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Old 10-26-2011, 08:48 AM
 
77 posts, read 130,952 times
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So basically, Pagosa Springs sucks unless you've got alot of money saved up and are not worried about getting a job? My buddy makes tons of money by telling the missles where to go, or something like that (he's not allowed to say what his job actually is)...so I guess he's not too worried about a job.

Okay, well, thanks everybody!
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Old 10-26-2011, 11:33 AM
 
2,253 posts, read 5,837,013 times
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Wink Dreams within reality

Go look at the area. At minimum you should have a lovely excursion as Pagosa Springs resides in a scenic region. Well worth the trip, for no more reason than that.

As far as making a living, it saves a certain disappointment if understanding in advance what a relatively limited market it is, even in larger Durango. But people do live there, even those not retired and needing to work. All things being equal, one would more usually have an easier time of it on Colorado's front range, or even some other state and region. Think of it as the scenery tax that is sometimes spoken of; housing and other considerations can come with less of a challenge elsewhere, but chances are without the view you may have from a kitchen window, and ready access beyond into that realm.

If knowing some of the particulars now, nothing can be really known unless visited in person. At that point, with reality underfoot, postcard dreams may swiftly evaporate. Or, possibly become all the more entrenched and determined.
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Old 10-26-2011, 11:53 AM
 
Location: Durango, CO
169 posts, read 318,250 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JesseQ View Post
So basically, Pagosa Springs sucks unless you've got alot of money saved up and are not worried about getting a job? My buddy makes tons of money by telling the missles where to go, or something like that (he's not allowed to say what his job actually is)...so I guess he's not too worried about a job.

Okay, well, thanks everybody!
It doesn't suck at all, there just won't be as many job opportunities as you would find in larger Durango. You could even live in PS and work in Durango: they are only an hour's commute apart.

Last edited by Mike from back east; 10-27-2011 at 08:53 AM..
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Old 10-26-2011, 02:26 PM
 
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Pagosa is basically a 2nd home spot for a lot of Texans. If you're not wealthy, then one way or another you're working for them, either repairing their homes, plowing snow, or waiting on them in restaurants. There is no industry per se in Pagosa. As well, it gets a lot more winter, and snow, than Durango does. That's great if you can afford to ski regularly, not so much if you're shoveling driveways and sidewalks. Due to the collapsing 2nd home market the town itself basically went broke, laid of more than half of its employees, etc. Its unlikely to recover until the whole US economy does. If you come to a "paradise" like Pagosa without a nest egg, be prepared to work HARDER than you did in the big city for LESS dollars.
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Old 10-27-2011, 05:59 AM
 
Location: OKLAHOMA
1,778 posts, read 3,479,886 times
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I was there last month and it didn't seem to change any from the year before. I agree the second home part has taken a big hit. Been looking at home prices for years. The hot springs were hopping with business and I wonder how they do in the winter. I do not like the drive to Wolf ski lodge, that is a scary road! I always wonder during the winter do they take buses up to Wolf because most skiers were have to stay in Pagosa. Pagosa to me would be a wonderful place to retire. Your not far from Durango and if you choose the right house all you need to do is look at the windows for beauty. Talk to quite a few people which were all older people, like 70s so 10 years older than me and they loved it. Some go to families or elsewhere during Jan-March which makes them snowbirds. I personally watch their newspaper during the winter and they still seem to have lots going on. FORGET JOBS This is a place you must be retired first. Jobs would be seasonal I would think. Personally, I would love to live south of Pagosa near Chama but there isn't much at all in Chama but being so close I could have it all.
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Old 10-27-2011, 08:37 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,099,702 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wadenelson View Post
Pagosa is basically a 2nd home spot for a lot of Texans. If you're not wealthy, then one way or another you're working for them, either repairing their homes, plowing snow, or waiting on them in restaurants. There is no industry per se in Pagosa. As well, it gets a lot more winter, and snow, than Durango does. That's great if you can afford to ski regularly, not so much if you're shoveling driveways and sidewalks. Due to the collapsing 2nd home market the town itself basically went broke, laid of more than half of its employees, etc. Its unlikely to recover until the whole US economy does. If you come to a "paradise" like Pagosa without a nest egg, be prepared to work HARDER than you did in the big city for LESS dollars.
Exactly correct. No one should think that a commute to Durango is a one-hour piece of cake. It is a 2-lane road for the most part, with frequently more traffic than it is designed to handle. The road is rife with deer and deer-auto collisions are frequent. No one should make light of those, either. I've seen a lot of cars totaled and people injured in deer/car collisions. Winter is a driving challenge, as well--especially for anyone who is not a well-experienced winter mountain driver. The road between Pagosa and Durango is just the right elevation to get a lot of black ice. A friend of mine lived in Pagosa years back and had to go to Durango 3 to 4 times a week. A Colorado native who had lived in the mountains all of his life, he said the Pagosa/Durango drive was one of the most hazardous he made, both in winter and summer, of anywhere in Colorado. He had lived all over Colorado--working in a job where he was transferred frequently.

