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Old 03-27-2008, 07:21 AM
 
Location: Maryville, TN
3 posts, read 7,461 times
Reputation: 10

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My wife may soon be offered a job in Auburn WA. We are very ourdoorsy people and are very excited about the possibility of moving to the Pacific NW. We know Auburn isn't exactly in the mountains, but we were thinking of trying to live somewhere as close to the mountains as we can get but still within commuting distance (<30 min) of Auburn. Black Diamond seems to fit the bill, so we were wondering what it was like. Are there any other areas we should consider? Speaking of commuting, is the infrastructure in the area conducive to bike commuting (ie do they have a lot of bike lanes or greenway systems)? How is the public transportation system linking Auburn with surrounding towns other than Tacoma and Seattle?

I have just finished my PhD in experimental psych, so I will be looking for teaching or research positions. We don't have a ton of money, so we are anticipating renting at first. We also have two dogs (both a little over 50 lbs...one Doberman and one hound mix) and two cats. It would be really nice to have a back yard for the dogs (currently in a 2 bedroom apartment).

How far toward the mountains do you have to go before you start getting snow in the winter? It seems that Auburn doesn't get much snow at all We are hoping to live within easy driving distance to some good skiing and snowboarding. A nearby mountain bike trail (freeride or downhill) would be awesome too.

Thanks in advance for any info!
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Old 03-27-2008, 12:07 PM
 
8,287 posts, read 14,612,288 times
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Black Diamond is a great town, a little higher in elevation than Auburn and a bit snowier...At that point, and around Enumclaw you're sorta in the foothills of the Cascades so there is some major uphill hiking around ( not quite mountains) and skiing is a little less than an hour away from Black Diamond at Crystal Mountain. The Black Diamond bakery is very well known, been around for 100? years, and makes the best strawberry rhubarb pie on the planet.
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Old 03-27-2008, 06:53 PM
 
Location: Lowlands
271 posts, read 771,656 times
Reputation: 153
Black Diamond is a nice village, in a few years it will get much larger.
Auburn is very close to there, so it should take you no time to drive there.

I live near there in right up against the foothills at around a 1000ft, we got over a foot of snow today, amazing scenery!!!!!
I think I live in the best place in the county.
As soon as I drove out of Black Diamond, the snow was gone.

Send me a PM if you want more info on our area.
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Old 03-30-2008, 01:35 AM
 
Location: PNW
306 posts, read 1,125,128 times
Reputation: 116
I second the Black Diamond Bakery--and you will often find bikes "parked" in front of it, as it seems Black Diamond is a place lots of people like to bike in.

If you're a cyclist for the fun of it, there are lots of paved trails in the area to bike as well as Mtn. biking up at Tiger Mtn. King County Parks and Recreation, Washington (http://www.metrokc.gov/parks/trails/index.html - broken link)

Bicycle commuting from Black Diamond into Auburn probably isn't the safest. You'd be biking along Auburn-Black Diamond Rd for the majority of the commute, and it is fairly twisty with little shoulder (no bike lanes) and once you pass the Hwy 18 on/off ramps, heading toward Auburn you'll find yourself sharing the road with dump trucks... BUT, the commute via car is really easy, you'd encounter little to no traffic using surface streets.
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Old 06-17-2008, 01:11 AM
 
1 posts, read 2,916 times
Reputation: 10
Default Pacific NW Move

Although not a "destination" area the SE King County area provides ample opportunity for what you are looking for..that being said Pierce County is better priced and a better choice for economical reasons. Enumclaw is a nice location, but a little South for traffic reasons to Auburn, Black Diamond is more rustic and smaller with a great bike shop(some traffic), lots of local x-country mtb trails and a few scattered downhill opportunitities. Both have great access to Crystal Mtn(Boyne Resorts) which provides some of the best skiing/boarding/backountry around other than Mt Baker. You will not be dissapointed except for communiting to Seattle which would be much better served living on the I-90 corridor(North Bend, Issaquah) and is a major freeway with greater acces to what the PNW has to offer in terms of acces with a car. Not much for commute ither than driving unless you live on HWY 169 and commute via the Cedar River Trail to Renton for work on a road bike(11 miles from Maple Valley, 15-20 from Black Diamond and the quadruaple wide urban(asphalt) trail does not extend into Black Diamond yet.

Good luck, let me know if you have any questions.
-Nate
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