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Old 03-02-2013, 08:44 PM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,754 posts, read 16,450,212 times
Reputation: 9287

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quote: and believe myself vastly superior to everybody even slightly different from myself

If you look closely at those who behave in this manner, it requires less than a nano second to realize that a person like this was shamed to the very core of their being at a young age, ever since haunted with a pervasive sense of inferiority and unworthiness. The only way to feel better is to project a facade of superiority...but it ALWAYS fails, because nothing can erase the inner shame.

Last edited by CosmicWizard; 03-02-2013 at 08:54 PM..
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:33 PM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,951,390 times
Reputation: 9432
Quote:
Originally Posted by Idunn View Post
Not everyone may be a George Thorogood fan, or like Jeep rides for that matter, but the mention of them bespeaks an older Colorado that is being lost, and even those in urban areas might on reflection miss.

It is within living memory that one could easily do such things without a second thought. Many in rural areas, and in town as well, kept an old Jeep in the driveway, and used it. One could literally go anywhere they wanted, up any mountain and across any river (and if too large, then perhaps floating down it).
Good times! I remember them fondly... Agree that the National Monuments and Parks are absolutely impossible anymore. The rules are endless and seem geared for park visitors ready to die from terminal stupidity. Like:

No jumping up and down on arches! - sign posted at Natural Bridges National Monument

Do NOT feed the cougars your poodle or small child! - posted at Park Headquarters at Capitol Reef NM

Do NOT stand on top of high rock formations during thunderstorms! - posted at Canyonlands visitor board

Skin Walkers and Shape Shifters have been reported in the vicinity of the Park. Climbing on the ruins is strictly prohibited. - posted at entrance to Mesa Verde NP


OK, I'm exagerating a little, but not by much. At least the National Forests are not Nazi's like the Park Service is. I can still get away with quite a bit in the San Juan National Forest, the Uncomphaghre Plateau, and the Uncomphaghre National Forest among others. The nice thing about having no jobs in Colorado's Four Corners region is that no one is flocking here to live, so the pressure on public lands is not as bad as it is in other parts of Colorado.

And I'll let everyone in on a little Colorado secret: If you want to relive the good old days, just hit the BLM lands in southwest Colorado. For example, you can start by driving off Land's End in Grand Mesa National Forest (there's a sign warning you not to, but pay it no mind). Zig-zag down off Grand Mesa and round the steep curves until you reach the dirt road at the bottom that finally joins up with Highway 550 near Montrose.

From there you can choose one of several routes up to the top of the Uncomphaghre Plateau which is mostly BLM land. The BLM doesn't give a damn what you do as long as you don't start a forest fire or something. I've driven up dry creek beds and followed old logging trails to arrive at places where I feel I had the entire Uncomphaghre to myself. There's nothing like sitting by your campfire up there and listening to the distant songs of coyotes with a night sky filled with the brightest stars I've ever seen.

And that's just one place of many out here. Stop at a gas station in Montrose and fork over $20.00 bucks for the best adventure guide ever - The Colorado Atlas and Gazetteer. It's a compendium of 15 minute topographic maps covering the entire state. Pull into the Ute Museum parking lot on the outskirts of town and take a break to study your new guide to where the wild things are. Find a dirt road over a pass or two that appears to lead to a good place and start off on your adventure. And don't forget to lock in your hubs before you cross that stream and turn up a creek bed!

No, I don't drive the back roads with a six pack. And while the BLM may care only about oil and natural gas leases and has a nasty habit of chaining acres of pinon for the sake of livestock grazing, I respect the land too much to go off roading all over the mountains. Anyhow, the loggers did that for me 50 or 75 years ago, and their roads still remain for me to get lost on.

I know that one day even this remote part of Colorado will lose the back country freedom that currently still remains. But I figure by time that happens I won't be around to care. For now my old Toyota 4wd drive is parked in front of my place with my camping gear stored under the camper shell and my Gazetteer loving stashed in the cab. I can walk out my door, hop into my truck and be up in the mountains in 20 minutes any time I choose. How lucky am I!
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:54 AM
 
68 posts, read 143,708 times
Reputation: 107
Default Classifying Eastern Slope vs Western Slope

Do towns like Salida, Saguache, Buena, Westcliffe, Gardner, La Veta, and the like fall into the Eastern Slope category as they sit on the East side of the Divide? They are much more scenic than the plains, quite a ways from Denver's brown cloud and rat race, and still maintain some old school Colorado characteristics in terms of being a little less touristy and modernized.

