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Old 05-04-2007, 05:14 PM
4,541 posts, read 9,504,324 times
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We live on the very southwest edge of Longmont and my husband works in Boulder. Best of both worlds in my opinion. We love Boulder. The restaurants, things to do, atmosphere. But that's just us. We have a lot of friends, who are normal, hard working people that live in Boulder. Our son is on the ski team there. And the team is not full of a bunch of rich people - if that was the case they would have their kids on the Vail or Aspen ski team. It's because it's the most reasonably priced team in the state. We have the best of both worlds - living on the front range but easy access to the ski hill. When you truely get involved in the community you will discover that it's not as out there as everyone thinks. Just my opinion.
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Old 05-04-2007, 07:28 PM
Location: Loss Wages
1,311 posts, read 5,881,446 times
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Member Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Boulder
32 posts, read 2,640 times
Reputation: 12


I haven't visited Fort Collins in a while but I think Boulder and Fort Collins are more similar than they are different. My impression from some years ago was that Boulder is more ritzy and has more ultra-wealthy folks. I really did find myself in Boulder and I'm grateful for that. There really are a lot of different modalities and philosophies to explore here and be exposed to. I guess if you're from the West Coast you're hopefully pretty hip already, but I came here from Rhode Island and didn't know squat about Buddhism, hippies, cowboys, q u e e r s (space out your cuss words and they won't get zapped !), gay cowboys, New Agers, ulra-rich people, yoga, dope that you can throw at the wall and it sticks, neat sports like road cycling (where you dress like Spiderman and Green Lantern) and rock climbing, etc. etc. I really appreciate Boulder for that. One thing about Boulder is that you can drive 5 minutes or less to all the trailheads and then hike right up 3,000+ feet. Boy, that is one helluva quality of life attraction for me. 10 minutes from your door and you are in quiet wilderness of magnificent beauty, talking to these cute little friendly green iguana lizards who do these little push-ups and hang out with you (I'm serious folks!), bumblebees the size of golf-balls (yup!), bucks and white-spotted doe ambling by, bear scat on the trails, black squirrels with beet-red eyes like laser beams, super-fresh mountain air, and head-clearing solitude. Too bad as soon as you find a nice sunny spot high on a rock and take off your clothes (who wouldn't?), all of sudden you get dive-bombed by curious gliders and para-sailers and single-engine planes! What a place!
kinda cool when lizards do that, huh? Gotta love nature!

Love the descriptions of the community, especially the "sticky" stuff. That was funny. Good to know where the interesting people are...
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Old 05-15-2007, 12:45 AM
Location: Fort Collins, CO
4 posts, read 16,475 times
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Default Considered Jamestown?

If you're interested in some land in the forest, but with close access to Boulder, why not look into Jamestown? It's Boulder county, but just a bit Northwest. Beautiful drive on very accessable roads (they are kept plowed for the schoolbus that takes kids into Boulder High). You can still get pretty affordable mountain/well-treed land, even the occasional affordable house. I think you'll find a lot more peace and quiet and a lot less attitude up there. . . .
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Old 07-29-2007, 02:29 PM
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thanks for this info, my husband and I considering boulder and FC to move to from NY
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Old 07-30-2007, 10:12 AM
Location: Colorado
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I haven't read every single one of the posts here so I'm not sure if anyone else has mentioned this but one thing I noticed about Boulder is that whilst it is a lovely town, it's so close to the mountains you can't actually see them all that well. The further out you live, the better the view. (Unless you're lucky enough to live somewhere like near Chautauqua where you have fabulous views of the the Flatirons.)
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Old 06-28-2008, 02:42 PM
Location: N.E. I-95 corridor
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It's hard comparing Boulder and "The Fort", its not an apples to apples comparison.
Ft. Collins has a nice downtown, the microbreweries, and the college. But its seemingly islolated way up there, too far up from Denver/DIA, and good paying professional jobs seem scarce. I'd lean toward Boulder but if Denver was in the mix I'd pick Denver hands down.
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:07 PM
Location: Aurora, Colorado
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I like shopping in Boulder. I like to relax in Ft. Collins.
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Old 09-08-2011, 08:18 AM
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Any comments on a more recent comparison? How close is rockclimbing in fort collins? water activities?
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Old 09-08-2011, 11:20 AM
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Wink Water & climbing

For rock climbing and water activities one is probably better off in Boulder.

If kayaking, neither town likely as ideally situated as other places in Colorado. Boulder Creek is easily accessible from Boulder, running right through it, but as far as I know rough enough in the beautiful canyon that with few practical places to kayak. Most people probably confine themselves to tubes or something closer to town. Clear Creek, from above Golden, might be a possibility in places. Outside of Lyons the St. Vrain Canyon would be similar to Boulder Canyon in difficulty. But there are at least some possibilities near that town, as one will see people with tubes at times.

If one is not adverse to pond-like lakes there are a surprising number of them scattered along the front range. Boulder has its share, as does Fort Collins. Access to many of them may be restricted, so devolving to those publicly available, and possibly with some city or state fee tacked on.

