Our tour of the Altar Valley picks up at the U.S.-Mexico border crossing at Sásabe, Sonora and Sasabe, Arizona. As already mentioned, in the 2000s and early 2010s the Altar Valley corridor was the principal entry way for undocumented immigrants headed into the United States. The Altar Valley is named after the town and river of the same name in Sonora. On the northern side of the international boundary the Altar Valley – which runs from the border to the extreme western suburbs of Tucson – has few population centers. In Arizona, the Altar Valley is primarily oriented north-to-south and surrounded by the Baboquivari Mountains to the west and the Sierrita, Cerro Colorado, Las Guijas and San Luis Mountains to the east. The smuggling of people and contraband in this narrow valley greatly concerns many local and national U.S. residents.
U.S.-Mexican, Latino, and Border Historian