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Old 02-23-2010, 11:17 AM
 
2 posts, read 37,275 times
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Hello - this is my first post to the city-data forum. I have been reading several threads regarding Colorado and NM. My family is looking into moving to either southern Colorado or northern New Mexico. We currently live in western North Carolina (20 miles west of Asheville) and love having 4 seasons. We are not afraid of snow - just don't want to move to an area that would have us "snowed in" for days. I have looked at weatherbase.com but wanted to get feedback from locals about cities with the least amount of snow in either Colorado or New Mexico. Looking forward to lots of sunny days.

As for schools, it seems both states have good schools. Is this correct?? Thank you for any help.
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Old 02-23-2010, 12:52 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,091,437 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by headedwest11 View Post
Hello - this is my first post to the city-data forum. I have been reading several threads regarding Colorado and NM. My family is looking into moving to either southern Colorado or northern New Mexico. We currently live in western North Carolina (20 miles west of Asheville) and love having 4 seasons. We are not afraid of snow - just don't want to move to an area that would have us "snowed in" for days. I have looked at weatherbase.com but wanted to get feedback from locals about cities with the least amount of snow in either Colorado or New Mexico. Looking forward to lots of sunny days.

As for schools, it seems both states have good schools. Is this correct?? Thank you for any help.
Last question first--there is consderable variation in the quality of Colorado and New Mexico schools. You need to research each district in which you might choose to locate. Some are good, some are average, some are pretty dismal.

Not directly related to your question, but the culture of southern Colorado and northern New Mexico may certainly be a consideration for Anglos moving into the area who are not familiar with the culture. The area is heavily Hispanic, with many families tracing their roots back for many generations. In all of that time, in many ways, the Anglo and Hispanic cultures have not really assimilated with one another. It is a very unique region culturally, and most people--Anglos especially--either love it or hate it. Adults can often adapt quite well, but it may be more difficult for some children in school. By the way, I have a lot of both Hispanic and Anglo friends from southern Colorado and northern New Mexico, and have been spending time there for over four decades, so the cultural landscape is pretty familiar to me.

Weatherbase is a great source for snowfall and general climate information. Most larger Colorado towns--excepting the resort areas--are located in areas with either less snowfall or warmer winter temperatures, or both. The areas with least snowfall in Colorado are the lower elevation areas in the western valleys, the San Luis Valley, the lower Arksansas River valley, and some areas on the Eastern Plains. That said, places like the San Luis Valley, for example, get extremely cold in winter, so what snow falls may stay on the ground for weeks. That can happen in the west central valleys in a cold winter--it happened this year. On the plains, snowfall can be relatively sparse, but can come in major storms with a paralyzing blizzard every year or two. The same description pretty much holds true for northern New Mexico, though the lower elevation areas tend to have a milder winter climate than do most areas of Colorado.

Finally, unless you have a job or an independent income in hand, most areas of southern Colorado and northern New Mexico are an absolutely foul place in which to try to make a living. Some of the most impoverished counties in the United States are located in that area.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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The towns in the high desert get much less snow than towns in the mountains. The towns on the plains get even less snow. Of the towns in the high desert, more or less you can expect them to share the similar amounts of snowfall whether in Colorado or northern NM. Such towns include Trinidad, Pueblo, Antonito and a whole bunch of others. There may be some local variance, but as a group they receive much less snowfall then the towns located in the mountains.

Last edited by 80skeys; 02-23-2010 at 02:38 PM..
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Old 02-24-2010, 06:02 AM
 
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Thanks so much for the info. What about Fort Collins, LaPorte, Loveland or Greely? I was guessing that they get a good bit of snow since they are further north but it seems that isn't always the case. I know that Fort Collins was rated highly in Businessweek mag.
One other question. I love drive in movies and saw online that there are supposed to be about 13 still open in Colorado. Do any of you know if this is about right or know of atleast a few that are good ones. It would be a bonus to find a nice city that's not too far from a drive in.
Thanks again
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Old 02-24-2010, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
12,840 posts, read 23,194,240 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by headedwest11 View Post
Thanks so much for the info. What about Fort Collins, LaPorte, Loveland or Greely? I was guessing that they get a good bit of snow since they are further north but it seems that isn't always the case. I know that Fort Collins was rated highly in Businessweek mag.
One other question. I love drive in movies and saw online that there are supposed to be about 13 still open in Colorado. Do any of you know if this is about right or know of atleast a few that are good ones. It would be a bonus to find a nice city that's not too far from a drive in.
Thanks again
Those cities are all near each other, thus they get about the same snowfall. 40-60 inches or thereabouts. Doesn't stick around forever though.

