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Old 05-31-2017, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Greenville SC 'Waterfall City'
7,589 posts, read 4,011,810 times
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the foothills area in Western SC is an idea, Seneca-Clemson-Central-Pendleton-Anderson. Three great lakes, near Blue Ridge mountains, ton of waterfalls in the area, and the whitewater river Chattooga that the movie Deliverance was filmed on is 1 hour away.

Clemson University 17,500 acre experimental forest located north and south of the campus has a ton of a hiking and biking trails.

great weather, get 4 seasons but not too cold in winter and not much snow, and the area gets good fall color.

Last edited by ClemVegas; 05-31-2017 at 06:31 PM..
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Old 05-31-2017, 10:29 PM
 
Location: In the heights
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Kingston, New York can work or several other parts of Upstate New York.

Kingston is on the scenic Hudson River and is close to a bunch of other small quaint towns of which it is among the larger in its immediate area. There are the Catskills mountains immediately to its west which you can either drive to or take this novelty train to. If you ever felt the need to visit a larger city, there's the slightly larger Albany to the north and the much larger New York City to the south. If you feel so inclined, you can also take a trip further north to Montreal in Quebec.

The city is pretty inexpensive and there have been a fair number of artists and craftsmen I've known who've moved there.

Another option I like is Altoona, Pennsylvania which I know about through the crazy curve through the mountains the train through there takes. The city itself is in the Allegheny mountains.

Last edited by OyCrumbler; 05-31-2017 at 11:01 PM..
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Old 06-01-2017, 07:26 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
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Dayton, Ohio is surrounded by quaint, small towns, and has a LOT of "nature" around it, believe it or not. It has natural gorges, rivers, walking paths, TONS of bike trails, etc. Four seasons, beautiful falls, weather that's not too extreme, and the Great Lakes are not too far away for a day trip. Fairly close to Chicago, and Dayton itself has a lot to offer. Check out Yellow Springs, Xenia, Germantown, and Lebanon, just to name a few close by little villages with charming "Main" streets, good restaurants, nearby parks, artist colonies, etc.
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Old 06-01-2017, 10:46 AM
 
Location: Brew City
4,246 posts, read 2,517,507 times
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Traverse City, MI


Gorgeous setting on Lake Michigan with Old Mission and Leelanau Peninsulas for exploring. Sleeping Bear Dunes, Torch Lake, Charlevoix, Fishtown, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4rxnfKCvDE


https://www.traversecity.com/


Grand Traverse County, MI | Official Website


https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti..._Michigan.html
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Old 06-01-2017, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Bellingham, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vegabern View Post
Traverse City, MI


Gorgeous setting on Lake Michigan with Old Mission and Leelanau Peninsulas for exploring. Sleeping Bear Dunes, Torch Lake, Charlevoix, Fishtown, etc.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4rxnfKCvDE


https://www.traversecity.com/


Grand Traverse County, MI | Official Website


https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti..._Michigan.html
My very outdoorsy friend from CO moved there with his wife and kids to be closer to her family and he seems to love it.

Other suggestions... upstate SC and NC is a great location, with plenty of cute towns and close proximity to the Blue Ridge Mountains and not too far from the coast.

And as others have mentioned, plenty of small towns in the Pac NW. It's not cheap, but outside of the major metros and in demand towns, there are some relative bargains. Towns in Skagit County, WA or on the dry side in Wenatchee are possibilities.
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:57 PM
 
Location: Johnson City, TN
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Johnson City, TN. A university town at the edge of the mountains. Close to Asheville and Boone but much more affordable.
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:59 PM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
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Grand Junction, CO.
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Old 06-01-2017, 02:02 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
78,820 posts, read 70,635,877 times
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Port Townsend, WA. Quaint, in the shadow of the Olympic Mountains, and right on Puget Sound (sailing is a local thing, along with hiking), parks, bike trails, fabulous scenery, restaurants, the big box stores are exiled to the next town over, nice community atmosphere, much lower rents than Seattle. What's not to like? Oh, and significantly less rain than Seattle. It's in the rain shadow of the mountains.

Also: Durango, CO. Wonderful small town in what you could call the foothills of the mountains leading up to Telluride. There's a college in town, with an anthropology museum, seasonal events, hiking, spectacular scenery, especially if you drive up the road to Ouray, or take the narrow-gauge train to Silverton. There are some very good local restaurants, even a Himalayan restaurant. Hot springs, great camping, etc. In winter, there's snow. In Port Townsend, no snow, if it matters to you.

Last edited by Ruth4Truth; 06-01-2017 at 02:12 PM..
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Old 06-02-2017, 10:36 AM
 
Location: City of North Las Vegas, NV
11,290 posts, read 7,881,663 times
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noticing that the answers are all over the US map!
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Old 06-02-2017, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
425 posts, read 294,948 times
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Frankfort, Kentucky would fit the bill. Frankfort is the State Capital, but the city population is only about 25,000 and is not very big. Frankfort has a big kayaking and hiking community with the Elkhorn Creek and Kentucky River being big draws in the Summer and Fall. About 1 hour away is the Red River Gorge National Geological Area within the Daniel Boone National Forest. Miles upon miles of hiking for all skill levels. There is also a large rock climbing community there. Within Frankfort itself is Cove Springs Park which is actually a very nice park for it's size.
Frankfort's downtown offers many small shops and restaurants from a bakery to a Bourbon Bar and a brewery that recently opened. On the peripheral of Frankfort you have the typical chain restaurants and stores. Kentucky State University is also in Frankfort.
For someone who likes to hike and enjoys diverse scenery, Frankfort and the surrounding area is beautiful!

Last edited by JMT; 06-02-2017 at 09:07 PM.. Reason: violation of rules for posting images
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