Definitions

Nazas

Nazas

Nazas, river, c.180 mi (290 km) long, rising in the Sierra Madre Occidental, Durango state, N Mexico, and flowing generally east to disappear into the ground near Torreón. During the wet season it usually inundates a vast desert basin and sometimes reaches Laguna de Mayran. With its control dams, it provides water for irrigating the Laguna dist.
The Nazas River is located in the North of Mexico and is shared by the States of Coahuila and Durango. It is only 560 km in length (about 250 miles), but irrigates an area of 71,906 km² in the middle of the deserts of Coahuila and Durango states. The Nazas is also nurtured by the San Juan, Ramos, Potreritos, del Oro, Nazas, Santiago, Tepehuanes and Peñón Blanco rivers. The river starts at the Mexican Sierra Madre Occidental.

It takes its name when the Spaniards during the conquest of Mexico saw the original inhabitants of the shore of the river fishing with some artifacts like baskets which they calls " nazas" , for that reason it was known " river of nazas".

The river is the divider between the cities of Gómez Palacio in Durango and Torreón in Coahuila. The town of Torreón is named after a tower that was built in the area by Don Leonardo Zuloaga's administrator, Pedro Santa Cruz, to observe the water level of the Nazas from afar

The Nazas has served as one of the most important natural resources enabling development in the Lagunera Region since the middle of the 19th century.

All of its waters are locked in the Francisco Zarco and Lazaro Cardenas dams, both located in Durango, which have significantly reduced the once mighty flow of the river. However, the state of Coahuila gets it annual share by mutual agreement between the state governments. Indeed, on its way, it fills smaller water bodies like the Palmito dam (in Torreon, Coahuila) and the Santiaguillo lagoons. The river ends in the Mayran and the Caiman Lakes in the Tlahualilo region.

There is an amateur annual kayak competition from Rodeo to Lerdo, both towns, in the State of Durango.

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