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Old 08-13-2018, 04:41 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
6,150 posts, read 9,436,212 times
Reputation: 8810

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Quote:
Originally Posted by beezle1 View Post
FYI, depending on where you travel, you may find you get better flights out of Denver instead if COS. If you end up on the north side of town, commuting up Hwy 83 to C470 (toll) is pretty easy to get to DIA.
I wouldn't recommend E-470 to anybody in a rental car. The toll from Parker Road to the Airport is around $6 and the rental car companies will likely add additional fees on top of that (and you'll REALLY get screwed if you don't opt-in to their toll policy).
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Old 08-13-2018, 05:26 PM
 
20,304 posts, read 37,784,136 times
Reputation: 18081
When you visit remember to drink a lot of water, the elevation will dry you as bad as Phoenix; the altitude also takes a toll. We usually tell visitors to bring a wide brim hat, sunscreen, nasal spray, lip balm and sunglasses, etc, to protect against the sun since the thinner air lets through more of the damaging rays.
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Old 08-13-2018, 05:44 PM
 
531 posts, read 943,775 times
Reputation: 626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
When you visit remember to drink a lot of water, the elevation will dry you as bad as Phoenix; the altitude also takes a toll. We usually tell visitors to bring a wide brim hat, sunscreen, nasal spray, lip balm and sunglasses, etc, to protect against the sun since the thinner air lets through more of the damaging rays.
Thanks, Mike...that's actually a great reminder for me. I'm pale-skinned so would definitely burn rather than tan. Lip balm is a constant in my life already, though, so that's something I'm well-prepped for!
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Old 08-13-2018, 07:21 PM
Status: "Goodbye fall ... hello winter" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Manitou Springs
924 posts, read 1,030,423 times
Reputation: 810
Even though we've grown quite a bit in recent years, as Mike says ... traffic is still mellower than you'd think compared to Denver and other large cities. Our airport is easy and quick to get to, especially if you end up in the S, SW, or W side of town.

Trails are everywhere and easily accessible. You may want to consider Garden of the Gods for your hike if you want to take it easy. Do a search ... there are quite a few websites with local trail information.

The west side and Manitou Springs contain older neighborhoods, some with cute and/or funky (or both!) little bungalows. Manitou Springs is quite busy in the summer, but depending on where you live, you can be somewhat away from the tourist madness. Old Colorado City gets busy too.

Not sure if anyone has mentioned it, but this is a good place to start for property searching: https://ppar.com/
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Old 08-25-2018, 10:45 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
27 posts, read 8,913 times
Reputation: 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xica_da_Silva View Post
Hi all,

After having done some research, Colorado Springs seems like it might be a good fit for me to make a move this fall (from Phoenix). I'm into healthy lifestyle- hiking and whatever winter sports I can learn to keep me outdoors (particularly if it's snow-shoeing or cross-country skiing on nearby trails). I'm interested in hearing about any neighborhoods or surrounding towns that I should check out that would fit the following bill:

1) plentiful hiking trails within 5-10 minute drive, but am a little afraid of fires/flooding potential- how does one know risk level when looking at homes or neighborhoods? Looks like Manitou Springs and Western Colorado Springs might fit the bill for being close to nature, but are these very vulnerable? Or does it have more to do with the particular house and whatever clearing's been done around it?
2) houses within the range of $250K-325K (might be able to pay cash but not sure that's wise in this environment). Would prefer single home, 3 bed/2 bath...1500-1700 sq. ft. I love historic bungalows and ranches, so would prefer to buy a home and update if need be (as long as it's nothing major).
3) not too far from the airport- my job entails 80% travel.
4) not too far from civilization; need to make some trips to grocery store, Home Depot, etc.
5) not so much snow that it will prevent me from getting to the airport/work, but I don't mind a bit snow, as long as it doesn't stick around forever.
6) I get along with almost everyone...have a general live-and-let-live attitude- but don't want to deal with judgmental religious people looking down on me. So, libertarian or socially liberal neighborhoods would probably be better.

Also, any particularly good hikes I can check out while there to give me a taste of what it's like?

