Several years ago, I heard about a vast forest located southeast of Tapalpa.
The place is called Mazati after the Nahuatl word for deer, mazatl. For many years, it was the site of intensive logging, but today is a protected area surrounded by an eco-friendly housing development.
I spent a night camping in Mazati in May, 2015, on the shore of a small lagoon. The sunset was spectacular and the silence of the night was broken only by the mournful cries of whippoorwills.
At night I was surprised to see the temperature plummet down to nine degrees! Even though the altitude was 2,400 meters, this was not a temperature I was expecting during the hottest month of the year.
The next morning, a friend who knows Mazati took me around to see some rocks – Tapalpa is famed for is massive rocks. You have Las Piedrotas (The Great Rocks), La Piedra Gorda (The Fat Rock) and Los Frailes (the Friars), just for a start, but the morning after my campout, I was treated to a view of a truly spectacular rock I had never heard of: La Piedra Agujerada, the Holey Rock.