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Old 03-03-2013, 05:19 PM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,949,899 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicWizard View Post
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
Oh, I actually know a bit about Oregon - enough to know that eastern Oregon is close to as dry as Colorado. I was just generalizing about Oregon's stereotype as a rainy place. See where stereotyping gets a person?

But the coast and west of the coastal ranges do indeed get plenty of rain. I love the ocean and the Oregon beaches. I'd be living in Coos Bay right now if it weren't for the 9 months or so of gloom and rain.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Idunn
~snip~ 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, 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? ~snip~
Nice summary of the regions and topography of Colorado. I don't know if there's an official definition of the "Western Slope" anywhere, but here's mine:

To the south, the Western Slope consists of everything west of the top of Wolf Creek Pass, encompassing everything from the New Mexico border to the Four Corners on the Utah line. The center of the Western Slope starts at the top of Monarch Pass and includes Gunnison, Montrose, and on west to the little town of Paradox which again is almost at the Utah line. Finally, the northern most area of the Western Slope begins around Glenwood Springs and continues along the Colorado River to Grand Junction and Fruita.

When I crest Wolf Creek or Monarch Pass or hit the sharp curves I-70 twists through outside of Glenwood, I know I'm home.

Last edited by Colorado Rambler; 03-03-2013 at 05:37 PM..
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Old 03-03-2013, 05:39 PM
 
68 posts, read 143,686 times
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Default idunn post

Wow, that was really enjoyable. I think we all agree that if you cannot see the lights of Denver or the Springs or their presence in your heart, and you happen to be West of them, that just might classify as the Western Slope? Maybe I still have it wrong? I take for granted where I live. Sometime Evergreen looks so much more "convenient", and then I wake-up and smell the coffee again. I cannot do the city nor the I-70 mess from Summit County eastward. Man I love this state though!
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Old 03-03-2013, 06:31 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,091,437 times
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Just a bit of Eastern Slope-Western Slope trivia to confuse things a little more. Drive northwesterly out of Kremmling, on the Western Slope and in the Colorado River valley, and you will drive in that northwesterly direction onto the Eastern Slope and into the North Platte River drainage. Continue past the US40/CO14 intersection (CO14 heading northerly into North Park) on US40 you will ascend Rabbit Ears Pass and cross the Continental Divide once again, back onto the Western Slope, this time into the Yampa River drainage. Interestingly, the waters of the Yampa flow into the Green River, which does not join the Colorado River again (though both the Colorado and Yampa headwaters are only a few miles apart) for hundreds of miles--the confluence being in Utah's Canyonlands National Park.

A second "anomaly" occurs in far southern Colorado. People commonly assume the 10,015 ft. Cumbres Pass sits on the Continental Divide, but it does not. Cumbres separates the Rio de Los Pinos and Rio Chama drainages, both tributaries of the Rio Grande River (and both on the Eastern Slope). When one drives US84 west of Chama, NM, the Continental Divide crossing occurs at not much more than 8,000 ft. elevation (nearly 2,000 feet lower than Cumbres Pass) at a non-descript place known for its former railroad siding (long gone) name of "Azotea," meaning "roof" in Spanish. A small historical sign is the only way that most "pilgrims" know that they have crossed the Continental Divide from the Rio Grande River drainage of the Eastern Slope to the Colorado River drainage of the Western Slope.

As to the "feeling" of Eastern Slope/Western Slope, West Slope ski/resort towns along the I-70 Sacrifice Zone (Summit County, Glenwood Springs, and the Roaring Fork Valley) are demographically, socially, and politically much more part of the Front Range than they are part of the other rural areas of the Western Slope. Similarly, "East Slope" areas such as North Park, the Wet Mountain Valley, much of the upper Arkansas Valley, and the San Luis Valley have much more in common with the Western Slope than they do with the Front Range. The rural agricultural areas on both sides of the Divide have much more in common with each other than they do with the Front Range. And the Colorado counties at the state's borders often have more in common with the neighboring states than they will likely ever have with the Front Range cities.

In fact, if anything has changed--and for the worse, in my opinion--in the state's demographics, it is that, as the Front Range metro areas have grown and filled with a higher and higher percentage of out-of-state transplants, the Front Range metroplex has become increasingly disconnected--especially socially and politically--from the rest of the state in which it is located. Not surprising, then, that many rural Coloradans often feel alienated, ignored, and "out of place" in a state where they and their families may have lived for generations.
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:50 PM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
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jazzlover wrote: Not surprising, then, that many rural Coloradans often feel alienated, ignored, and "out of place" in a state where they and their families may have lived for generations.

Not surprising at all, and not in any way, shape, or form is this unique to Colorado. In every state with a large metro area, the same split and alienation exists between the rural and metro areas. That's been going on since time immemorial! My home state of PA for example, is said by some to be, Philly in the east, Pittsburgh in the west and Alabama in between. Those who feel out of place in any state are victims of their own attitude of non-acceptance and resistance to the way things are. Not that there is anything wrong with feeling out of place, but anyone who feels like that is doing it to themselves. Blaming the newcomers is simply a lame excuse for not taking care of their own emotional well being.
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Old 03-04-2013, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
12,098 posts, read 20,344,698 times
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In my opinion the biggest difference between the western slope and the eastern slope is population. The eastern slope is home to the emerging front range mega region and by 2050 it's expected to have millions more people living here connected with a high speed rail with a hub in Denver and Pueblo. The western slope will not see this kind of growth.
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Old 03-04-2013, 08:29 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
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Josseppie wrote: The eastern slope is home to the emerging front range mega region and by 2050 it's expected to have millions more people living here connected with a high speed rail with a hub in Denver and Pueblo.The western slope will not see this kind of growth.

