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Alta Vista, or Chalchihuites,[1] is a small Mesoamerican archaeological site in the Mexican state of Zacatecas and Durango, in the northwest of Mexico. The archaeological site of Alta Vista, at Chalchihuites, is located 137 miles to the northwest of the city of Zacatecas and 102 miles southeast of the city of Durango. Located to the west of Sombrerete in the northwestern corner of the Zacatecas state, it is believed that the site was a cultural oasis that was occupied more or less continuously from AD 100 to AD 1400.


It was a Teotihuacano ceremonial center lying on the Tropic of Cancer. It has a number of important features, including petroglyphs, a processional walkway and the Hall of Columns. It has some of the best evidence for astronomical alignments at an archaeological site but remains poorly known.

The archaeologist Manuel Gamio referred to Chalchihuites as a “culture of transition” between the Mesoamerican civilizations and the so-called Chichimeca hunter-gatherers who lived in the arid plateau of central Mexico. Chalchihuites and La Quemada were both outposts of Mesoamerican settlement in an ecological and cultural frontier area. However, in this transition zone, climatic changes caused continual shifts in the available resource base, discouraging most attempts at creating permanent settlements.

It is also known for a its large church that is located in its colonial center.


The climate is very hot during the summer months and cold in the winter. The site sits lonely in the badlands about four miles east of the town of Chalchihuites. It is also close to the colonial town of Zacatecas, which has a distinctive cathedral.


Three human heads were found in the garden of a government building in Chalchihuites in Zacatecas state at around 6 a.m on November 12,[when?] local time. They were found by a group of young students who were walking towards their school nearby. Police soon arrived at the scene and began an investigation which revealed that the heads were placed there by a group of armed men. The bodies which belonged to the heads were found about 1-kilometer (0.62 mi) away, at a local highway. Two messages were found next to the bodies indicating that the crimes were linked to a fight between two local drug cartels. It said the crimes were a revenge for the kidnap and murder of two men and a 3-year-old boy in September.[when?] Police identified the victims as Fabian Lopez, Lamberto Lopez Sanchez and Francisco Arce Meza. Lopez Sanchez was wanted by law enforcement over the murder of three individuals while Fabian Lopez was Lamberto's brother and also had a criminal record. It has been said[by whom?] that this impact will not only change Chalchihuites security but also its economy, since people fear that not so many tourists will go there due to the insecurity its causing to not only Chalchihuites, but to Mexico.

Notable residents[edit]

Coordinates: 23°28′34″N 103°52′50″W / 23.4761111211°N 103.880555566°W / 23.4761111211; -103.880555566


  1. ^ Valdez, Rubén (2010-06-18). "La Purisima de Los "Rodriguez"". El Sol de Zacatecas. Retrieved 2010-06-23. 
  2. ^ Dorian, Lilia (2008-06-01). "Ricardo Moreno's Video Biography". Televisa Deportes. Retrieved 2010-08-26. 
  3. ^ Luevanos, Fernando (2008-10-04). "Ricardo Moreno is one of the All time Greatest Punchers". Boxrec. Retrieved 2010-09-22. 
  4. ^ Hernández, Carlos; Jorge Sepúlveda Marin (2008-06-26). "Ricardo El Pajarito Moreno". Jornada. Retrieved 2010-09-22. 
  5. ^ Mulei, Alessandro (2006-08-26). "Members of Los Bukis". La Purísima. Retrieved 2010-09-22. 
  6. ^ Escobedo, Juan; Thomas Escobedo. "San Juan de Los Mier". Myxer. Retrieved 2010-06-23. 

External links[edit]