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Old 10-11-2006, 11:11 AM
699 posts, read 2,326,793 times
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Because of all the posts on Silver City, we have traveled there and really liked the area north of the city. We are looking for 3-5 acres of wooded land and found it there! We are going back in December.

BUT...before we put money down, can some of the people in the know tell me exactly how Ruidoso compares to Silver City? Most interested in the cost of wooded land where we can build our retirement home. Is it a little colder OR a lot colder? Does Ruidoso have all the shopping and medical facilities that Silver City has? Is the town as old as Silver City? Is the wooded land located in one direction from the town like SC or is it in different areas? We know that we would have to see it for ourselves but want to know what to expect before we make the trip. Is it something to consider or not? Thanks in advance. If it were not for this forum we would never have known about Silver City or Ruidoso!
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Old 10-11-2006, 12:00 PM
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Default Night and Day

Silver City is a real town, Ruidoso is a resort community. If you like Texans, horse racing, traffic jams, and glitz, Ruidoso is for you. If you want laid back, ranching, old west - go for SC.
Silver is at the foot of the mountains, hence pines to the north, and scrub to the south. Ruidoso is in the mountains - pine trees all around, snow, skiing.
Which town you will like better depends on what you are looking for.
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Old 10-12-2006, 01:10 AM
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I totally agree Domino. Ruidoso is the Vegas type of town; dice, cards, racing and the sort. Silver City is cowboy western, old mines, wagon wheels, laid-back lifestyle, that kind of thing.
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Old 10-12-2006, 06:59 AM
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Default Would wooded land be more expensive?

Is the wooded land more expensive in Ruidoso?
Can you live on the outskirts, just as you could in Silver City, and get away from it all or is it like a "Vegas" place?
Our goal is a retirement home in a peaceful wooded area with moderate temperatures. So far Silver City fits... BUT we haven't seen Ruidoso... Hmmmm
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Old 10-12-2006, 09:39 AM
Location: Albuquerque, NM
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AZLoafer - I would certainly go check out Ruidoso. Even though it is "Vegas Style" in some ways, it is still primarily a mountain resort town. I personally would take Ruidoso over Silver City because of the great amenties it has. Wonderful restaurants, shopping, golf, horse racing, and such. Unfortunately I can't speak to the difference in cost, but I'm sure that information is on the web, just google Ruidoso. The entire area is wooded, and I'm sure you can still find affordable land on the outskirts or nearby communities. You will definitely see more snow in Ruidoso in the winter months. But what a beautiful city!!!!
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Old 10-12-2006, 10:27 PM
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I live near Ruidoso and have been there several times. While it does have its Vegas-type attractions, they are in a couple of pockets here and there and you have to go looking for them. The biggest casino is not even in town. It's several miles south on the Apache reservation. The horse track is a few miles in the other direction. The downtown area is quite nice. It is a bit like a strip, but I've never seen any major traffic jams. I would guess that those come with the out-of-town skiers.

The amenities are just right. Not too many and not too few. There is a good hospital there (I've been treated at it), there are good docs in town, and there is even a Wal-Mart if you want one. There's even a good health food store. Not bad for a town of only 10,000 people.

Real estate can be pricey. Not sure how it compares with Silver City's, but I would guess that it's more expensive. Just go to realtor.com and do a search on land in your price range. You'll find out really fast what the going rates are.

There's not much outside of town, as most of the outside of town, at least to the south, is the Indian reservation. There are towns to the north and east, but they are lower in elevation and are in very different climates. To the west, you get even lower, like around 5,000 feet or less. (If you're looking for the Old West, just head east from Ruidoso and into eastern Lincoln County, where you'll find legendary towns once frequented by Billy the Kid and his rival outlaws.)

Ruidoso is at 7,000 feet, a little lower than Santa Fe. Silver City is at 6,000 feet. In NM, 1,000 feet makes a big difference. At 6K, you are out of the thick woods and tall pines. Still, at 7K, you won't have to deal with much snow or worry about having 4WD unless you head higher up or live on an unplowed road.

I think Ruidoso is a great little town. Certainly worth a trip to see it. Try to go before the snow builds up so you can see the town as it is without all the skiers and other part-timers. They are a big part of the town (and its economy), but if you are year-rounders, you will more often experience it as just the small town/little city that it is.

Again, do a search on realtor.com and do some more homework before you go. Call a real estate agent and make appointments to see some properties. You can learn the lay of the land there in maybe two days if you go prepared.
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Old 10-12-2006, 11:18 PM
Location: Metromess
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jecc: How about Capitan? It's not far from Ruidoso. I know it's a bit flatter and lower, but not much, and Ruidoso is only 20 or so miles away.
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Old 10-13-2006, 01:06 AM
699 posts, read 2,326,793 times
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Thumbs up Thank You Everyone...

Thank You everyone for all your information. We are putting Ruidoso on a must see status!
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Old 10-13-2006, 04:59 AM
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Azloafer, the scenery around Ruidoso is very beautiful. I love looking at the Sierra Blanca mountain, with snow on it, and it contrasts with the lower mountains, that have tons of pines around Ruidoso. The town is pretty small, so not a lot of jobs but mostly tourism type of jobs. It is in a fire hazard zone, having so many thick pines, and it can have droughts, adding to the fire hazard. Again though, the scenery is very beautiful. It is also quite interesting to just go, say to White Sands sand dunes, about 55 miles away and it be a total desert. So lots of climate changes through there. It is mostly tourist oriented, but when you see the scenery, you will see why it is a tourist attraction.

Last edited by Crackerjack; 10-13-2006 at 05:27 AM..
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Old 10-13-2006, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by catman View Post
jecc: How about Capitan? It's not far from Ruidoso. I know it's a bit flatter and lower, but not much, and Ruidoso is only 20 or so miles away.
Haven't been there yet. Gotta check it out soon. My neighbors are going there this weekend for some kind of annual Old West cowboy re-enactment shindig. Lots of Old West history in Capitan.

It's around 6300 feet, a little higher than Silver City. High enough for light snow. The population is much smaller than Silver City's or Ruidoso's (I think it's about 2,000), and the median home value is quite a bit lower. I'm sure there's not much employment, but if you're retiring, who cares!

Anyone who's going to Ruidoso should absolutely make the drive to Capitan. Azloafer, are you reading this? If you're interested in Silver City, you might become even more interested in Capitan.

I really don't know much about Silver City, but from what I hear, it is growing and property prices are really going up. The town has been "discovered," I guess. I've heard it referred to as Santa Fe's little sister. This might be something to keep in mind. Do you want to retire to a place that might double in size in the next 10-20 years?

A place like Capitan is more likely to stay small. It's on the tourist route, so plenty of people pass through. But I think it's far enough from bigger civilization to get very big in our lifetimes. Ruidoso has been growing, but towns here in the high mountains grow slowly over decades. There is so much federal forest land here that it's hard to find large tracts to develop. Limited water supply also keeps the hordes away, as do snowy winters and hazardous roads.

Check it out for yourself and let me know what you think.
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