloa, Mexico. It has its source in the Sierra de Álamos a range in the Sierra Madre Occidental in the Álamos Municipality of Sonora. Its mouth is at its confluence with the Fuerte River, just below Tehueco in Sinaloa. Its course is interrupted in Sinaloa by the Josefa Ortiz de Domínguez dam and its reservoir at 26°25′50″N108°42′24″W built between 1964 and 1970.


  1. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/221418/Fuerte-River Britannica website, accessed 17 September 2009. The total length is 530 km if the length of the Rio Verde is included.
  2. http://www.eosnap.com/?tag=fuerte-river Earth Snapshot website, accessed 17 September 2009

Coordinates: 25°48′N109°25′W / 25.800°N 109.417°W / 25.800; -109.417

Geographic coordinate system Coordinate system

A geographic coordinate system is a coordinate system that enables every location on Earth to be specified by a set of numbers, letters or symbols. The coordinates are often chosen such that one of the numbers represents a vertical position and two or three of the numbers represent a horizontal position; alternatively, a geographic position may be expressed in a combined three-dimensional Cartesian vector. A common choice of coordinates is latitude, longitude and elevation. To specify a location on a plane requires a map projection.