North isn't the particular indicator for snow around here.
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Old 02-24-2010, 08:21 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,091,437 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by headedwest11 View Post
Thanks so much for the info. What about Fort Collins, LaPorte, Loveland or Greely? I was guessing that they get a good bit of snow since they are further north but it seems that isn't always the case. I know that Fort Collins was rated highly in Businessweek mag.
One other question. I love drive in movies and saw online that there are supposed to be about 13 still open in Colorado. Do any of you know if this is about right or know of atleast a few that are good ones. It would be a bonus to find a nice city that's not too far from a drive in.
Thanks again
The cities you've mentioned, with the exception of LaPorte, are basically just metro blobs with a lot of sprawling suburbia--yuk! Greeley and Fort Collins still have nice downtown areas, but it is a small fraction of the greater suburban area. LaPorte is basically just a suburb of Fort Collins. Fort Collins used to be one of Colorado's prettiest communities, but sprawl has pretty much wrecked it, in my opinion. As for Greeley, it was historically an agricultural community and still has some of that, but sprawl is taking over. It also has some meat packing plants and has some significant problems with illegal aliens, Mexican gangs, etc. Another "used to be a nice place in Colorado" that increasingly is not anymore. Loveland is just slowly growing together with Fort Collins. Again, increasingly just a sprawling suburban mess. I freely admit--I despise suburbia and what it has done to the landscape--especially the sprawling, auto-dependent model that is the norm in just about everything that has been built in the last 40 years in this country. Unfortunately, that time period has coincided exactly with Colorado's exponential growth spurt, so that is what we have built. It sucks.

The previous post covers the snowfall issue in those places pretty well. Fort Collins gets more than Greeley. Loveland, Fort Collins and Greeley are also influenced by the typical Front Range climate pattern which means they can get frequent (and sometimes extreme) Chinook warming winds in winter that melt the snow they get, but they can also get big "dumps" of snow and occasional blizzards. North of Fort Collins or Greeley toward Cheyenne, Wyoming are particularly prone to that pattern. I used to live in SE Wyoming, so I know plenty about that.
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Old 02-24-2010, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
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You know Jazz, you can be immune to the sprawl as long as you don't venture into it (as in, you stay in the older parts of town exclusively). I try and avoid sprawl in a similar way. The bright side is that there is still tons of CO that is undeveloped (but not as much as there used to be, of course).

I went to Greeley for the first time ever last week, and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. It wasn't what I expected. I'd live there.
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Old 02-24-2010, 12:17 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,091,437 times
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Originally Posted by David Aguilar View Post
You know Jazz, you can be immune to the sprawl as long as you don't venture into it (as in, you stay in the older parts of town exclusively). I try and avoid sprawl in a similar way. The bright side is that there is still tons of CO that is undeveloped (but not as much as there used to be, of course).

I went to Greeley for the first time ever last week, and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. It wasn't what I expected. I'd live there.
And I do venture into it as seldom as possible. 30 years ago, Greeley and Fort Collins were both some of the lovelier communities in Colorado. Greeley has always had the packing plants and (then) the sugar beet plants, but it was predominantly an agricultural community. Suburbanziation has really wrecked a lot of that character. I am, unfortunately in some ways, saddled with the memory of what those places were when they truly were wonderful places, so I have to live with the heartbreak of seeing what they have become--memories and perspective that newcomers obviously do not have and frequently can't even fathom.
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Old 02-24-2010, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Durango, CO
118 posts, read 267,947 times
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Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
...Suburbanziation has really wrecked a lot of that character. I am, unfortunately in some ways, saddled with the memory of what those places were when they truly were wonderful places, so I have to live with the heartbreak of seeing what they have become--memories and perspective that newcomers obviously do not have and frequently can't even fathom.
To be fair, I've lived in 7 states and this can be said unequivocally about parts of all 7 of them. It’s certainly not a Colorado-centric phenomenon.
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