In fact, scenery wise, La Veta is one of the neatest looking spots around! If I didn't have kids, was retired, and the knees were done skiing, probably just live there
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Old 03-03-2013, 09:15 AM
 
3,493 posts, read 4,702,524 times
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People who think the Springs or Denver is just like every other place are making a mistake.

They are not, and those of us who live there and know better will resent the comment.

Both cities are extremely unique. The only massive population hub in the US that is located within the mountains is Denver. Try to find a city with all the opportunities of the Springs with such low traffic and low taxes. By opportunities, I mean that you have 2 sam's, 2 costcos, a real air port that people actually use (not use very much, but some smaller cities only fly fedex packages out of their airport), access to Denver's music scene, many places that are open 24/7, local access to incredible camping areas, a zoo, a downtown that doesn't suck (sorry, most cities have an awful downtown), and beautiful mountain views. All this with a much better than average salary to cost of living ratio. How about the weather? That makes this area unique as well. If you want to see the sun, there are few cities that can compare. Those that can tend to have incredible amounts of traffic as people pile in to enjoy it.

The abundance of people moving here from other areas actually represents a distinction from most non-coastal cities which are still largely dominated by people living there. The great thing about having people that moved here from other places is that they made a choice to come here. When they were born here some made a choice to stay and some failed to make a choice to leave. I've seen more people than I can count that considered themselves trapped in the midwest because that is where the family lived. I've hardly ever met anyone who felt trapped in Colorado, and even then they were trapped only by their own decisions and not an obligation to family.

I moved here with my wife over the summer (2012). I've already had another friend move out here, and another couple in Oregon is putting their house up for sale to move out here if he can land a remotely similar finance job.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:17 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,095,377 times
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^Another "one-year expert" weighs in on Colorado. About Colorado Springs: I will grant that Colorado Springs enjoys one of Colorado's overall more-pleasant climates--that is a big positive. I will also concede that Colorado Springs is probably a more pleasant city than many other real hell-holes in the United States. But, to many people like me who have lived in Colorado for decades and know places like Colorado Springs from way back, the sprawl, traffic, declining friendliness of the local population, worsening crime, and other maladies are quite evident. And the more people who move in, the worse all of those problems get. That growth, which is not paying for itself, is another reason that places all over Colorado, including Colorado Springs, find their regional and local governments in ever more dire fiscal distress.

Then there is what Colorado Springs has done to the rest to the state to sustain that growth: the drying up of innumerable acres of agricultural land and critical wetlands so that people there can irrigate their Kentucky Bluegrass lawns. That reason alone is why so many rural Coloradans resent the Front Range cities.

Finally, no one should think that Colorado Springs is anything more than a "one-horse-town" when it comes to its economy. That economy is almost wholly dependent on federal pork-barrel spending on the military. Take that away and the Colorado Springs economy essentially collapses. The other much weaker leg in the Springs' two-legged economic stool is tourism, but, if one looks at history, tourism alone could only support a population in the Springs of about a quarter of what is there now. Colorado Springs' economic and population expansion in the last 50 years has almost exactly paralleled the explosion in government spending and government debt. Anyone with functioning cerebral cortex knows deep-down that unending expansion of federal pork is unsustainable. When that brick wall is reached--and I believe that is going to be soon--the Colorado Springs economy, indeed much of the metro Colorado economy, is in for an economic shock the magnitude of which the state has never seen. It won't be the first time that a Federal government-perpetrated bubble ravages the Colorado economy. As I've noted before, the last huge bubble like that ended with the repeal of the lucrative-to-Colorado Sherman Silver Purchase Act in 1893. That threw the state into an economic depression from which much of the state did not really emerge until World War II.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:56 AM
 
9,816 posts, read 19,017,909 times
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Life and these cities and towns will always change. I accept that. That is just life. I think it's just that with the Front Range there has been such a massive influx of people, it's hard for any culture to sustain itself and to me what it has changed into now is just another blob of suburbanites you can find anywhere. The population of the state of CO has pretty much doubled in my lifetime.

I see big problems for Colorado thanks to all these outsiders from elsewhere. They have an insular viewpoint, only looking inwards at themselves in the cities and not really understanding what built their cities was the rural production of agriculture, mining, oil, gas, etc. The tech industry seems to be a bit rolled back in the cities from what it was in the 1990's. With the lefties strangling all those rural industries, the government spending bubble about to pop, I do wonder about their finances going forwards.

The western slope you can certainly still find much that has not changed and doubtful a lot of it will change any time soon.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:21 AM
 
Location: A Very Naughtytown In Northwestern Montanifornia U.S.A.
1,088 posts, read 1,532,207 times
Reputation: 1959
Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
The only massive population hub in the US that is located within the mountains is Denver.
Umm. I did not read much of your post after noticing this nonsense statement.

