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Old 09-30-2016, 11:36 PM
Location: Silicon Valley
18,666 posts, read 25,852,165 times
Reputation: 37427


Originally Posted by WSPHXPELON View Post
Sorry for reviving a zombie thread, but I'm curious if anyone can comment on the quality of life in Arcata vs. Crescent City vs. Eureka?
I live in Crescent City now - originally from the SF Bay Area, moved to Redding to retire, too hot, moved to Crescent City. I've also checked out Eureka and Arcata, thinking I'd want to move there because there is better shopping and more to do there than here in CC.

But, I didn't like it at all. I remember visiting Arcata when I was just out of high school, and very much into smoking pot LOL. Well, the town never stopped smoking pot. It's a large part of the culture and the economy there - lots of marijuana farmers and smokers.

So, you'll smell pot everywhere, and a good portion of the population is high all the time. And, it's very granola. Both Arcata and Eureka are the epitome of granola.

Arcata has the university, and prides itself on not having any of the fast food chains in town. But, it's very run down and dirty, and I've never seen so many pit bulls being walked around at the same time - and by very granola-dressed young women - in my life.

The houses just looked like they're rotting away and aren't maintained - like there is no pride in ownership, even though it's most likely a very educated town. Or they're all just too high to be motivated to paint their houses? I don't know.

And lots and lots of homeless. That area is full of advocates and resources for homeless, and, in my opinion, it perpetuates the problem - if you build it they will come, is my thinking. I think, for instance, some homeless come to Crescent City, where the locals aren't interested (for the most part) in feeding a homeless population, so I think many of them go where it's easier to be homeless, which would be Eureka/Arcata.

Eureka is busier and has more businesses and factory type properties. And even more homeless.

There are a lot of beautiful old Victorian homes. And decent entertainment and shopping.

But, I couldn't move there. I was really excited about the idea of having cool temps, which I love here, but more shopping and more to do. But, I would never move there. I don't have anything against people who want to smoke pot or work toward legalizing it, etc. But, the grower culture is not attractive to me. And I got over the granola, hippy thing and being high all the time just a few years after I graduated high school back in 1974.

And I remember thinking the town was really quaint back then - when I went through Arcata in 1974. But, now it looks like nobody every painted any of the houses since then, and they've all just been getting high since then.

Anyway, it's got a lot going for it as far as cool temps, mild winters, good shopping, decent entertainment, but you'd have to be okay with the grower, granola culture, lots of homeless and pit bulls, too. I'm just not. There's just something off and creepy about it to me. And it's so isolated, that I think it would be easy to forget the rest of the state/country/world isn't like that LOL.

Some love it. I just don't.
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Old 10-01-2016, 12:00 AM
Location: Silicon Valley
18,666 posts, read 25,852,165 times
Reputation: 37427
I didn't answer your question about Crescent City. I've been here almost 2 years and I'm just thinking I'll probably stay here. It's missing a lot that I like, such as better shopping and entertainment. We've got a Walmart and a Home Depot and a couple pharmacy stores like Rite Aid, Walgreens, and a CVS is being built. Grocery Outlet, Safeway, and natural food store. But, that's about it. And there isn't better shopping, really, any closer than 2 hours away - either Eureka or Grants Pass.

As far as entertainment - a small cinema. No recreation department classes. No bus tours you can sign up for. The senior center's idea of a good time is pinochle - guaranteed to make you feel old LOL.

So, that stuff I really miss.

But, on the other hand, I can go to the beaches and parks with my dog off-leash without anyone bothering me, and often with no other people or just a few other people there. There is parking everywhere, and not one metered parking spot in town. No traffic. And it's beautiful. It never snows and never gets too hot.

But, it's really isolated. And I've never seen so many people with missing front teeth in my life.

So, I go back and forth about which I'd want to compromise on - do I care more about the lack of dog leash nazis on the beach, or having a recreation department catalogue with lots of intriguing things to do?

I think Crescent City is a great affordable place for a home base - as long as you love living in a retreat (peaceful, beautiful, unexciting). And then travel to places with more stuff to do or nicer winter weather - we get intense monsoon storms here.

