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Old 04-15-2016, 07:29 AM
 
Location: Great upstate
185 posts, read 127,711 times
Reputation: 99

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Bare with me I have a lot on my mind to ask . I have done a decent amount of research on the Tucson area and have some questions maybe some locals could help with ?

Job offer in the Tucson airport I would be comming from the upstate New York area so I am looking forward to a low humidity no winter climate . I enjoy winter but 20+ years of it I can do without but I mainly want low humidity summers .

I heard it gets humid in the monsoon season is it as bad as a Florida/ Louisiana humid where it's just steam bath and soaked clothes going for a walk ?

What is the fall, winter and spring temperatures/weather like ?

I read a lot about how this is one of the most dangerous high crime cities in the country , just how bad is it ? Should I be scared of walking outside alone after the sun goes down or being robbed/mugged ?

Which would be easier for someone to list , which areas to avoid or which are good parts to look for an apartment ?. I would prefer a gated community with amenities over a stand alone place and one bedroom one bath .

I've read it has a ton of health food places cheap produce , is this true ? I like to eat clean and workout so this is a huge plus for me !

I'm also into hiking , running and snowboarding I want to get into kayaking and mountain biking as well is there endless places for this in the city ?

How bad is the wildlife ? I know it's the dessert but should I live in fear every day wondering when I'll die in my sleep from a spider or scorpion bite ? Or even be attacked by a mountain lion while hiking ?

Are the locals accepting or will they shut you out and pay no mind to you ?

I am a non religious white male not much into politics would I fit in here ?
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Old 04-15-2016, 08:02 AM
 
84 posts, read 63,848 times
Reputation: 75
I am not officially a local yet, but about to be, but I just did my scouting of the entire area...

For the humidity question, no-one seems to agree on this, but one person posted the actual humidity results and it would seem to me humidity during the monsoon is more like Oklahoma City or Austin-TX, rather than New Orleans or Houston. Hence, it is bad at times but it is short-lived compared to the Gulf Coast (or East Coast in summers).

Crime is pretty bad, but not much different than Chicago / Houston / Detroit / LA, etc... IF you are in a bad area, watch out, but stay out of the bad areas, and you should be ok.

Fall-Winter-Spring are pretty much perfect, but I guess there is SOME difference depending on your elevation. If you want cooler weather, find the highest elevation spots (Vail, AZ is one of the highest close enough to still commute to the airport). Summer doesn't seem that bad since at night it USUALLY won't be humid (sometimes during the monsoon), but during the day it will be hot. Basically 4 months of hot weather, and 8 months of good weather (at least if you can find some shade).

North side is quite affluent and still has some ok deals, including Northeast side.

Parts of Central / Immediate South / Immediate East are generally the areas to avoid. You can quickly tell by using Google Virtual Driving on Google Maps to see if the area is bad, one thing about Tucson is most of the BAD areas show it. If you go far enough South like to Sahuarita or Green Valley, then it gets affluent / better, or far enough South East to Vail is good as well. Not sure about the airport area, but I'd say the airport area appeared kind of HIT or MISS, so I'd probably go a bit farther away. The NE has quite a few apartments, there are some deals. To me it seemed like condo's and townhomes were found at better deals than apartments (for what you get anyhow, especially on the NE side). Pretty much all of the North side (or most of it) is fine AFIK, didn't go to the West or NW side.

Unlike most cities of its size, Tucson does not have many apartment complexes outside of the main population areas, but you can find some townhouses and condos or even cheap small homes (so make sure to include those in your search).

I think wildlife anywhere is the LEAST concern of all things, really almost no-one gets hurt by wildlife. Your more likely to get hurt by an unchained dog or a slipped collar in a city park, which is actually the most common animal injury in the US...

My main concern in this area is the Valley Fever issue, you might want to check that out before you sign a lease (something I overlooked)... Probably won't affect you (or most people), but it is still something to be aware of.

Last edited by ScaryTucson; 04-15-2016 at 08:13 AM..
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Old 04-15-2016, 05:00 PM
 
Location: Great upstate
185 posts, read 127,711 times
Reputation: 99
Thank you very much for all your input scary Tucson it is much appreciated .

