Author Topic: Colorado question/new location recommendations  (Read 358 times)

rahby1us

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Colorado question/new location recommendations
« on: July 07, 2018, 12:32:31 AM »
Hi all,

DW and I are starting the process of moving to CO. We're lucky to be completely free to choose wherever we'd like so I'm hoping to get some input from the community. I'll provide some background info and then leave it up to y'all to offer any input that you might find relevant!

We're both 31 and will be moving from a large city in the SE. No kids but planning on a couple in the next few years. Traffic is terrible where we are, but other than that we have things pretty good. We love the outdoors and close proximity recreation (hiking, camping, biking, kayaking are all big on our list and trout fishing and hunting are huge passions of mine). We'd like to avoid moving from one giant city to another, mostly due to traffic. My wife is also pretty sensitive to extreme cold and long long winters. We're ok with a winter and snow, but a town like Breckenridge for ex. where the avg low in Jan is 0 and Aug avg low is still all the way down at 38 is way too cold. I guess the last couple considerations would be reasonable cost of living and within 2 hours to a major airport as all our family is on the east coast. We're currently FIRE but i'm open to working again for a couple years to grab health insurance for kids and to maintain the 'stashe (or to upgrade all my outdoor gear which is being held together with duct taple and super glue from constant use!) There are a couple areas we like, but i don't want to lead the conversation, i'd rather hear what people have to say.

Lastly if there is a total homerun town/place in another city out west we would at least consider it, but CO has felt like the right balance with the major airport and climate.


the_fixer

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2018, 04:58:48 AM »
Fort Collins CO
If you want to be outside of town and away from people look at houses around horsetooth lake. It is a short drive to town but feels like you are really in the mountains and away from the rat race

If you want to ride a bike everywhere and what to be where everything is happening look to old town

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Lyons Colorado, I grew up there and it is one of my favorite towns, small and weird / cool. Check out Laverne Johnson park on the west side of town it has so much to do.

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Around Boulder

Boulder is expensive and traffic is bad but it is a nice place, you can look 10 mins away at superior or Broomfield to get a more affordable place and have.mass transit options as well as outdoor activities and everything you could want in walking distance.

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Highlands Ranch

I know people are going to hate on this option but it is the best place we have lived in the Denver metro area and we have lived pretty much everywhere.

Look at a neighborhood called firelight. There is a Walgreens, King Soopers and other stuff and you can get to pretty much everything on a bike path. And best of all there are miles and miles of my bike trails and hiking trails surrounding the back side of the neighborhood.

Yes the houses are cookie cutter but it is really a great neighborhood. Load up a few bikes and ride around the paths through the neighborhood and check out the hiking trails it is an amazingly built community.

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Golden Colorado

I really like Golden, it is expensive but lots to do


Good luck in your search!



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YttriumNitrate

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2018, 07:06:15 AM »
We're ok with a winter and snow, but a town like Breckenridge for ex. where the avg low in Jan is 0 and Aug avg low is still all the way down at 38 is way too cold.
Unless you are nocturnal, I wouldn't worry too much about the lows. Daily 30+ degree temperature swings are quite common, and when I lived in Colorado I cared much more about the temperature at 2 pm than the temp at 2 am.

waltworks

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2018, 09:22:14 PM »
Places in CO with great access to recreation (without having to drive a decent distance) are all going to be super pricey (Boulder, Golden, Summit/Eagle counties) and/or have horrible traffic (Boulder/Denver metro area is a giant sprawling shitshow at this point).

I'd live in Grand Junction, personally. Not crazy cold. Kinda hot in summer but easy to escape up on Grand Mesa. Great access to pretty much any outdoor sports 4 seasons of the year (close enough to both Moab and Eagle county for day trips). Not stupid expensive, though not as cheap as it used to be. Negligible traffic issues. Great hunting and fishing. You're a solid 5 hours from DIA, though you can fly out of GJ to a few places. I don't know much about schools, which will probably become a major consideration at some point.

The Front Range in general blew up to the point of not being worth it about a decade ago. YMMV, of course, but we bailed on Boulder in 2012 and when we go back to visit we laugh at people who ask us when we're moving back. Yeah, I'd love to move back to constant traffic jams and sharing trails with 10,000 other people...

-W
« Last Edit: July 07, 2018, 09:28:01 PM by waltworks »

patchyfacialhair

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2018, 08:59:22 AM »
Colorado Springs checks all your boxes and it's not as expensive as the Denver metro area (but prices keep going up!). It's great for families.

Some people have pause because it's generally more right-leaning rather than left-leaning politically, but it's easy to find like minded people on either side.

Very easy access to mountains without the annoyances of actually living in the mountains.
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chaskavitch

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2018, 09:42:36 AM »
I'd agree that unless you live in Breck or another ski town, the average low is somewhat misleading.  There are days in January where it's 60 degrees out.  The nights do get cold, but the climate is VERY different from anywhere with humidity.  Our heat does not persist once the sun goes down.  Right now the evenings are still warm, because our high temp is 95-100 F during the day, but when I wake up at 530 am, it's usually 60 F out. 

I've lived in Colorado Springs and Fort Collins for the last 25 years, and I'd say yearly, we have maybe two snowfalls that persist longer than two or three days.  Generally the sun melts it all off within 24 hours of snowfall.  Again, that's along the Front Range/I25 corridor.  If you're up in the mountains, it's a different story.

There are some smaller towns in the foothills region between Fort Collins and Boulder that are possibly more affordable, but the main towns in this area - Fort Collins, Loveland, Longmont, Boulder, Golden, even Greeley and Windsor - are getting much more expensive than they used to be.  Generally I really like Fort Collins.  It's very bikeable, not too much of a drive to the mountains or foothills for hiking or camping, lots of lakes/rivers/streams (for Colorado anyway), etc.  There is a lot of new home construction going on, though, so there are a large number of people moving here and it's definitely getting more crowded.  It's still tiny compared to any big city on the East coast, I'd imagine.

waltworks

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2018, 08:03:17 PM »
Colorado Springs is a pretty great place for outdoors access (with the exception of skiing).

Another idea: Salida. It's not that cold. It has river stuff, trails, and skiing out the door. Not stupidly expensive. Relatively easy to get to DIA (ok, 4 hours or so, but not terrible).

You will need your own employment or to be FI, there are not really jobs. No idea on school quality as I haven't been there since before I had kids and thought about that sort of thing.

-W

APowers

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Re: Colorado question/new location recommendations
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2018, 09:35:55 PM »
Colorado Springs is pretty great. The only time there's really traffic is 8am and 6pm, there are TONS of outdoor stuff to do in a reasonable day-trip range, it's only an hour to Denver if you miss the "big city", and we have our own airport. It feels like a big city to me, because we moved here from a town of 20k  (Springs is ~300k). But it's nowhere near the big city feel that Denver has. And we're on a major freeway corridor, so travel is generally pretty easy.