The peace and beauty, and live and let live attitude of the population is growing on me. The trick for me is to find a way to afford to take some overnight trips somewhere to see a show or just get an infusion of culture once in a while. Because retreats, as beautiful and peaceful as they are - can get boooorrrrrriiiiiiinnnnnnngggggg! LOL.

Another note, any of the affordable northern CA towns are majority white, and Republican. And there are a lot of religious types who will approach you to convert you, too. I'm used to it now, and I just strike up a friendly conversation with them and stay polite. None of them have been pushy. But, just yesterday, two young Mormon men gave me a bible when I was out walking my dog LOL. The last time I went to the car dealer and got tires put on my truck, a young woman gave me a Jehovah's Witness flyer. And, actually another time at the same car dealer when I went to get my truck smogged, I think, a different older woman gave me a Jehovah's Witness flyer.... Nobody was overly pushy.

But, I have found, by moving to Redding and now here, that this is what you get when you find affordable towns in northern CA - white, Republican, religions that want to save you, missing teeth, and oddly enough, lots of pot smoking thrown in. Eureka/Arcata are a bit different, in that their religion is mainly pot, they vote mainly Democrat or probably Green Party, and most still have their teeth. But, they're all a bit weird LOL.
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Old 10-01-2016, 12:42 PM
929 posts, read 1,046,912 times
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Thanks so much for taking the time to explain your insight, it's greatly appreciated!! I still have to wait to retire before I can actually move, but will take this great info into consideration while planning and making our decisions, thanks again!!
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Old 10-01-2016, 02:43 PM
Location: State of Transition
85,939 posts, read 79,124,938 times
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Originally Posted by WSPHXPELON View Post
Thanks so much for taking the time to explain your insight, it's greatly appreciated!! I still have to wait to retire before I can actually move, but will take this great info into consideration while planning and making our decisions, thanks again!!
In the meantime, while waiting to retire, you can visit, maybe a couple of times in different seasons, to get a feel for these places, and to enjoy the redwood parks, too. If you haven't seen them, they'll blow your mind. You can drive the Avenue of the Giants (look it up), and enjoy exploring a special world.
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Old 10-01-2016, 08:48 PM
9,533 posts, read 9,088,941 times
Reputation: 20853
It is important that people thinking of moving to Humboldt County, understand a few things.

When I grew up there a a third generation resident on both sides of my family, Logging and Fishing were the big industries. Loggers and mill workers were very well paid. Then the environmentalists moved in and demanded that they quit logging so the city people did not have to see cut forests, calling all redwoods old growth trees thousands of years old. Wrong in fact the majority of the area, had already been cut 2 or three times. They had tree sitters, and spike drivers on private lands that just ended up along with demands for logging to stop, and it was stopped. Suddenly there were no jobs to be had that paid any kind of a decent living. Commercial fishing dried up, and that industry more or less collapsed.

Redwood national park was then made to show old growth forests. Only thing is, the first thing they had to do was take out the logging roads all over it, that were used to haul out the logs that were harvested. They had been left waiting for the next harvest that never came, and access for fire prevention and fire fighting as needed. They took out the roads, and planted new trees and undergrowth to hide the fact they had ever been there.

Today Humboldt County along with Trinity County and Mendocino County, are known as the Emerald Triangle, the heart of the U.S. Marijuana growing industry. Here is some information on it.

California Marijuana Legalization 2016: Growers And Officials Struggle Over Making Pot Farms Environmentally Friendly

What sets Arcata apart is that the growers have moved inside. A lot of t he homes in town and it is in the hundreds as of last report, have been turned into grow houses, where they grow Marijuana inside the homes. Arcata put a heavy tax, on the extra high amount of electricity used to grow pot inside.

Calif. town pushes back against industrial pot growers

Several posters have noted, that you can smell Marijuana all over town. It is not the users that generate this smell, it is the growers that generate it. You are smelling growing Marijuana, not dried and smoked pot. Note that USAToday used the Arcata nickname---POT TOWN---so named for all the Marijuana that is grown in the town, in houses all over town.

The biggest Humboldt cultural event each year.

Humboldt Hemp Fest – Mateel Community Center
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