Ruins in the Lava

On February 20, 1943 the volcano Paricutin began an eruption that lasted for 8 years and destroyed the village of San Juan Parangaricutiro.  It took a year for the lava to reach the village. While it was flowing, all of the villagers moved and rebuilt the town in a new location safe from the volcano and named it Neuvo San Juan Parangaricutiro.  The half covered church is all that remains of the village and climbing in the ruins has become a popular tourist destinations for the area.
We started our adventure to find the church buried in lave at the very small town of Anagahuan.

It was not easy to reach. Four wheel drive (or Dual-Sport motorcycle) is advised for the trip and it didn’t take long for the road to go from dirt to gravel to volcanic ash. Although I have to say volcanic ash is fluffy and the least painful thing to fall on.

I think we may have cut through someone’s ranch.

Cattle are terrible at giving directions, btw.

Volcanic ash is so FLUFFY!

When we finally arrived at the church we were greeted by a man offering to give us a tour and point towards a parking  area but we decided to come in from the backside of the site (which was a considerably more difficult approach as we later discovered.)

Once we started to climb we could see the ruins and people already climbing around them.

From the top you can see the  Paricutin volcano in the background.
The rough ride in and out and the climb through the lava rocks was treacherous but definitely worth it.  

After climbing around for a while we found the easy path out to the parking area. There are several stands set up with food, drink and handmade goods from the locals.  You can also take an ATV or horse ride to the volcano from here.

Matthew says “It’s Cerveza time!”

Four up on a four wheeler!

This is not an easy place to get to but worth the ride if you are willing.

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