Why Colorado Tokers Love Chupacabra

Chupacabra doesn't drain blood or energy, but it will suck your mouth dry.EXPAND
Chupacabra doesn't drain blood or energy, but it will suck your mouth dry.
Herbert Fuego
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Finding out that Santa Claus didn't exist hurt, but learning that there was no Loch Ness Monster or Sasquatch was crushing. The thought of a lone, final dinosaur of a creature in the wild — undiscovered by society — adds a spark to life that you'll never get back after it dies. A similar effect occurs the first time you get stiffed for an autograph by a celebrity, or when one of the Harlem Globetrotters hits on your friend's mom and she's totally down for it. (Never meet your heroes, kids.)

We didn't have Bigfoot or Nessie in Arizona, but we did have Chupacabra, the goat-sucker. Descriptions vary from lizard- to dog-like (the Southwestern version usually looks more like a dog), but Chupacabra is said to drink the blood of livestock, particularly goats, and sightings are most prevalent in Spanish-speaking countries. Although not as beloved in America as Bigfoot, Chupacabra might be right at home in the weed world, serving as the cleverly chosen name for a hybrid of Golden Goat and Gupta Kush. It's an even better word to hear out loud if your budtender has a thick Minnesota accent.

Bred by Colorado Seed Inc., Chupacabra's name is an accurate description of its origin story. Golden Goat is one of the most popular daytime "sativa" strains out there, especially in Colorado, keeping tokers loyal with a Sprite-like flavor and caffeinated high. Add Gupta Kush to the mix, though, and those potent Ghost OG and Blue Moonshine genetics suck the gusto out of Golden Goat's easygoing tropical background, turning their child into a toasty hybrid that keeps your brain stimulated and limbs liquefied. That even keel is preferable to the roller coaster of effects that hybrids can produce, and really hits the sweet spot between 6 and 9 p.m.

There have been Chupacabra sightings at Frosted Leaf, Helping Hands, Lightshade, Local Product of Colorado, the Lodge, Starbuds and Universal Herbs, with a wholesale grower named OTF supplying it to some of the dispensaries around town. I haven't yet found any versions that keep me coming back, but Chupacabra's hybrid high is good enough to keep seeking.

Looks: Carrying a quintessential chronic look, Chupacabra's buds are bright green, speckled with orange hairs, and usually have average trichome coverage. Structure can go either way, though most of the versions I've seen are on the compact side.

Smell: Chupacabra smells like a tamer Golden Goat, with a creamy layer hanging over the skunky funk, adding a welcome cheesy aspect to the mix. Hints of berries and spicy vanilla come at the end — thanks, likely, to the Gupta — providing an anchor for even more balance.

Flavor: As might be expected, those complex cheesy, skunky and berry notes are quieter in the flavor, with Chupacabra tasting more sour and spicy than anything else. But there are noticeable hints of orange and vanilla if you look for them.

Effects: A true hybrid, Chupacabra is best kept for days inside or tanning at the beach; it leaves my mind curious enough to read a book or people-watch, but the physical energy just isn't there. Such a mixture works well for a hangover or post-workout session, but might be too mentally stimulating for bedtime use.

Home grower's take: "Golden Goat flavor with a Gupta High. I don't have this one around anymore — don't think I grew Chupacabra more than once — but now is a good time to try it. From what I remember, it does all right in hotter temperatures, and you can pull it inside of two months if you really have to. Not that I'd recommend that if you want to taste more than citrus and throat-burning nutrients. I personally didn't think it was worth keeping around based on the yield and how much density it lost post-harvest, but that could've been my fault, too."

Is there a strain you'd like to see profiled? Email marijuana@westword.com.

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