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Old 03-29-2007, 12:50 PM
9 posts, read 32,065 times
Reputation: 10


My girlfriend and I are relocating to the Colorado area this summer, and I would love some advice about possible areas that would suit what we are looking for.

Coming from LA we would like to avoid any large cities. The move is inspired by a need to be closer to wilderness, yet not entirely isolated either. We are both artists/writers/teachers, and are looking to be a part of a nice, smallish community that has a liberal/conscious quality to it. As for teaching, a college or university, and a progressive/independent high school or grade school would be ideal for her and I respectively. In addition we would like to be involved with children and community arts, such as a center that exists or where there might be receptivity for one to be opened.

These forums have been very insightful. So far the three areas that we are considering (but looking for others) are Manitou Springs, Durango, and Boulder, however all three of them seem to have significant drawbacks.

Manitou Springs appears like the best fit of the three, but I have extreme reservations about living next to COS, since that will be our main hub for occasional urban desires. Considering what I have read on these forums, the overwhelming religious/republican/military presence concerns me.

Boulder is a place I wanted to move to 10 years ago, but now it may be far too big, rich, and liberal/spiritual elitist for our taste.

Durango might be a bit too remote, and similar to Boulder with its big-money population.

We have not ruled out any of these places since we must see/feel for ourselves before coming to any decisions, but what are some other places that could be possibilities? Is there anything like Manitou that is outside of Boulder?

Somewhere quaint, open-minded, near or in the trees, and not too far from some city life/cultural activites.

Sorry for such a long-winded post.

Thank you.

Last edited by rjcali; 03-29-2007 at 01:05 PM..
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:13 PM
Location: Colorado
4,308 posts, read 11,479,567 times
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Smile Maybe Lyons?

Lyons is a small town about 20 minutes north of Boulder. It has about 4500 people living there and is, I think, pretty liberal and open. Definitely has a more positive and down-to-earth vibe than Boulder. I think a few artists/artisans live there and they seem to have a fairly active town council plus several festivals thro'out the year. Check it out at http://www.lyons-colorado.com/. Property is slightly cheaper than Boulder altho the fact it's called a "mountain town" pushes the prices up. It depends on what you're looking for and how much you want to spend.
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:24 PM
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Thank you chilaili for the suggestion of Lyons. It sounds like what we're looking for. We will add it to the list when our exploration begins.
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:38 PM
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Default Nederland

You can try Nederland too. It's just west of Boulder up the canyon along the Peak-to-Peak highway.
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Old 03-29-2007, 05:03 PM
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tfox, thanks for the Nederland suggestion.

Apart from areas around Boulder, can anyone suggest other places in CO that might be of interest to us? Of course if there are more around Boulder I'd be happy to hear them as well.
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Old 03-29-2007, 05:51 PM
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OMG! I am in the exact same boat as you except I'm single. I too have considered Boulder but after visiting, I found the people's attitude to be unpleasant. The town itself is stunning and offers the restaurants and amenities I would want nearby. Durango is remote and is on my list of places. I've passed through Manitou Springs but only after I drove through the old part of Colorado Springs, west of the river and downtown. That area was very desirable. My hesitation is exactly like yours--COS is too military/fundamentalist/republican for my taste. It is a breathtaking city and I've loved everytime I was there, but, to live? Hmm, I'd have to think about it.

I'm also considering Salida which is about 100 miles west of Pueblo. It's an artsy kind of town of 5,000 above 7,000' in elevation. Amenities would be a stretch, but the isolation and beauty and liberal politics of the inhabitants are worth checking out, in my opinion.

That's off the list.

Good luck in your search. I'll be paying close attention to the other posts on this thread....

Last edited by Yac; 09-13-2007 at 06:40 AM..
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Old 03-29-2007, 06:39 PM
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Westcliffe, remote, in the mountains, still close enough to access the big towns and cities for shopping, entertainment, etc.
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Old 03-29-2007, 08:42 PM
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mhouse, it's great to discover another who is on a simlar search. I am so excited about this move, but I find myself carrying quite a few particulars about where we will call home. Sure, no place will be perfect, but there is a place somewhere in that state that will feel just right. Of course nothing will be certain until we are exploring and experiencing first hand, which I can't wait to do. I'm glad you will be able to benefit from this thread as well.

I have heard similar things about Telluride, although like you, was turned off when I learned about its "mega-richness".

All of these additional spots (Lyons, Nederland, Salida & Westcliffe [thanks sunsprit!]) we will definitely check out.

Keep 'em coming...

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Old 03-29-2007, 10:31 PM
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rjcali, I'm actually leaving tomorrow on a scouting trip to Colorado (from Arizona). I'm going to check out some familiar places and some new ones, so I'll let you know what I encounter when I return.

From what I've read online, Westcliffe seems nice, but I worry about the elevation (7800') and the snowfall (95") as well as the 200 days or so with lows below freezing. I'm partial to places that don't get much snow because I have almost no experience driving in it. That being said, I'm sure other Coloradoans will insist I live where it doesn't snow!
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Old 03-30-2007, 12:47 AM
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If coming from California or west, hit Durango then on Highway 160 go east to Walsenburg and hit I 25 up to CS and over to Manitou back on I 25 and up to Denver and over to Boulder and the area. If coming from the east it would be the opposite way. You also get to see some beautiful country like Wolf Creek. If you dont have the time or are flying in, best to go to Denver, see Boulder and at another time fly to Albuquerque and rent a car and check out Santa Fe and Durango on another outing. Although you can fly right to Durango and rent cars there too. Both would be great trips. The drive from Santa Fe up to Chama and then on to Pagosa and over to Durango is really nice and beautiful. Be sure and soak at the hot springs while in Pagosa with their natural hot springs.
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