Press Release - Los Banos Ranch
The True State of Rancho Los Banos and Mexico's Security
Los Banos Ranch Aug 12 2011
Could you tell us the true state of security in Mexico, Sonora and the region where the ranch is located?
It is completely natural to ask about security when traveling into Mexico. It is a source of constant bombardment in news outlets throughout the US. You would not be doing due diligence research without asking good questions such as yours.
It is the reality in Mexico that there is drug related violence clustered around a few "hot spots". Fortunately for us, our region has escaped the grasp of violence that engulfs these areas. Mexico is roughly the size of Western Europe, a very large land mass. We are hundreds of miles from any potential hot spot. In reality, Mexico is a very large country and, naturally, violence is not all-encompassing or black and white.
With one-hundred million citizens, most of whom live in peace, and over one million US citizens now calling Mexico home, in addition to hundreds of thousands of expats from Europe, Australia and Canada, most of the country remains the beautiful, secure nation it always was. Just in the last months, for example, Mexico was host to the FIFA U- 17 World Cup, in addition to the Pan-American games.
You can rest assured, however, that if we (ranch and region) were under threat of security risk, we would not be opening up the ranch to tourism. We would not risk your health and well-being for any reason. We do not, under any conditions, put profit over people. We have full confidence in the safety of our guests in the region and the ranch.
The statement we have in the middle of the "Location" page of the ranch website is perhaps the best way to describe our reality. While Mexico's northeast (bordering central Texas), Juarez and Michoacán are indeed hot spots, Sonora, and our northeast region in particular, remains one of Mexico's safest areas. In that sense we are very lucky. It cannot be emphasized enough, however, that US media outlets also do not offer a fair and accurate portrayal of the vast majority of the country. They have sensationalized a lot of what is going on. Most violence does not touch people who are not either involved in the drug trade or are fighting against it.
You will see that while at the ranch, you will not see another person(s), besides guests and employees of the ranch. We are bordered by mountains, deserts, canyons and neighboring ranches, offering a remote wilderness unmolested by strangers or uninvited guests. The vast majority of the people in this region are salt of the earth folks, working to make a living, peaceful, family-oriented.
We really do feel that you will be safer in our region, and at the ranch in particular, than in the state of Arizona, for example, which has, on average, more homicides per year than the state of Sonora, where we are located. Having said that, as a safety precaution, one that goes back twenty years or so, is the locking of gates to the entrance of our dirt roads. The grouping of ranches in the region locks up gates, with only the owners of such ranches having keys. Additionally, we have a copper mining operation in the area. To get to the ranch we must pass through security checkpoints that are run by the mine. Only ranches from the area are granted access.
For your added reassurance, most all past guests of ours have volunteered to act as references to any potential future guest. They are available to answer your safety questions, or any question for that matter. Please let us know if this is something that might interest you. Our testimonials page, in addition to Trip Advisor reviews of us, also brings up the perceived safety issue.
To us, the threat of violence in the region and inside the ranch is non-existent, a non-factor, just as it has been for decades. The lack of security in our region is a non-issue. Our region is very safe, and secure, as much as any in the United States. However, we do take precautions, as we have outlined above.
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