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Old 11-14-2015, 02:53 AM
 
8 posts, read 11,770 times
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Hello,

In my last post here I was focused on cities but have since realized that I want to live in the country, close to a major city. So I'm back looking for advice again... I appreciate any opinions out there! Thanks again for humoring my long-winded and silly wish-list.

Here is what I have in mind:

- Hiking trails and adventure sports are priority #1- lakes and mountains nearby for hiking, jetskiing/waterskiing, skiing. I would like to be able to walk out my door and have access to hiking trails if possible.
- Being close to a big city is priority #2 (less than 30 minute drive would be ideal).
- Affordable real estate, NOT the suburbs.
- On-the-grid, as my job requires cable internet.
- Safe (I would like to be able to go walking down my street and nearby areas without worrying that the country neighbors down the street own mean pitbulls or other aggressive dogs that are going to chase after me... someplace where people prefer collies and golden retrievers, know what I mean?). No offense to pitbull lovers out there, I know there are well-trained ones and so on... this is just my preference.
- Unusual scenery, something really breathtaking nearby (such as Moab, UT or South Lake Tahoe, CA... but cheaper)
- Mild to warm winters, but with a skiing mountain nearby that gets snow. Preferably light to no snow where I'd be living, someplace that is mild/warm year round, possibly a Mediterranean type climate. Sunny, not overcast year round.
- A lot of people in their late 20s/30s/early 40s who are childless/childfree- I don't intend to have kids and I would like to find a like-minded community. Also, I am agnostic and socially liberal (again, no offense to anyone!)... so I would not fit in well in especially right-leaning areas. To further define this, I get along well with conservatives who just don't like being overtaxed, but would not get along so well with tea-party types who oppose abortion and gay marriage, NRA gun fanatics, etc.
- Someplace where people are generally college-educated (or self-educated tinkerers)- a community of artists, people who teach themselves to home brew or build furniture, things like that. People who like playing board games like scrabble and chess and settlers of catan. But not overly hipster-esque.

Since I may already be offending some people, I may as well take it a step further and speak plainly about my biases/generalizations about different states I've lived in or visited.... I have gotten along really well with Pennsylvanians and Californians that I've met, overall. Love them, usually fit right in. People in Nevada I was neutral about, they seemed perfectly nice. I found some people from OR to be too cynical and trendy and sarcastic/mocking for my liking. New Yorkers, similar to Oregon but more overtly rude and clannish and competitive. And Louisiana, I was horrified by (sorry!). Yes, these are oversimplified generalizations, and I don't want to rule out entire states, but just putting out there what my impressions were, however unfair, for the purpose of this post.

Yes, my list is completely unreasonable even without the word "cheap" in there and probably doesn't exist! But I'd like to aim high. Lastly, looking for someplace out West or possibly southwest. Primarily looking at California, but just as open to UT, NV, AZ, WA, etc.

P.S. If there is an affordable lake town along the Pacific Crest Trail or similar, that would be really neat.


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Old 11-14-2015, 11:44 AM
 
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Maybe someplace like Fort Collins, CO or Missoula MT.
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Old 11-14-2015, 12:38 PM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,452 posts, read 11,431,560 times
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Specify "cheap" and what kind of residence you are ok with renting or buying.
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Old 11-14-2015, 12:41 PM
 
56,569 posts, read 80,870,855 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightlysparrow View Post
Specify "cheap" and what kind of residence you are ok with renting or buying.
Also, what would be considered a "big" city?
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Old 11-14-2015, 12:48 PM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,452 posts, read 11,431,560 times
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And for that matter, what do you consider a "suburb"? Many former suburbs are now "metro" areas with nearly everything one needs on a regular basis.
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Old 11-14-2015, 04:03 PM
 
4,247 posts, read 9,713,753 times
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If you are open to the interior Northeast, much of the attitude associated with NY City/Boston dissipates.

Glens Falls, NY, if you consider the Albany-Schenectady-Troy metro a big city to be 30 minutes or so from. Or perhaps other nooks and crannies around Albany. More hiking to the north but also to the east/northeast and the southwest. The Hudson River is tidal here but fresh water on top of the fjord as far south as about Poughkeepsie. Lake George and Lake Champlain (sometimes considered a sixth Great Lake) are just north.

The area around Syracuse, NY would be cheaper, but that's because there is less economic opportunity and fewer millennials. The University has some ~10,000 students but not large enough compared to the size of the city to push it into the classic university-town category (if you want that, Ithaca is about an hour's drive southwest). There is hikable terrain in the hills to the south not just heading to the Adirondacks. Oneida Lake is fairly large and powerboat friendly, and the Finger Lakes, Lake Ontario, and numerous smaller lakes (with homes that could be "affordable" for year round living depending on your standards) are also close by.
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Old 11-14-2015, 04:13 PM
 
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The more like Aspen/Jackson Hole someplace gets the more expensive it gets. What you need is a happy medium and plenty of them exist. Check out New Hampshire.
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Old 11-14-2015, 05:47 PM
 
56,569 posts, read 80,870,855 times
Reputation: 12499
Quote:
Originally Posted by ki0eh View Post
If you are open to the interior Northeast, much of the attitude associated with NY City/Boston dissipates.

Glens Falls, NY, if you consider the Albany-Schenectady-Troy metro a big city to be 30 minutes or so from. Or perhaps other nooks and crannies around Albany. More hiking to the north but also to the east/northeast and the southwest. The Hudson River is tidal here but fresh water on top of the fjord as far south as about Poughkeepsie. Lake George and Lake Champlain (sometimes considered a sixth Great Lake) are just north.

The area around Syracuse, NY would be cheaper, but that's because there is less economic opportunity and fewer millennials. The University has some ~10,000 students but not large enough compared to the size of the city to push it into the classic university-town category (if you want that, Ithaca is about an hour's drive southwest). There is hikable terrain in the hills to the south not just heading to the Adirondacks. Oneida Lake is fairly large and powerboat friendly, and the Finger Lakes, Lake Ontario, and numerous smaller lakes (with homes that could be "affordable" for year round living depending on your standards) are also close by.
Syracuse University has about 21,000 undergrad/grad student(and growing) and Le Moyne College has about 4500 students or so. This doesn't include SUNY Upstate Medical Center, Onondaga Community College or the other institutions(nursing, etc) or nearby area colleges/universities. With this said, the city's East Side is the closest thing to a college town feel around the University Hill/University/Westcott neighborhoods.

Like you, I agree with the Albany area and thought of places like Ballston Spa and Saratoga Springs. There are communities like Catskill and Hudson south of Albany that are closer to the Catskill Mountains. Chatham is SE of the city and is closer to the Taconics and Berkshires. Cobleskill may be another nearby community to look into.
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