I think vail would interest me the higher elevation I like being higher up , where I am now the valley will get say 5 inches and 20 minutes in the higher elevation we get a foot of snow , mainly the cool summer nights I enjoy sleeping with the windows open !

What exactly is valley fever ? I don't have any breathing problems or allergies or does that not matter ?
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:09 PM
 
84 posts, read 63,848 times
Reputation: 75
It's a parasitical fungus that affects thousands of people, but only a few people are seriously affected each year. Unless your in construction, I probably wouldn't worry about it too much, just avoid outdoors in the lower elevations as much as possible during windy conditions, and do not breathe the dust in if you can help it.

Vail is a good place, there are hundreds of trails if not more just south of there in the Santa Rita mountains, and north of there as well. The good thing about Vail is you can escape the heat in a couple parks to the south or in the mountains to the north, there is a trail that starts around 5500 in elevation I passed while driving (should be about 13-15 degrees colder than Tucson during summer), not sure if they allow bikes on it, but I think so. You can also go east and bike up/down Mt Graham or you can go to Sierra Vista and go biking around there.

For biking, I think this place is probably a paradise, I probably wouldn't bike in the lower valley desert during the peak times of valley fever exposure (june thru dec), but the mountains should be ok, and other than that Tucson was pretty nice.

I've been all over the US, almost every major city, and at least to me the scenery of Tucson is right up there with the best. I like it better than much of the scenery in Colorado, even better than Colorado Springs, because Tucson has just endless mountain ranges in every direction, unlike the front range of Colorado where it is just on one side.

You are surrounded by mountains, and many of them look almost as big as the mtns of Colorado since the prominence is so high, even though they are shorter.

I was shocked how good the scenery was here, especially south of town it's almost like New Zealand looking at parts and south of town is VERY green during and after the monsoon.

EDIT:
You can snowboard on Mt Lemmon, it's not very far at all, maybe a 1 to 1.5 hour drive from the switchbacks. Snow conditions probably aren't great since it is so far south, but it's probably ok some of the year. Of course there is Flagstaff which is about 4.5 hours north if you really want to get serious with the snowboarding.
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Tucson, AZ
613 posts, read 768,965 times
Reputation: 1134
Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
I heard it gets humid in the monsoon season is it as bad as a Florida/ Louisiana humid where it's just steam bath and soaked clothes going for a walk ?
It gets a little bit humid. A little. People in places where humidity is a real problem laugh at Tucsonan's who say it's "humid" during the monsoons. I've spent time in Florida, Louisiana, South Carolina, Southern New Jersey and Pennsylvania ... believe me, their best days are about like our worst when it comes to humidity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
What is the fall, winter and spring temperatures/weather like ?
Tucson Weather & Climate | Current Weather & Monthly Averages

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
I read a lot about how this is one of the most dangerous high crime cities in the country , just how bad is it ? Should I be scared of walking outside alone after the sun goes down or being robbed/mugged ?
On the one hand, the numbers are not made up. On the other hand take a survey of Tucsonans and you'll find that most people don't report feeling unsafe. The areas where it might be unsafe to walk around you probably wouldn't find yourself wanting to walk around in anyhow. If you ride a bike, buy a good lock. If you drive a car, lock your doors and don't leave valuables visible inside of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
Which would be easier for someone to list , which areas to avoid or which are good parts to look for an apartment ?. I would prefer a gated community with amenities over a stand alone place and one bedroom one bath.
There are nice apartment communities all over town - very easy to find and many of them gated.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
I've read it has a ton of health food places cheap produce , is this true ? I like to eat clean and workout so this is a huge plus for me !
There's no shortage of health food, but I wouldn't say it's overabundant. You will have no trouble finding good food to eat, that is certain.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
I'm also into hiking , running and snowboarding I want to get into kayaking and mountain biking as well is there endless places for this in the city ?
Hiking, running and mountain biking - we've got you covered. For snowboarding we have a small ski resort which is open a couple of weeks a year - it's small and you'll get grass stains on your ski pants, but there's good skiing a few hours drive away in the White Mountains and a little further away near Flagstaff. For kayaking there's some municipal lakes which people use, there's the salt river up near Phoenix and a couple of small lakes South of town - it's not a big sport around here seeing as to how we don't have a ton of water to play in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
How bad is the wildlife ? I know it's the dessert but should I live in fear every day wondering when I'll die in my sleep from a spider or scorpion bite ? Or even be attacked by a mountain lion while hiking ?
Wildlife is awesome - it's never bad unless you don't see it, which means we've overrun yet more habitat.