PS. Here in Phoenix, even though trails can be crowded on weekends, I've always found the further you're willing to hike into the trails, the less crowded...does Colorado Springs have trails like this where you can get away from it all by hiking deeper into the mountains? Hope so!

Any thoughts?

Thanks,

XicadaSilva
Hi Xica da Silva,

You will love it in Colorado Springs! Lots of hiking and exploring all across the front range!
As others have mentioned, you can be various places in the Springs and still easily access mountains, hikes, airport etc etc

1. Depending on the area, you will def want to do your homework regarding soil/land/floodzones and previous history of the area in relation to the home (s) you look at.

2. OCC/Manitou/Southwest have older homes (Bungalow style), however, if you want to look in these areas you will need to think more on the high end of your budget as the average price range of a home in these areas is higher..

As of July 2018 these are the median price ranges

Median Price range in Manitou is $445,500
Median Price range in West area is $297,500
Median Price range in SouthWest is $357,000
Median Price range in Old Colorado City (OCC) is $325,000
Median Price range in Fountain/Security (someone in the thread mentioned that area) is $279,000
- However, these homes in the older areas are closer to the 1950's-1980's ...so, not exactly Bungalow style

All areas are close enough to everything hikes, trails, shopping, civilization, airport etc etc ...Colorado Springs is pretty compact, we actually have very little space/land remaining...hence developments building up, instead of out ...and of course squeezing newer housing complexes as tight as they can together

3. Great thing about snow here, is it melts off quickly, due to Colorado Springs having almost as many days of sunshine as the Sunshine state (FL).

Have fun on your search and welcome to the best City to live in the U.S.
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Old 08-25-2018, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
18,883 posts, read 8,860,357 times
Reputation: 18290
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xica_da_Silva View Post
Hi all,

After having done some research, Colorado Springs seems like it might be a good fit for me to make a move this fall (from Phoenix). I'm into healthy lifestyle- hiking and whatever winter sports I can learn to keep me outdoors (particularly if it's snow-shoeing or cross-country skiing on nearby trails). I'm interested in hearing about any neighborhoods or surrounding towns that I should check out that would fit the following bill:

1) plentiful hiking trails within 5-10 minute drive, but am a little afraid of fires/flooding potential- how does one know risk level when looking at homes or neighborhoods? Looks like Manitou Springs and Western Colorado Springs might fit the bill for being close to nature, but are these very vulnerable? Or does it have more to do with the particular house and whatever clearing's been done around it?
2) houses within the range of $250K-325K (might be able to pay cash but not sure that's wise in this environment). Would prefer single home, 3 bed/2 bath...1500-1700 sq. ft. I love historic bungalows and ranches, so would prefer to buy a home and update if need be (as long as it's nothing major).
3) not too far from the airport- my job entails 80% travel.
4) not too far from civilization; need to make some trips to grocery store, Home Depot, etc.
5) not so much snow that it will prevent me from getting to the airport/work, but I don't mind a bit snow, as long as it doesn't stick around forever.
6) I get along with almost everyone...have a general live-and-let-live attitude- but don't want to deal with judgmental religious people looking down on me. So, libertarian or socially liberal neighborhoods would probably be better.

Also, any particularly good hikes I can check out while there to give me a taste of what it's like?

PS. Here in Phoenix, even though trails can be crowded on weekends, I've always found the further you're willing to hike into the trails, the less crowded...does Colorado Springs have trails like this where you can get away from it all by hiking deeper into the mountains? Hope so!

Any thoughts?

Thanks,

XicadaSilva
Before I start, I have to warn you that I've become very negative about Colorado Springs, so take what I say with that warning.

The worst part about Colo Springs is the risk of forest/wildfires. In the big fires of a few years ago, all of Manitou was evacuated when fire threatened to simply wipe that whole area out. And when you get substantial fires further west, we pay a price for that, too -- terribly polluted air. There have been several days this month when I could not even see Pikes Peak from downtown.

There are houses in your price range, including single family and townhouses. You need to explore here, however. Many of what you are describing as bungalows are in very run-down old sections of the city.