Fort Collins might be the better choice in such things, as they have at least one nice lake in town, although I am unsure what is allowed on it. Farther removed to the northwest the Cache la Poudre River is a popular place, and may offer some opportunities in tubing or kayaking. Horsetooth Reservoir, just west of Ft. Collins, is picturesque when full to the brim, and more than large enough for any water sport. Kayaking might be kind of bland on what is essentially a large lake, but it is a favorite of power boats. Expect to pay a fee for access, save in winter, if enjoying such excursions in the snow, with some ice mixed in.

There are surely places and opportunities in this I'm overlooking, so inquire more closely locally if interested.

Boulder is surely the better home if into rock climbing. Anything from Ft. Collins is going to be a bit of a drive. Some of the better options from it would be in the canyon running between Loveland and Estes Park, and also of course some good climbing opportunities within Rocky Mountain National Park. But Boulder shares about as ready an access to RMNP, but with a lot more options in its backyard. One can venture up Boulder Canyon, or head shortly southwest of town to the mecca of Eldorado Canyon. Or, and always popular, just up above town for certain faces on the Flat Irons. It would be a great place to be based if a climber.
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Old 11-17-2013, 10:16 PM
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Default Wow...

Originally Posted by samsavenger View Post
I live in fort collins and work in boulder. (yes it's a pain... they're about 75 mins away from one another).

Boulder is much more expensive, and although it has less people, it seems a hell of a lot more crowded. It's impossible to park in downtown boulder (pearl st or the hill), and people seem to think it's ok to casually walk in front of your car while you're going 40mph. In Boulder you're competing for space with 90,000 residents, 30,000 students and about 100,000 people "just passing through and seeing the sights", whereas in FC, it's just 120,000 residents + 20,000 students, and over a much larger area with much better facilities to deal with it.

Traffic in both towns is honestly pretty comparable when it comes down to it, maybe boulder is a bit worse... It's just that boulder is much more centralized than the fort - so it seems quicker to get around... When you live in fort collins for a while, you'll start to figure out the fastest ways to get around town and the traffic isn't an issue anymore... The main problem is the lights are timed badly going east/west - just don't use S. College as your main commuting route, and try to avoid the trains that come through the middle of town every so often, and you're a-ok. You'll be hard pressed to find a regular commute within fort collins to be over 15 mins including traffic.

In terms of looks, Boulder is much more pleasing to the eye. The architecture is nicer, the urban planning is better, and the mountains are beautiful. Fort Collins has nothing too spectacular in the way of views, and some parts of town (particularly south) are riddled with strip malls and cookie cutter houses. Old town fort collins is beautiful though.

In terms of culture, Fort Collins is more about the pub scene, it's laid back, fun and easy-going... It's a comfortable place and nobody has a chip on their shoulder about anything. There are lots of arty type shops downtown, we have a couple of hookah bars, lots of head shops, lots of funky little coffee shops, an arthouse cinema, a couple of places for bands to play, etc. It's definitely a progressive/liberal type place but people are generally non-partisan and don't care all that much about politics.

Boulder on the other hand is extremely liberal. It's the kind of place where you'll see people with 'save the earth' bumper stickers on their V8 ford expedition SUV's going through the mcdonalds drive-thru. There's a strong social niche in boulder that some people call 'trustafarians' or 'corporate hippies' that this seems almost exclusive to. Boulder has quite a large homeless population and it's pretty common to be panhandled (asked for money), which is something I've never seen the homeless people in FC do before (if you're lucky enough to see them at all). People seem to talk about 'racial diversity' and 'multiculturalism' in Boulder a lot more than anywhere else I've been, but I've noticed it's very rare to see people from other races/cultures in Boulder - probably because the ridiculous housing prices make it unpractical for anyone but young, white, upwardly mobile, cell phone bearing individuals to move there. Another thing you'll notice about boulder is that it's IMPOSSIBLE to get a table in any decent food distributing business from about noon to 2pm. That's if you can get a parking spot to begin with.

Fort Collins is really another normal town. It's a real place, it has a real economy and real people living in it. It's also doing pretty well for itself and its extremely well balanced for a small american city in all ways. It evolved from an agricultural settlement into a solid, prospering city that works very well.

Boulder, on the other hand, was the site of a gold prospecting settlement. People first went there because of the promise of instant fortune. That mentality has carried through today, except now people just go to Boulder in an attempt to instantly escape the the reality of their lives. You can be the judge of whether it works or not, or whether it's healthy.
Wow...that hit me harder than I thought it would. I had to login (for the first time in awhile) and quote you in full, it was that surprising. As someone who has been contemplating (well, honestly, fantasizing) living in Boulder, it's good to be brought to the ground a bit. These "trustafarian" types would drive me up a wall if I saw them, and with UC Boulder being the "happening" college in Colorado, I expect the rich kids flock to there. Their hypocrisy is infuriating, but not any more so than their naiveté. Sounds like Ft. Collins would be a lot more "grounded".
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