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Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

Alexandria, Virginia
Level Contributor
12 posts
40 reviews
Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

I'll be spending one month in Mexico, ending the trip during the First week of March by visiting 3 monarch preserves, staying at hotels in Zitacuaro and Angangueo. Since this is the tail end of the trip I am anxious about the weather at that time. I've read the warnings about the cold and to wear layers, but I hate to haul all those clothes around for 3 weeks. So how cold will it be in early March? Do I need a "puffy" jacket?, fleece?, a mere hoody?

Bus info from Mex city to Zitacuaro is easy, and from Angangueo to MC is also available. But having trouble identifying bus for Zitacuaro to Angangueo. Help?

9 replies to this topic
Zihuatanejo, Mexico
Level Contributor
386 posts
13 reviews
1. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

I will only comment about the clothes. I was there three weeks ago and it was very cold. I wore a lightweight compressible winter jacket over a sweater, a scarf and a winter hat, warm socks and good walking shoes. All of that takes very little space. The weather will be warmer at the time you are travelling, you have the option of buying sweaters, ponchos, wool hats, etc. on site, very inexpensive.

San Miguel de...
Destination Expert
for San Miguel de Allende, Central Mexico and Gulf Coast
Level Contributor
8,323 posts
129 reviews
2. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

When I went 10 years go, it was mostly overcast and there was light snow. So be prepared for any eventuality.

Transportation between Zitácuaro and Angangueo is local, so you won't find info online. However, you should use the search function as others have reported in detail on their visits in the past months and years.

Edited: 27 January 2016, 08:08
Toronto
Level Contributor
510 posts
7 reviews
3. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

There is a small local bus line that operates between Zitacuaro and Angangueo. They have a ticket counter in the Zitacuaro bus station. There are also numerous collectivos (small private passenger vans) available making the trip. Alternatively, hire a taxi -- always available at the Zitacuaro bus station or across the street at the Bodega "A" (mini Walmart).

Alexandria, Virginia
Level Contributor
12 posts
40 reviews
4. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

Thanks to all. My MC hotel has agreed to keep my cold weather clothes bag while I travel around warm weather Mexico by bus for a few weeks so that problem is solved. And now I know how to get from z to a.

Zihuatanejo, Mexico
Level Contributor
386 posts
13 reviews
5. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

Good, you will need a jacket for the bus, they keep the air cool. Enjoy!

Level Contributor
8 posts
12 reviews
6. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

I just went this past weekend. Amazing weather (no jacket required)... although I feel like seeing one of the reserves is more than enough. All three may be overkill. Have fun!

Alexandria, Virginia
Level Contributor
12 posts
40 reviews
7. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

Thanks for the update. Which reserve did you visit? Have the butterflies moved down the mountain some due to warmer weather. I'm trying to decide if I can handle the climb to ferrous Pelion.

Alexandria, Virginia
Level Contributor
12 posts
40 reviews
8. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

Update on my trip to see the monarchs. I took the bus from MC to Zitacuaro to visit Cerro Pelon, an arduous ride on a tiny horse (sore for 4 days), in cool weather (puffy, gloves), and an extremely difficult hike (when you come from 250 foot elevation) in early March. The weather didn't cooperate..cloudy, no sun, and so the monarchs didn't much leave their tree colonies. Because the weather looked bad for several more days, we cancelled our stay in Angangueo and returned to Mexico City. On March 6, I decided to give it another try and 4 of us paid a tour guide/driver $230 for a day trip to take us to the reserve near Valle de Bravo (Peidra Herrada), a 2.5 hour drive each way, a far shorter and easier ride on larger horses (we could have hiked it), a beautiful sunny day (but still puffy jackets, gloves, hat) with amazing monarch flight, and then a lunch overlooking the beautiful lake at Valle de Bravo. This reserve is far more crowded, mostly local Mexicans, and yet everyone is respectful on the trail and in the viewing area. If you only have a day, I'd highly recommend Peidra Herrada, which is never mentioned in the guidebooks. If you need a low key guide/driver I can recommend Enrique Nava, 52 55 3057 1722, enrique.tourist.guide@hotmail.com

Sadly, a massive cold front storm hit Mexico a few days later and we are waiting to hear how the monarchs fared.

Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
1 post
5 reviews
9. Re: Monarch Butterfly Trip: weather & bus

Hi, Your post (and the responses) have been very helpful for my husband and I. We currently are planning a family trip, for 6, to Zitacuaro (for Feb. 2017) and have 2 roadblocks we are hoping to get answers for. Your thoughts are appreciated.

1. How did your find your guide?

2. Were there USA traveler safety advisories? There are some now for the State of Mexico and Michoacan State. You traveled much of Mexico. Did you have any concerns?

Thank you again for any advice.

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