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Old 12-03-2011, 08:02 PM
 
Location: Bend, OR
3,010 posts, read 4,905,245 times
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My husband and I, both 35, are contemplating a move back to Colorado in the next few years. I grew up in Aurora and then moved to Fort Collins to go to college (back when Fort Collins was still considered a small city). My husband grew up in a relatively small city in Pennsylvania, and also moved to Fort Collins to attend CSU. When we graduated, we both ended up in the small mountain town of Fairplay, CO. We have also lived in Grand Junction and now most recently live in Bend, OR. We spent a total of 7 months living in Everett, WA and Simi Valley, CA, before we moved back to Grand Junction, deciding we couldn't stand the big city. However, after living in the relatively remote small city of Bend, OR we are now thinking about moving back closer to my family in the Denver area. Has anyone made a similar move from a relatively small town or city (less than 100,000) to the Front Range? What are your thoughts? We really hate traffic and long commutes, which we know are not easily avoidable in the Metro area.

We both like the outdoors, specifically skiing, hiking and mountain biking. We We have come to enjoy the fact that we can access all of this within 30 minutes or less from our front door. The problem is, we are feeling too isolated from family here. It takes us usually 2-5 flights to get back to our hometowns, and the cost is really high. We also would like to live in a place that has a decent growing season. I've attempted gardening here in Bend, and while I'm successful it just takes too much work. I've gardened in Fort Collins and Grand Junction, so I know it's easier than Bend. My husband also enjoys playing music and would love to live in a diverse area where he can meet other musicians. He does play in a few bands here in Bend, but the opportunities will obviously be greater in a larger city.

We are thinking about moving back to Fort Collins, but one of the big downfalls for us is the distance from downhill skiing. Any other suggestions on small cities along the Front Range that wouldn't be too large? My husband is a nurse and I'm an unemployed teacher, with an additional degree in Forestry. My husband would definitely need work, I don't have to find work at this point.

Last edited by Mike from back east; 12-03-2011 at 08:32 PM..
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Old 12-05-2011, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Bend, OR
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Any suggestions? No one has moved from a small town to the Front Range? Now I'm getting scared!
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Old 12-05-2011, 06:27 PM
 
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Wink Nederland

Well, I've been in both directions. City, or at least big enough suburb, small town, or just out in the woods.

How about Nederland? A relatively short, not particularly treacherous, and beautiful drive down to Boulder, with supposedly there all the chic ambience, services and career opportunities one will find outside of Denver. Then, just in your backyard, something less than a mega-sized ski resort in Eldora. Small town, slash city at a remove. Presumably relatives not that far away, but not close enough to be knocking on the door at 3am looking for a cup of sugar.

As for gardening, at least wildflowers should do great there.
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Old 12-05-2011, 08:53 PM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
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From: Inland Empire, CA (also spent 10 summers in Everett, WA)

Where I lived before I moved to Denver: Ridgecrest, CA, pop. 25,000, with nothing but creosote bushes, desert, and mountains within 85 miles.

Moving back to the big city can be refreshing. Moving back to a small town can be too.

What about Longmont?
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Old 12-05-2011, 10:12 PM
 
Location: Bend, OR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Idunn View Post
Well, I've been in both directions. City, or at least big enough suburb, small town, or just out in the woods.

How about Nederland? A relatively short, not particularly treacherous, and beautiful drive down to Boulder, with supposedly there all the chic ambience, services and career opportunities one will find outside of Denver. Then, just in your backyard, something less than a mega-sized ski resort in Eldora. Small town, slash city at a remove. Presumably relatives not that far away, but not close enough to be knocking on the door at 3am looking for a cup of sugar.

As for gardening, at least wildflowers should do great there.
I've always like Nederland, but afraid we wouldn't like living there. We spent almost 4 years in Fairplay and I really don't have a desire to live in a place with that much winter again (yet, here I am in Bend, lol). I also think it would be way too much of a commute for my husband to get to a decent hospital. Right now his commute consists of jumping on his bicycle and riding through our neighborhood, hooking up with a nice dirt trail, and then arriving at the hospital door. It's all of a 10 minute ride in the icy, frozen winter. I can convince him to live a few miles further, but doubt he would ever commute through Boulder canyon for work. I do like the location though, so it's something to possibly consider.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Aguilar View Post
From: Inland Empire, CA (also spent 10 summers in Everett, WA)

Where I lived before I moved to Denver: Ridgecrest, CA, pop. 25,000, with nothing but creosote bushes, desert, and mountains within 85 miles.

Moving back to the big city can be refreshing. Moving back to a small town can be too.

What about Longmont?
You know, Longmont has come up a few times in our discussions. I really don't know anything about it except the few times I drove from Fort Collins to Boulder. I definitely think we need to check it out.