Denver is in the Great Plains NOT in the mountains.

Last edited by Mike from back east; 03-03-2013 at 04:24 PM..
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Old 03-03-2013, 01:48 PM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,951,390 times
Reputation: 9432
Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
People who think the Springs or Denver is just like every other place are making a mistake.

They are not, and those of us who live there and know better will resent the comment.

Both cities are extremely unique. The only massive population hub in the US that is located within the mountains is Denver. Try to find a city with all the opportunities of the Springs with such low traffic and low taxes. By opportunities, I mean that you have 2 sam's, 2 costcos, a real air port that people actually use (not use very much, but some smaller cities only fly fedex packages out of their airport), access to Denver's music scene, many places that are open 24/7, local access to incredible camping areas, a zoo, a downtown that doesn't suck (sorry, most cities have an awful downtown), and beautiful mountain views. All this with a much better than average salary to cost of living ratio. How about the weather? That makes this area unique as well. If you want to see the sun, there are few cities that can compare. Those that can tend to have incredible amounts of traffic as people pile in to enjoy it.

The abundance of people moving here from other areas actually represents a distinction from most non-coastal cities which are still largely dominated by people living there. The great thing about having people that moved here from other places is that they made a choice to come here. When they were born here some made a choice to stay and some failed to make a choice to leave. I've seen more people than I can count that considered themselves trapped in the midwest because that is where the family lived. I've hardly ever met anyone who felt trapped in Colorado, and even then they were trapped only by their own decisions and not an obligation to family.

I moved here with my wife over the summer (2012). I've already had another friend move out here, and another couple in Oregon is putting their house up for sale to move out here if he can land a remotely similar finance job.
My Colorado Springs certainly seems to have changed. Low traffic on Academy Blvd and other major thoroughfares? No more stop and go traffic on I-25 during the rush hours? Finally, they put in a decent east/west road that actually allows you to drive from Manitou to Falcon without getting snarled up by traffic lights and a maze-like route across town? Plus, all those people who flock to the Springs for the sunshine don't add to the traffic. Guess the city is going green at last with everyone walking or riding bicycles.

Hot damn! I'm moving back! Especially since employers in the Springs are now paying better than average salaries. The people in my home town of Colorado Springs used to joke that we got paid in scenary rather than cash. The Broadmoor Hotel and other Springs employers finally paying their minions something more than minimum wage... It's about time.

OK, I'll stop now. I suppose the Springs must be appealing to folks from the flatlands or places like Oregon where all it does is rain, but for those of us who grew up in Colorado Springs, the massive influx of newcomers has turned our sleepy little town into just one more part of the urban sprawl which characterizes the Front Range. Yes, we do have the freedom to leave. And many of us have. Adios, Focus on the Family. Hasta la vista, Peterson and Fort Carson. See you later, brown cloud. And hello cows and back roads.
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Old 03-03-2013, 03:20 PM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,754 posts, read 16,450,212 times
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Colorado Rambler wrote: I suppose the Springs must be appealing to folks from the flatlands or places like Oregon where all it does is rain,

Obviously, you've spent little or no time at all in Oregon!



Annual precipation totals

Colorado Springs-Colorado: 16.51 inches

Bend-Oregon: 11:73 inches
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Old 03-03-2013, 05:08 PM
 
2,253 posts, read 5,835,868 times
Reputation: 2615
Wink If in the mountains

Quote:
Do towns like Salida, Saguache, Buena, Westcliffe, Gardner, La Veta, and the like fall into the Eastern Slope category as they sit on the East side of the Divide?

By common consensus most would probably agree that the Front Range is that thin, long band of urbanization stretching from Fort Collins in the north to Colorado Springs to the south. Even though the mountains pull back well to the west south of Colorado Springs, Pueblo might still feel left out, and depending on who is defining this, can be included. But for that matter the eastern plains pretty much end just west of I-25, so one could include all from Wyoming to New Mexico, and throw Trinidad into the bargain as well.

I suppose the Eastern Slope would often be synonymous with the Front Range, but technically all reaching from the mountainous divide down to include the urban areas along I-25. From Denver north there is no question where that divide is. Drive up the Peak to Peak Scenic Byway through Black Hawk, Nederland to Estes Park, and with often a good view of the high mountain peaks paralleling the road just to the west. Readily apparent of the divide they represent, with all to the east of their snow capped peaks the Eastern Slope. Drive across Rocky Mountain National Park on Trail Ridge Road from Estes Park to Grand Lake, and with the feeling based in reality that you've definitely crossed from one side to the other.