Traffic is not bad here...despite what some hicks will tell you. I wouldn't worry about travel to and from the airport from almost any place in the city. However, destinations are limited from the airport, and many of my friends travel to Denver's airport instead...and that's a looooooooooong haul.

I've been here a little over 8 years. This is strip mall heaven, with most all of the national vendors present. However, if you like shopping at -- for example -- Macys, the local Macys is rather pathetic, so I always go to Park Meadows just south of Denver for "serious shopping".

I wouldn't worry about snow, other than that clearing the roads here seems to be more about being cheap than doing it well.

Despite the Springs' reputation, it's a live and let live kinda place...the religious aspect is not at all overwhelming.
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Old 08-25-2018, 05:56 PM
 
531 posts, read 943,775 times
Reputation: 626
Hi all,

First, thanks again to everyone who responded, as well as the Colorado Springs Gal and Phetaroi who just responded today. Great info!

I want to provide an update since I just returned from a mini-trip to Colorado Springs- sadly, I only had two days but it did at least give me the sense that it's worth exploring more, and I had an overall positive vibe from the visit. Based on my visit, CoS is still at the top of my list!

Here are my positive impressions:

1) Since I currently live in a historic district in Phoenix (Coronado, for those familiar), I'm always happy to see such homes, bungalows, Tudor-revival, Victorian, love them all...also like ranch-style. It was a treat to drive through some leafy neighborhoods in CoS with actual big GREEN trees! lol. I absolutely love my current neighborhood- it's a true gem- there's a real sense of community here that's special (but I just can't handle the summers any longer!). I think the bungalow with front-porch style lends itself to that type of interaction. So, hopefully I can find someplace similar in CoS, where people wave when walking their dogs, etc. The only down-side to my current neighborhood is the ubiquitous criss-cross alleys that have made it easy for property thieves/burglars to get away unnoticed. It's gotten a lot better over the years but still- not crazy for alleys due to this (although like them for other reasons- access to carport, large garbage bins, etc.).

2) Hiking ops are amazing, abundant, and varying in style. The first day, I spent several hours hiking around Garden of the Gods...which is nice for a sort of communal experience and jaw-dropping beauty, as well as nothing too strenuous. Very touristy but still enjoyable. I hiked from the visitor's center where I parked to the point called 'balanced rock' or something like that. Downside was you're never really that far from car noise and people, but I found delicious solitude the following day while doing a longer hike from Red Rock Open Space to the Section 16 trail-head(I took the Contemplative route to the connector trail which I believe is called Intemann's). Since it was a Wednesday I had the trail almost entirely to myself...with a few hikers/bikers here and there. The hike wasn't that strenuous- a very comfortable up and down- with a few nature sightings- deer, hummingbirds, jays, etc. I didn't have time to try the famous 'Incline' but hopefully next time. I'm sure there are many more trails to explore!

3) The traffic wasn't that bad. Some roads were a bit rough but my current neighborhood has its own share of bumps and potholes, so not a huge difference.

4) The people I encountered seemed friendly and happy with CoS as a place to live and even retire (I'd like this to be my last move, so that's a consideration).

5) Even though it was smoggy due to recent fires, it was still gorgeous and the air felt cleaner to me than Phoenix's (Phoenix has so many high-pollution advisory days, with seemingly more each year- it's like breathing sludge). Although that may have just been the lovely smell of the pines that made me feel so happy. On the day I left, it had finished raining and seemed to clear out the smog, so I finally saw a gloriously clear view of the mountain range- I didn't want to leave!