What was your hardest adjustment moving back to the city after living in a small town?
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Old 12-06-2011, 07:55 AM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delta07 View Post
You know, Longmont has come up a few times in our discussions. I really don't know anything about it except the few times I drove from Fort Collins to Boulder. I definitely think we need to check it out.

What was your hardest adjustment moving back to the city after living in a small town?
Getting re-used to all the people/traffic. OTOH, having more amenities again was a bonus (stores, restaurants, diversions). I was born and raised as a big city (or should I say "suburban blob") person so it wasn't much of an adjustment.

Moving to Longmont might not be that much of an adjustment from Bend, IMO you can get the best of both worlds there, as it's a fully-contained city, but unlike Bend, still close to the blob. There are hospitals in Longmont itself, Boulder, Lafayette, Louisville, Thornton, and Westminster, and even Loveland.
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Old 12-06-2011, 08:10 AM
 
1,660 posts, read 3,345,027 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delta07 View Post
I've always like Nederland, but afraid we wouldn't like living there. We spent almost 4 years in Fairplay and I really don't have a desire to live in a place with that much winter again (yet, here I am in Bend, lol). I also think it would be way too much of a commute for my husband to get to a decent hospital. Right now his commute consists of jumping on his bicycle and riding through our neighborhood, hooking up with a nice dirt trail, and then arriving at the hospital door. It's all of a 10 minute ride in the icy, frozen winter. I can convince him to live a few miles further, but doubt he would ever commute through Boulder canyon for work. I do like the location though, so it's something to possibly consider.



You know, Longmont has come up a few times in our discussions. I really don't know anything about it except the few times I drove from Fort Collins to Boulder. I definitely think we need to check it out.

What was your hardest adjustment moving back to the city after living in a small town?
delta07 Were you living in Warm Springs Ranch,we owned the first property there?Fairplay at that time had nothing,air was a little thin.We lived in Conifer at that time and Evergreen was just changing over from summer homes to subdivisions.

Last edited by DanBev; 12-06-2011 at 08:13 AM.. Reason: add info
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Old 12-06-2011, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Bend, OR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanBev View Post
delta07 Were you living in Warm Springs Ranch,we owned the first property there?Fairplay at that time had nothing,air was a little thin.We lived in Conifer at that time and Evergreen was just changing over from summer homes to subdivisions.
No, I didn't live in Warm Springs Ranch, but had a few friends in that area. We actually lived in several locations, one being a government issued "mobile home" right in the actual town of Fairplay, not recommended at 10,000 feet during the winter, ha! My parents own a cabin south of Fairplay in Ranch of the Rockies, so we also lived there for a year. I was up that way this past summer and it's changed a little. I noticed there was a stop light at Hwy. 285 and Hwy. 9, and there's a new grocery store and Subway. Other than that, I'm sure it hasn't changed too much.
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Old 12-06-2011, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Bend, OR
3,010 posts, read 4,905,245 times
Reputation: 2908
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Aguilar View Post
Getting re-used to all the people/traffic. OTOH, having more amenities again was a bonus (stores, restaurants, diversions). I was born and raised as a big city (or should I say "suburban blob") person so it wasn't much of an adjustment.

Moving to Longmont might not be that much of an adjustment from Bend, IMO you can get the best of both worlds there, as it's a fully-contained city, but unlike Bend, still close to the blob. There are hospitals in Longmont itself, Boulder, Lafayette, Louisville, Thornton, and Westminster, and even Loveland.
Yup, that's really our biggest concern too. I grew up in Aurora so I'm used to the suburban blob lifestyle and don't want to live that again. Longmont does sound like something that might work well for us. I'm heading out to Colorado in February to visit family, so might have to make a trip up to Longmont to check it out. I actually think my sister has some in-laws that live up that way too.

Does anyone know if Longmont has anything in place to keep it from growing into the "blob?" I know Fort Collins and Loveland have almost joined and I guess that would be a concern I had as well.
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Old 12-06-2011, 07:29 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW / CO / SA TX / Thailand
11,186 posts, read 18,587,988 times
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Longmont / Niwot and now Louisville are all part of the North Denver Blob

From your previous experience and desires (be closer to DownHill,,, and... if you still think you could live on the front range of CO...THAT would be VERY tough for me), I would look to western perimeter of Colo Springs.

I Recently was there(CS), and found it's access to skiiing much improved over coming from Ft Collins / Loveland. (my previous home of 25+ yrs).

The increased population in the suburbs of both Denver (and points north) and CS are pretty staggering.

I just talked with a person visiting WA, who had retired from AZ and moved to Nunn, CO

"Watch Nunn Grow"... is finally coming to fruition (about 40 -50 yrs late). You can guess how badly crowed the North Front Range is, for people to move from out of state to Nunn. (of course it is like paradise compared to some of AZ, but.... )
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