South of Denver to Colorado Springs one still has this impression, as the mountains are just there to the west. Although in truth not as much an obvious divide, and would one choose Pikes Peak as divide or only prominent landmark? Then south of there the mountains kind of get lost, and by Pueblo one can at least say they see them in the distance. Yet all the way through Walsenburg to Trinidad one will have the impression that anything east of I-25 is definitely the plains, and to one degree or another the mountains to be had not far west. This reinforced as the foothills draw closer to Trinidad, and from there south to Raton, NM no doubt over a mountain pass.

If choosing all of I-25 as the demarcation of the Eastern Slope, then the towns of Gardner and La Veta would fall within it. Only in this instance not on the Eastern Slope of the Front Range Mountains but that of the Sangre de Cristo. But to confuse this somewhat, Gardner lies at the southern terminus of, and even a bit behind, the range of mountains that separate Westcliffe distinctly from I-25 and the plains beyond. As residing in a valley directly at the eastern base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, with these other mountains to its east, Westcliffe might technically be on the Eastern Slope, with the Sangre de Cristo figured as that divide, but feels somewhat a world apart. Perhaps Gardner, or Beulah feeling more as Eastern Slope.

Salida, Saguache and Buena Vista are altogether different animals. They all reside to the west of what might commonly be considered the divide. Salida from Cañon City is somewhat more up a canyon, so perhaps not as readily apparent, but resides very much in the mountains. Indeed at the southern end of the same valley that Buena Vista inhabits to the north. Quite apparent some good sized mountains to the east of them to be traversed if ever reaching the Front Range.

If on the western edge of the San Luis Valley, Saguache is very much in the mountains as well. And everything within the San Luis Valley would not be of the Eastern Slope. Take one look at the quite high and rugged Sangre de Cristo Mountains forming a long line into New Mexico and that will be readily apparent. Suggest to anyone in the SLV that they are in some way part of the Eastern Slope or Front Range and they likely bent out of shape. If anything, the SLV, and Westcliffe somewhat the same on the other side, something of their own little world apart. Bordering the SLV to its west are the la Garita Mountains, also San Juan, but again something else.

There is the tale of an explorer returning to his sovereign, and when asked about the geography of the place (in this case, referring to the island of Hispañola in the Caribbean) he took a piece of paper, crumpled it up and tossed it on the table, and said (I paraphrase), "there, it looks like that!"

Colorado is much the same way. The eastern plains are more or less flat and easy enough to understand. One might debate the extent of the Western Slope and how far east it extends. Grand Junction certainly falls within it, Montrose as well. By some measures it could extend as far east as the Continental Divide of the Front Range Mountains, and indeed Milner Pass in Rocky Mountain National Park at Poudre Lake. Others may have a less expansive definition, and by certainly Vail if not before consider the Western Slope to be a done deal, and now very much in the mountains.

Look at a map and it apparent that the renowned mountains of Colorado only cover about one third of the state, primarily from north to south down the center west of the state. Northwest Colorado can kind of confuse things, as certainly often mountainous, but in nature tending more towards desert, and not the type idolized in such places as RMNP. Then to confuse things a bit more, include the quite notable San Juan Mountains in the far southwest corner of the state, which in beauty, ruggedness, extent and sheer wilderness, and height, will not be ignored. They, again, might also be considered a world unto themselves. Delta or Montrose, little doubt they reside on the Western Slope. Maybe Ridgway as well. But Ouray? Not that far from Ridgway, and more or less due south of it, but firmly embraced within the San Juan. When one thinks of it, more (as it would prefer) as being of the San Juan than Western Slope. That definition suits it best. And who, for that matter, would commonly refer to Silverton first—for someone looking for it—as being on the Western Slope?

Come right down to it, mountains arrange themselves as they like, often with little rhyme or reason other than underlying geology dictated, and the passage of time and rivers having shaped. Individual ranges run in all directions, if often it seems those major north to south. In a sense all is local. As mentioned, the Western Slope could be conceived to run all the way east to meet the Eastern Slope at the Front Range divide. But try telling anyone in the North Park town of Rand that and they may take a certain exception. For they are clearly in a large valley with the imposing peaks of RMNP to the west, and as good a separation as one could ever want from the Front Range. With a divide and pass to the south, and any number of perfectly suitable mountains bordering their valley to the west. Someone in Saguache or Telluride would understand.

You say we are part of what? And the insult of the "local" news likely coming out of Denver or Albuquerque. No, home is a local affair, and best defined by whatever mountain happens to reside closest as landmark.

Last edited by Idunn; 03-03-2013 at 05:35 PM..
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