Thankfully!
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Colorado
90 posts, read 275,734 times
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The Front Range's congestion is something else....

In 1982 I moved to The Springs from Upstate NY. (Alabama before that.) I experienced a greater degree of culture shock in the '82 move ... which surprised me.

DEVELOPMENT
Powers Blvd and all that eastern development of The Springs was still ranch land. There really wasn't any development to speak of north of Dublin on Academy. As soon as you were driving a mile north of the North Academy interchange onto I-25 it was empty, raw and beautiful driving all the way to Arapahoe on the south side of Denver (save for a brief *flash* of civilization at Monument's scales, and an even briefer flash of Castle Rock).

We could easily drive from downtown Colorado Springs to downtown Denver in less than an hour. Today this drive is a 90 minute drive on a good day.

If not for Gov. Romer's move to have the state buy that rancher's land just north of the El Paso county line, we'd have already seen the Denver sprawl meet the Springs sprawl. (Even a dopey Gov. can do something right.)

ATTITUDES
In '82 I was really surprised at how unwelcoming The Springs was to outsiders. It was not easy to join various business groups. Church was different; I felt quite welcomed there.

1984 brought a job change and a move to the Denver area. Wow! What a difference! (My read on it was) since most people in Denver were from somewhere else, everybody pretty much welcomed newcomers. It was easy to get plugged-in to new business groups. Again, church was different. The Catholic churches in the Denver area were some of the most suspicious-of-visitors and unfriendly churches I'd ever seen.


TODAY
I became a Christian since then. I cannot comment on the Catholic churches. But the Christian churches all up and down the Front Range are generally welcoming, making you feel right at home immediately.

Now The Springs is more like Denver was 30 years ago ... but it still takes a long time to become "accepted" in many business circles. It's work...! Denver has pretty much lost its "cow town" image altogether; it's a big city with all the associated problems and blessings.

RESORT TOWNS
(I like distinguishing these from Eastern Slope and Western Slope. Good call.) The southern and southwest resort towns are still pretty warm and friendly. The I-70 resort towns have become so ... strange ... as to be other-worldly. As already posted, frequently the people who make these resort towns function cannot afford to live in them. What a disconnect...!

WESTERN SLOPE and EASTERN AGRICULTURAL
While you can still catch glimpses of Cowboy Colorado in outlying areas of The Springs and Longmont-to-the-North up I-25, it's still pretty common on the Western Slope and the Eastern Ag areas. Courtesy, respect, minding your own business and real Rocky Mountain West graciousness still abound.

Our beautiful state pretty much has it all.

- KK
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:56 AM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,949,899 times
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Kaptain Karl wrote Now The Springs is more like Denver was 30 years ago ... but it still takes a long time to become "accepted" in many business circles. It's work...! Denver has pretty much lost its "cow town" image altogether; it's a big city with all the associated problems and blessings.

People who grew up in the Springs or arrived there before the population exploded DID tend to give new comers the cold shoulder. Californians and Texans were blamed when housing costs started to go through the roof and traffic snarls on the major thoroughfares became a constant. Many of us wanted our small town back. But the old timers gradually got over it, and if they didn't, they moved away to other places. The Springs HAD to come to a truce with newbies what with the expansion of the military/defense presence in the area, plus the influx of Christian/Evangelical outfits, etc., etc.

I am rather surprised that you STILL feel that you are not really accepted by business groups there, since now almost everyone in the Springs comes from somewhere else. Old timers who discriminate against newcomers would end up being pretty socially isolated these days. Heck, I broke down and even had a boy friend from California of all places.

Here's a joke that was making the rounds in the Springs back in the day:

A Californian, a Texan, and a Coloradan were sitting in a bar having a few drinks. The Californian finished his white wine spritzer and threw his empty glass against the wall, exclaiming "In California, we have so much money, we never drink out of the same wine glass twice."

Not to be outdone, the Texan gulped down his shot of Jack Daniels, threw the shot glass at the wall and announced, "In Texas, we have so much sand, we never drink out of the same shot glass twice."

The Coloradan stared at the Texan and Californian, finished his can of Coors, crumpled up the can, then drew out his gun and shot the Californian and the Texan, saying "In Colorado, we have so many Texans and Californians, we never drink with the same ones twice."
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Old 03-05-2013, 05:35 PM
 
Location: Colorado
90 posts, read 275,734 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado Rambler View Post
I am rather surprised that you STILL feel that you are not really accepted by business groups there, since now almost everyone in the Springs comes from somewhere else. Old timers who discriminate against newcomers would end up being pretty socially isolated these days.
I didn't write about social isolation. I posted about real acceptance in business groups.

They'll let you "join". But there are some key / top business groups which are real throwbacks when it comes to "who does business with whom." (Think "Old Boys Network.") I'm not going to post about this moe on here....

There are lots of BNI-type groups and sub-groups of the Chamber which are not like this. The business groups like that are pretty open. As you posted, "almost everyone in the Springs comes from somewhere else."

Quote:
Heck, I broke down and even had a boy friend from California of all places.
Hmm. Another one flew in under the radar!

- KK
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Old 03-05-2013, 07:39 PM
 
Location: Aurora, Colorado
5,371 posts, read 7,657,321 times
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I think people overexaggerate the population of the Front range. 4.4 million people? That is nothing! I'm originally from Houston and that's a metro of 6 million people now. Lets just be glad that Colorado doesn't have that many people living in one metro...yet.
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