As for Wolf Creek Pass, it remains one of Colorado's most hazardous mountain highways in the winter--though it is considerably better than it used to be since a number of snowsheds were constructed on the road in the most snowslide-prone areas.

Several people I know still live in Pagosa. They universally fit this mold--they made their income and "nest egg" somewhere else, they bought their homes before the big real estate boom, and they are content to stay in Pagosa for weeks or months at a time without leaving town. Fit that description and Pagosa can work OK. But, if you can't stand to stay at home, if you have specialized medical needs that can not be met locally (and many people find themselves in that predicament as they get older), you actually need a job or a local income--then Pagosa is a poor choice.
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Old 10-27-2011, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,754 posts, read 16,452,867 times
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jazzlover wrote:
( IF ) you actually need a job or a local income--then Pagosa is a poor choice.
I really liked Pagosa Springs in '06 when my wife and I spent a week there scoping it out for a potential relocation. For the very reason you mention above, we crossed it off our list. And that was back in the go go days of '06. I can only imagine what the economy ( or lack thereof ) must be like today. But, IF money was a non issue, it would be great place to live in my book. I'm one of those people who could stay there for months on end during the winter without venturing out. I'd go X-country skiing everyday, then while away several hours a day at the hot springs.
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Old 10-27-2011, 09:52 AM
 
16,171 posts, read 20,180,588 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post

As for Wolf Creek Pass, it remains one of Colorado's most hazardous mountain highways in the winter--though it is considerably better than it used to be since a number of snowsheds were constructed on the road in the most snowslide-prone areas.
I remember all the construction on Wolf Creek Pass, it's been years ago. I worked in Durango for the Forest Service as a road crew laborer in the Summer and Fall of 1968. At that time it had just the one snowshed and Deb, that road back then was surely a scary road for the out of state tourist. In fact, on one of the hairpin curves on the west side of the pass, there was a huge sign saying "Many lives have been lost on this curve." When I first started work for the USFS, I remember asking one of the diesel mechanics about what specific incident happened to cause that sign to be erected. He said " take your pick amongst several incidents, including one involving a tour bus."

At that time it would not be uncommon to have Pagosa snowed in for a few days at a time when a snowstorm would roll in. And in many cases Red Mountain Pass would get shut down at the same time. That scenario would cause drivers to have to go through northern New Mexico and back up I-25 if an individual had to go to Denver.

Last edited by DOUBLE H; 10-27-2011 at 05:54 PM.. Reason: correction
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Old 10-27-2011, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Durango, CO
118 posts, read 268,052 times
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My take is that Pagosa has an even smaller and arguably more isolated feel than Durango, so it depends largely on what appeals to you. Personally, I'm loving Durango, but would feel a little claustrophobic in Pagosa.

If you do much airline travel at all, Pagosa would be a real PITA as well.
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Old 10-27-2011, 10:55 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,099,702 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUBLE H View Post
I remember all the construction on Wolf Creek Pass, it's been years ago. I worked in Durango for the Forest Service as a road crew laborer in the Summer and Fall of 1968. At that time it had just the one snowshed and Deb, that road back then was surely a scary road for the out of state tourist. In fact, on one of the hairpin curves on the west side of the pass, there was a huge sign saying "Many lives have been lost on this curve." When I first started work work for the USFS, I remember asking one of the diesel mechanics about what specific incident happened to cause that sign to be erected. He said " take your pick amongst several incidents, including one involving a tour bus."

At that time it would not be uncommon to have Pagosa snowed in for a few days at a time when a snowstorm would roll in. And in many cases Red Mountain Pass would get shut down at the same time. That scenario would cause drivers to have to go through northern New Mexico and back up I-25 if an individual had to go to Denver.
On one my first trips over Wolf Creek Pass, as a kid back in the 60's, I saw the aftermath of a truck runaway on the pass. The truck was a Rio Grande Motorway truck (the trucking company was a subsidiary of the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad). All of their drivers were experienced mountain truck drivers. In this instance, the truck lost its brakes from a catastrophic mechanical failure. The driver immediately knew there was no saving himself from a runaway, so he pointed the truck off the road and over a cliff--he bailed out the cab at about 30-40 mph before the truck left the road, suffering numerous broken bones and lots of road rash. The truck and trailer went down the mountainside, probably 500 feet or more. The truck-tractor and trailer (an empty flatbed) were unrecognizable. I still have the black-and-white photos of the wreck that I took with my old Brownie camera that day. I was a few years from getting my driver's license, but my Dad--an experienced mountain driver--took the opportunity to pound into my head the importance of knowing how to "gear down" on mountain grades and the importance of checking a vehicle's braking system frequently to avoid a mechanical failure on mountain grades. I never forgot that lecture, and I've never had a brake failure or runaway in hundreds of thousands of miles of mountain driving over the last four decades.
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