I don't know anybody here who 1) knows what they are talking about and 2) fears spiders and scorpions. If you live in a place where there are a bunch of scorpions use a blacklight to find them and kill them. Done.

If you see a mountain lion while hiking, well, lucky you. I've seen a few over the decades and they've never wanted to be close to me anymore than I wanted to be close to them. I don't know the numbers but based on the fact that I've never heard of it happening in the area I'd say a mountain lion attack around here is exceedingly rare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
Are the locals accepting or will they shut you out and pay no mind to you ?
The "locals" are a mix of natives and implants. And by natives I could easily mean of native american descent who have lived here for thousands of years, of spanish and native american ancestry who have lived here for hundreds of years or just folks whose families moved here from Chicago three generations ago when the Santa Cruz still flowed through town. To say "they" are or are not accepting would be to think they are all the same, and one thing about Tucsonans that is largely true is that they are not all the same.

Some are great - super friendly and accepting and awesome. Some like to be left alone (it's a big draw for the desert). Some are unfriendly. Find your crowd, whatever your crowd is, and you'll be fine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
I am a non religious white male not much into politics would I fit in here ?
I can't think of any reason why not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upstateanddown View Post
What exactly is valley fever ?
It's a thing that a small number of folks are concerned about and almost nobody else in Tucson is the least bit worried about. Look it up, if you like, and file the information away under "good to know, probably won't need."

Last edited by beTucsonan; 04-15-2016 at 06:41 PM..
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:28 PM
 
84 posts, read 63,848 times
Reputation: 75
Also note that Vail isn't much colder than Tucson, just a little. About 3 degrees usually, sometimes it could be 5 degrees colder, or sometimes the same temp, but usually about 2-4 degrees.

The good thing though is the cooler weather is very close by, hence just a few minutes drive to get even higher up, as you go South of Vail on HWY 83 the elevation goes up pretty quickly to around 5300 (I had a GPS on me), and it was way colder there than in town (like 10 degrees or so).

If you lived in Vail, you can also go East about 15-20 miles towards Mecal, then go North to Rincon Peak or Miller Creek Trail, about 30-40 minute drive is all from Vail. Lost of higher elevation trails 4000-4500 mostly...
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:31 PM
 
84 posts, read 63,848 times
Reputation: 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by beTucsonan View Post
It's a thing that one guy on this board who - best I can tell - doesn't live here yet, seems very concerned about and almost nobody else in Tucson is the least bit worried about. Look it up, if you like, and file the information away under "good to know, probably won't need."
There were other threads about it as well, not just me
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:42 PM
 
Location: Tucson, AZ
613 posts, read 768,965 times
Reputation: 1134
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryTucson View Post
There were other threads about it as well, not just me
Edited to be more fair, but raising the issue in multiple threads is probably not useful to the conversation.
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Old 04-15-2016, 08:23 PM
 
84 posts, read 63,848 times
Reputation: 75
its important for people to be aware of it. They don't have VF awareness week for nothing. Some peeps in here say its nothing, but how many other local diseases in other cities have their own awareness week for a regional infection, oh almost zero...

It is not nothing and awareness is key... It is not the end of the world, just something to be aware of...
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Old 04-18-2016, 04:25 PM
 
Location: Queen Creek, AZ
5,159 posts, read 7,840,400 times
Reputation: 2679
Considering that you are concerned about humidity and health, if you decide to rent before buying a house, be warned that some rentals offering free utilities may have a swamp cooler instead of air conditioning. Swamp coolers work well when the air is dry, but lose their effectiveness during monsoons.
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