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Old 10-20-2006, 09:14 PM
 
265 posts, read 781,099 times
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I am a retired guy living in NW Illinois. Looking for places in Colorado with mild winter climate. Have checked weather records and the areas south of Colorado Springs look to be of interest. I have visited Canon City , Colorado City, Walsenburg , and Trinidad.

This would be a second home to spend the winters away from Illinois. Most affordable for me are areas around Walsenburg and perhaps Canon City. I like the small town feel.

On my Sept visit to Walsenburg , a local told me about an experience involving 4 feet of snow that fell when she first moved to the area. I was surprised since the weather records show snowfall to be much less than what I get in Illinois. Did not expect that much snow. But guess perhaps it can happen in that area.

Before I start looking elsewhere just wondered if there are people out there with experience with Colorado winters. Are there areas where you can get a mild climate without lots of snow . IF not then I will be looking further south into NM. I have already ruled out AZ because I can't afford it.

Thanks for any comments.
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Old 10-20-2006, 10:25 PM
 
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James57, for the most part, the area you are talking about generally gets some snow every year, but it is a not very often it would snow 4 feet. I would say maybe once every ten years or so. It feels much warmer than where you live up in Illinois due to the dry arid climate. If you want a place with little snow, Grand Junction and Cortez are some of the mildest in the state, but they are also desert type of areas.
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Old 10-21-2006, 07:17 AM
 
Location: on an island
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It's a beautiful area. Check out La Veta, too.
Been camping near the Sangre de Cristos, the wildflowers in July were absolutely breathtaking. But they do get some snow. As I type this, the high temp in Walsenburg today is supposed to be 45, and snow is possible, though whether or not that will actually materialize is another story.
You might indeed want to consider Grand Junction--or New Mexico.
In late April 2004 we drove from Denver to Albuquerque to pick up a new puppy.
It was a major winter snowstorm and we saw numerous wrecks, and witnessed two. The highway at Trinidad was closed for two hours, then they reopened it and we were on our way.
As soon as we crossed the stateline into New Mexico, the precipitation disappeared.
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Old 10-21-2006, 07:59 AM
 
Location: Montrose
129 posts, read 1,122,239 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cil View Post
Check out La Veta, too.
La Veta is indeed lovely, but it is also at a higher elevation and will generally get a lot more snow than, say, Walsenburg.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cil View Post
It was a major winter snowstorm and we saw numerous wrecks, and witnessed two. The highway at Trinidad was closed for two hours, then they reopened it and we were on our way.
As soon as we crossed the stateline into New Mexico, the precipitation disappeared.
Again, think of elevation. As you drive from Colorado via Trinidad into New Mexico, you go over Raton Pass, which often gets hit very hard when a storm passes through. You drop DOWN into the town of Raton, NM, and conditions improve dramatically.

4 feet of snow in that part of the state is extremely rare, but I saw it lying around my house once when I lived 25 miles SW of Pueblo! But Pueblo has an average snowfall total for the winter of only about 30 inches, so obviously that was a very unusual storm.

Suggestions to consider the Western Slope of Colorado are worth considering. From Grand Junction to Delta to Montrose is an area that gets little snow (well, it IS desert), and has milder, drier winters than the Front Range. Average temperatures tend to be similar in both regions, but you rarely get the extreme temperature variations on the Western Slope that are common on the Front Range in winter. Example: suppose the average high temperature for a day in February is 40F in both Canon City and in Montrose. Canon City might see high temps of 20 one day and 60 the next. Montrose is more likely to see 38 one day and 42 the next.
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Old 10-21-2006, 08:48 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,856,289 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winglady View Post
La Veta is indeed lovely, but it is also at a higher elevation and will generally get a lot more snow than, say, Walsenburg.
Definitely true.
Quote:
Again, think of elevation. As you drive from Colorado via Trinidad into New Mexico, you go over Raton Pass, which often gets hit very hard when a storm passes through. You drop DOWN into the town of Raton, NM, and conditions improve dramatically.
Thing is, the worst of the snow was before we ever were near Trinidad, let alone Raton Pass. The pass wasn't actually that bad at all.
BTW
The Spanish Peaks are beautiful, too.
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Old 10-21-2006, 05:21 PM
 
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my brother has a place outside of trinidad, and when it does get snow it is usually gone within a day or 2. very mild climate. small town feel with alot of history.
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Old 10-26-2006, 04:33 PM
 
265 posts, read 781,099 times
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Default Just wondered how much snow

Walsenburg got in this current storm. Does anyone out there know?. Thanks much if you do.

Jim
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Old 10-30-2006, 10:36 AM
 
11 posts, read 55,245 times
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Hi James57

I was traveling every few months visiting someone from Walsenburg up over LaVeta Pass, and would pass by the small community of LaVeta of (900 population) and decided to check out the town myself, as it lies in a green valley and the photo buff that I am stopped to take some photos. Wow what a great retirement area, if you like quiet, and small, but not much shopping around there. The community is an artsy community, with a historical small town feel. I noticed the houses are small, maybe built in the early to mid 1900s, but so tidy of a community with the white picket fences, with golfing just outside the small town. It seems also there are many retired people living there. There used to be a ski resort a few miles nearby, but I believe they closed it. Trinidad, Co is about 50 miles further South on
I-25. But the scenic view from the town is amazing going over the LaVeta Pass, (not too steep though). You mentioned Walsenburg, and it is only about 15 miles from there.

Vikki
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Old 10-30-2006, 10:59 AM
 
365 posts, read 724,125 times
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Look into Canon City. Beautiful area and pretty close to Pueblo and Colorado Springs. Winters are fairly mild compared to Illinois. Love Royal Gorge!!!!!!!! Boo Hoo I'm having Colorado withdrawls
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Old 10-30-2006, 04:57 PM
 
265 posts, read 781,099 times
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Default Thanks much for the additional comments

I am familiar with Canon City, LaVeta,and surrounding areas. In fact just completed a visit in Sept to Colorado to check out possible retirement areas in the front range. Anything from CS north is too expensive for me.

I did find possibilities in the Canon City area, Colorado City, and the Walsenburg area. Have been to Trinidad but didn't look closely. LaVeta is too expensive for me. However, there is an area between LaVeta and Walsenburg which is affordable.

My problem is that I'm not sure about the winters. I know they would be milder than Illinois, but seems like they do get these large snowstorms on occasion. A lady in Walsenburg who lives in LaVeta told me about a four foot storm a few years back. She also said that LaVeta gets a lot more snow than Walsenburg. So not sure about Colorado.

I am now looking at southern New Mexico. Can't afford anything north of Alb. My main areas of interest in NM are Socorro, Ruidoso/Capitan areas, Alamogordo, Las Cruces, and Silver City. Mix of desert and mountain areas. Planning a trip to check out these areas for possible retirement .

My search continues. I definitely would like to make a decision one way or the other within this next year. Time is awasting for me.

Jim
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