Popularized by Chris McDougall’s best-selling book Born to Run (2009), the Copper Canyon Ultramarathon or “Ultramaraton Caballo Blanco” was established in 2003 by extreme runner Micah True (his nickname was Caballo Blanco, or “White Horse”). True (who died in 2012) wanted to draw attention to the plight of the impoverished Rarámuri in the region, and the 80km race, though now open to anyone, still provides food vouchers and blankets to Rarámuri runners. In large part thanks to the book, the race has become a legend in the world of ultra-running, attracting around a hundred international runners each year. Usually held in February in Urique, in 2015 the race was cancelled due to concerns about drug-related gang violence in the valley – check norawas.org for the latest.

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