This is the home-made ferry used to carry US tourists into Mexico and residents of Boquillas del Carmen, Coahuila, into th US for work. Unfortunately, this unofficial border crossing was closed in the aftermath of 9/11. This puts a tremendous hardship on the residents of Boquillas del Carmen who are dependent on access to the National Park for work and on cross-river tourism for income. Now, Mexicans wade across the river to the U.S. side at favorite tourist spots to sell tourist trinkets. Once a park ranger or an immigration official approaches, they just wade back across the river. How that improves homeland security, I do not know. (Taken in December 1997)
Update January 2011: Mexicans now leave small displays with one or two
dozen items close to the river with a recycled plastic bottle for
"donations." Sellers come across the river on horseback on a
regular basis to check on their displays and to pick up the money.
According to press reports, the small border crossing at Boquillas
will be reopened in April 2012.