If you are thinking of moving to Colorado Springs, read this! (Denver: condo, townhome)
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You guys are putting doubts in my head about moving to Colorado...but if not there....then I can't think of anywhere else. :/ We HAVE to leave Washington state. But we want a place that's warm...and not life threatening
Warm and not life threatening - You just described Arizona. Maybe you might want to think of that as a choice.
would living closer to Denver be better weather wise?
That's a matter of opinion. Denver's southern suburbs are still pretty thunderstorm-prone, if that's your question. Farther north, the storms are fewer, but those areas can tend to get big hail on occasion. "Hail alley" covers most of the Front Range of Colorado and the Eastern Plains and extends northeast clear into South Dakota. I live near Cheyenne, Wyoming--100 miles north of Denver. Cheyenne is the hail capital of the U.S. My house is 7 years old and is on its third roof from hail damage. Ironically, all 3 hailstorms occurred between 2000 and 2003, none have hit me since. Several times this summer, quarter-size hail has hit not far from me. That will start to do damage. Golfball-size is very damaging (it can total a car parked outside), and softball size is pretty much devastating. The second most costly (in inflation-adjusted dollars) single storm event that occurred in the U.S. up to that time was a hailstorm that hit the Denver area in 1990. Like I said, nothing precious or cute about the weather in this region.
Personally, I love the fickle and sometimes violent weather in this region, but it's what I grew up with. West Coast weather would bore me to death. I think it was Mark Twain that said you didn't have to look out the window in San Francisco to know what the weather was, just look at the calendar.
By the way, my closest lightning experience (one of several, actually): When I was up in the hills during a thunderstorm--sitting in my pickup, thank God--when lightning struck an Englemann spruce tree not 50 ft. from the truck. Lit that spruce up like a Roman candle, and blew smouldering bark all over the pickup. Got my attention. My unflappable friend's (sitting in the pickup with me) comment, "@#$%!!! That was cool!"
Last edited by jazzlover; 07-30-2007 at 06:46 PM..
But you know, there's one question I forgot to ask. I am starting to understand what it's like in Colorado Springs during the winter and summer....but what about off-seasons? What's it like during the rest of the year?
In Washington...the off-seasons are 80 gloom of various sorts and the rest are sunny days or partly sunny...
I personally love the weather here, low humidity yet a variety of warm and cool weather. As far as the stormy weather goes, I would suggest living on the west side of town. The further east you go, the more chances of tornados. Old Colorado City and Manitou areas as well as anywhere west of I-25 are ideal.
Most native Coloradans will tell you that fall is the prettiest season in Colorado. Not very many storms (though it can snow anytime from Labor Day on just about anywhere in Colorado), mostly just nice days in the 50's to 70's and down to 20 to 30 at night. Most natives will tell you that spring is the worst season--it just lurches back and forth between winter and summer. It will be snowing in much of the high country until May (or later some years), interspersed with warmer, but still unsettled weather. In the mountains, folks like to call spring "mud season." Spring is the time many Coloradans take their vacation elsewhere. That's why I recommend that anyone remotely thinking about living in Colorado visit the state in the spring. If you can stand it then, you should be able to stand it the rest of the year.
Finally, the original poster is from Washington state (I assume around Seattle or along the coast). The big adjustment to Colorado (or any of the Rocky Mountain states) for people from such areas is accepting the fact that things are brown most of the time. Outside of the mountains, snow cover usually doesn't last in the winter, and many areas of the state (particularly lower elevations) are brown for most of the summer and fall. A good chunk of Colorado is brown for probably close to 9 months of the year--all but the higher mountain areas of the state are either arid or semi-arid. The Chamber of Commerce brochures don't show that, of course. The tradeoff is pretty simple--if you don't like snow and like a longer grower season, you'd better like brown; if you like snow and like it to be green in summer, you'd better like a shorter growing season and longer winters. That's basically your choices in Colorado.
You odds of dying because of a lightning strike are 1 in 79,746.
Odds of dying as an occupant in a car are 1 in 237.
Odds of dying in a fall involving bed, chair, other furniture are 1 in 4,473.
You are more likely to die because of your household furniture than you are via lightning.
This assumes, however, the data is correct here: Odds of Dying - NSC (broken link)
Having lived here all my life (except for five years in Grand Junction and in Denver), I respect thunderstorms. I love them actually as there's this fascination when a major one blows through and I have yet to see some of the serious thunderboomers we can get around here, this summer.
As for tornados, I've never even seen a funnel cloud. We've had a couple of tornados that I know of since 1970. One in 1979 (IIRC) that hit Manitou Springs and there was one in 1999 on the east side of the city (off Powers) but it was too small to create a large amount of damage.
But thunderstorms are not likely to kill or maim you if you use proper safety procedures like not being on a golf course, park or large field...not to mention not being under a tree among other basic precautions.
Last edited by COflower; 07-31-2007 at 10:40 AM..
Reason: clarification 9:41 am
would living closer to Denver be better weather wise?
I lived there too. Denver is actually farther out from the mountains so tornados are more likely in various parts of the metro area (although the foothills can get tornados too). When I lived there - what is now Centennial, in 1997 there were funnel clouds spotted not too far from where I lived. I didn't see them because of the ridge but lightning seemed to be just as fierce there as it is here the summers I was there.
I will say this, you have very, very, very, very little to worry about. If you live with those natural disasters as a concern in your head, you will find that there is not a place on this ball we call Earth that is safe.
Hi everyone, enjoy reading all your comments about Colorado. I live in CA and am doing my very best to get to Colorado to live. Have to sell my house first. I have been hearing a lot about the "Super Slab". Does anyone know what the latest is? When I can finally move I want to buy acreage either east of Colorado Springs or northeast of Denver. I don't want to build my dream home to have it taken away from me. Thanks
Wow!! I just saw there are houses around $130k near Denver. That's sweet!! You can't even buy a hot dog in washington for that. (hehe)
but seriously...it looks great. We MAY have to move there without even visiting...we just don't have the cash to visit and we HAVE to sell our house very soon and move. So, just trying to get as much info as possible...can't be worse than the rain-soaked, frozen, gloomy washington.
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