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Old 06-03-2010, 01:53 AM
4 posts, read 8,659 times
Reputation: 10


I am contemplating a possible move from Seattle to Boulder/ greater Denver to be closer to family and see more sunshine. I really like everything Seattle has to offer but the weather is getting to me a bit( upper 50's at the beginning of June and pouring rain this year)
Is there any expat Seattleite who did the same move on this forum? I would love to read feedbacks about differences between the two, if it was a good choice, any regrets, etc...I love the outdoors( hiking/ skiing/etc...) equally as I do going to a concert at a small club, hanging out downtown, shopping at a farmer's market. and my kids needs a good school district.
thanks in advance for the feedbacks.
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Old 06-03-2010, 11:36 AM
Location: Superior
722 posts, read 1,545,198 times
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A good school district shouldn't be a problem from what we've learned here and elsewhere. Can't comment on comparisons between there and Colorado.
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:16 PM
Location: Fort Collins, USA
1,362 posts, read 2,059,409 times
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I moved from Seattle to Boulder almost 30 years ago and it was a great move for me. I had two primary goals - to get away from the dreary Seattle climate and to live in a smaller city where I could pursue a walking lifestyle while also living next to the mountains. If you are considering Denver then you may not share the second goal. In fact, I can't really compare Seattle to Denver because I've never lived in the latter.

Shortly after I moved to Boulder my car died but I elected not to get another one for several years because I could get to my favorite hiking trails (including one that took me to the top of an 8000 foot peak), to the downtown mall, and to the CU campus on foot. If I needed to go to downtown Denver or the airport I could hop on an RTD bus. And of course there is a lot more sun in Boulder (but don't believe that 300 sunny days crap) and the summers are usually pretty hot (something I missed in Seattle).

Other stuff - I've never had children in the Boulder school district, but I've heard that the schools are very good. The Boulder Theater is probably my favorite venue for live music. If you want more musical options, Denver is only 30 miles away. Seattle's very green, but I'm a person who prefers arid and semiarid vegetation so it didn't bother me to leave the rainforest. Seattle has water all around but since most of it is too cold to swim in, I didn't miss that aspect much either. Seattle has more hills, which I like, but since Boulder is right next to the foothills there is a fair amount of relief from the eastern to western side of the city. My main gripes - early and late snowstorms (May 22 the first spring I was there), and the occassional arctic airmass in the winter. Also Boulder averages 80+ inches of snow per year (which I didn't mind at the time, but after 28 years of shovelling snow I have changed my tune).

Incidentally, although I live in Fort Collins now and it's a nice enough place, I doubt that this city could have lured me across the country the way Boulder did (even though I had no job lined up, knew absolutely nobody in Colorado, and had no place to live) , although I almost certainly would have left Seattle. And don't get me wrong - Seattle is a very interesting place but it just wasn't for me.
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Old 06-03-2010, 11:15 PM
4 posts, read 8,659 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks for the feedback.
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Old 06-05-2010, 08:26 AM
8 posts, read 45,102 times
Reputation: 10
The two Boulder high schools were ranked number 2 and 3 in the state in the latest Newsweek ranking, so the school district is solid, as you'd expect in a university town. Also, most of the biggest employers in Boulder County are high tech, such as IBM and Sun, so we have a lot of engineer types, always good for schools. It's not all hippies and trustafarians.
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Old 06-05-2010, 08:43 AM
Location: Ned CO @ 8300'
1,932 posts, read 3,888,686 times
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Originally Posted by Johnny.Sunshine View Post
biggest employers in Boulder County are high tech, such as IBM and Sun,
FYI, Sun no longer has a big presence in the area. After Oracle acquired them they laid off a large number of people and sold the old Storage Tech facility (they are in Broomfield County not Boulder).
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Old 06-05-2010, 05:25 PM
66 posts, read 196,416 times
Reputation: 78
I live in western Washington. I have never lived in the Denver area, but I am going to visit it soon. However, I have researched the Denver area quite a bit. My conclusion is that, in general, the Denver area is less expensive than the Seattle area, and the Denver area probably has a less competitive job market than the Seattle area. Apparently, Seattle is considered a more "sophisticated" city than Denver, and that, plus Seattle's ocean proximity, makes Seattle more desirable by most. They both have mountains nearby.

That being said, I am sure Denver is equally nice. My wife and I are considering possibly moving to Colorado someday ourselves, but we are not sure if we will ever move from western Washington. Western Washington is an awesome area!
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Old 06-17-2010, 01:38 PM
Location: Ned CO @ 8300'
1,932 posts, read 3,888,686 times
Reputation: 2651
Viper, it sounds like you are living where you are meant to be. Good for you!
Colorado is not for everyone, just as Washington is not for everyone. I have 2 good friends (both CO natives) who moved to WA several years ago. One lives near Seattle, one near Spokane. They have great jobs, beautiful homes (one lives on 5 acres), there are many things they enjoy about their lives there. But as hard as they have tried to love it, they want to move back to Colorado; they miss it too much. As soon as their boys graduate from high school they plan to move back.
C'est la vie!
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Old 06-19-2010, 01:59 PM
9 posts, read 27,216 times
Reputation: 13
I lived in Fort Collins and visited Boulder quite a bit a while back and now live in Seattle and am over the rain and gray skies. I was expecting a lot of rain since Seattle is known for this, but rainy, gloomy weather from Sept to mid June may be nice for some but is not for me. I love the outdoors so having to wear gortex from head to toe most of the year is a big con in my book.

I love the ocean and miss living in CA but it's just too crowded and too expensive and air quality is poor. So out of the three: CA, WA, and CO, CO has my vote and Im heading back soon. Lots of sun, outdoor activities, very walkable areas, friendly, well-educated neighbors, young crowd (not retirement age), dateable, low crime, clean fresh air - just no ocean.
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