A few neutral or negatives, although nothing insurmountable:

1) Maybe it's just because my hotel was on the east side of town so I had to deal with it constantly, but I really dislike medians and huge set-back shopping plazas! I think it might be okay if you're used to that, and know the fastest way to get around, but for someone from central Phoenix where there are all these middle-flex-lanes, where if you see a restaurant or shop or gas station that you want to get into spur-of-the-moment, it's frustrating to either have to do a U-turn or try to figure out the access point for a shopping plaza. In Phoenix, it's rare to have medians, so if you see something interesting on the opposite side of the road, you just use the middle 'flex-lane' to turn wherever you like. It's super-convenient. Plus, unless you're in the suburbs, you don't have these huge set-back shopping plazas (as well as just plain old fast-food chains) that require you to figure out what the mystery turn you must use to get into them. In Phoenix, if I need a sudden fix of caffeine, I can easily spot any Starbucks (because they're not set back so far that you can't see them!) and from there it takes less than 15 seconds to get into the line- and Phoenix is just as crowded if not more so it's not the traffic- it's the design of the roads, set-backs, plazas, etc. I'm sure there are reasons for this, but I'm hoping this was more a result of suburb-style design rather than something consistent throughout CoS. Not a deal-breaker, but it was irritating, especially being new to town and having to find my way around.

2) Along the same lines, Phoenix is so easy to navigate because it's basically just a grid! CoS isn't that bad because I can always find my way in relation to the mountain range. A few times when I got lost because my GPS took a crap (T-Mobile) I was still okay because I just worked my way eastward from the mountains and found my way towards Powers. But I do have one oddball complaint- what is with Hwy 24?!! It seems every road in town is named Hwy 24 even though they are completely different roads that don't seem to be connected! I found that very confusing! And maybe it was just my GPS, but there were all kinds of highways and roads that had different names (fine, we have this in Phoenix, too) but weren't named as such on the signs. So, that threw me off, but again, I just used the mountains as reference and ended up getting where I needed to go for the most part.

3) The fast route from Phoenix to Colorado Springs- most boring drive ever (almost as bad as I-10 west Phoenix to LA)! But next time I'll take the scenic route through the mountains, even if it takes a while longer to get home.

Off-topic observation: What's the deal with Trinidad, CO? Loved all the brick buildings and homes. Is it a famous tourist spot?
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Old 08-25-2018, 06:19 PM
 
794 posts, read 1,491,804 times
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Four, maybe five years ago it was reported that someone had successfully navigated all the way across Colorado Springs on US 24. This report was never confirmed and many doubt its veracity.
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Old 08-26-2018, 08:28 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
2,668 posts, read 1,666,689 times
Reputation: 2913
Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
The worst part about Colo Springs is the risk of forest/wildfires. In the big fires of a few years ago, all of Manitou was evacuated when fire threatened to simply wipe that whole area out. And when you get substantial fires further west, we pay a price for that, too -- terribly polluted air. There have been several days this month when I could not even see Pikes Peak from downtown.
Yes, this is true, wildfires are a risk, even with in the city because of our extensive park lands, but most of this latest smoke haze hasn't even been from local, regional, or even state fires. A lot of it is coming down from Canada and is impacting most of the west.

Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
There are houses in your price range, including single family and townhouses. You need to explore here, however. Many of what you are describing as bungalows are in very run-down old sections of the city.
This I would totally disagree with. The Arts and Crafts era when bungalows were prolific was from 1900-1930ish. These areas of Cos where these are typically found Old North End, Patty Jewett, and Hillside areas. The first two are way past gentrification and Hillside is starting to gain steam with gentrifying. If the OP prefers historic homes, the three neighborhoods above in addition to downtown, Memorial Hospital area, near west side, Shooks Run, Roswell, Mesa Springs, over towards OCC, Bott, and No Mans Land into Manitou are where the oldest homes are found.

Now, ranch style homes, that is another story. These were popular from the late 50s to now, so they can be found in a large majority of Cos that boomed after WW2, which are in great, to good, to sketchy areas. Cos has grown like a tree from its core. You can pretty much draw a circle around certain areas and place their age, and thus architectural style, within these rings.

I'm sorry to hear you are becoming dis-enchanted with our area. The rest of your assessment was pretty on.
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Old 08-26-2018, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Black Forest, CO
1,454 posts, read 2,079,841 times
Reputation: 1351
Yeah the access to shopping areas takes a little getting used to. After a while, you just get the hang of where to turn in to the large shopping plaza areas.

Trinidad is an interesting town, though I think it has a ways to go before it becomes much of a tourist spot. It has a lot of potential, but does not have the best reputation.
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