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Old 07-13-2012, 11:28 AM
 
9 posts, read 31,398 times
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Finally hitting the Golden (tarnished) Years of semi-retirement. Still own my business, too tired to do the work myself, will manage work of 15 others from home, so can live anywhere. I have lived most everywhere, seashore to mountains to desert, and don't mind any weather extremes other than let's say Las Vegas or Phoenix. I know what I like and don't like about Klamath Falls. Please tell me how you feel about it in generalities or specifics. Have at it (me!)
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:06 PM
 
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley, Oregon
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The area is beautiful, high desert (around 4,000') with a cold winter with occasional snow, a long cool spring, a warm summer with an average high around 90 and a beautiful crisp fall. There are a ton of outdoor activities nearby.

Klamath Falls is a small town (population is almost 40,000, including the county "suburb" of Altamont), somewhat isolated from the rest of the state. We do have a hospital, a very small airport (three flight out per day; one to Portland and two to San Francisco) and an Amtrak station. We have a small university, Oregon Institute of Technology, and a small community college - I wouldn't say the city has a "university town" feel - at all. It's one of the things I think the city could do a lot more with and really hasn't. Shopping and dining are limited, many people travel to Medford, (roughly 80 miles to the west, over the Cascades pass) for larger shopping runs.

Like a lot of rural Oregon cities and counties, Klamath is really struggling at the moment. The city is in somewhat better shape than the county, but the loss of millions of dollars in Federal timber revenue replacement (which may be extended in the short term, but that is a bandaid and nothing else) has forced, and will continue to force, cuts in county and city services. Where this is all going is impossible to know, but it sure looks like the area is sliding backward, as far as employment and city-style amenities.

Housing prices are low (for Oregon). The property tax rate falls in about the middle of the Oregon spectrum at around $0.009/1,000 (more in-city). There is one movie theater and the Ross Ragland, a relatively large and lovely old stage/theater. The Klamath County Museum is an interesting place, as is the private Favell Museum. There is a Children's Museum, but I haven't been to it. In summer we have a Saturday Farmer's Market (and a small Tuesday afternoon market). Third Thursday, June-Sept features a downtown fair where the main street is blocked off for pedestrians.

Last edited by PNW-type-gal; 07-13-2012 at 12:14 PM.. Reason: oops, missed a zero
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:12 PM
 
Location: the Beaver State
6,466 posts, read 12,199,950 times
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Klamath Falls is the county seat of Klamath County. Weather is comparable to Las Vegas, not quite as hot or for as long in the Summer. It's high desert area, so lots of scrub brush and junipers in lower areas. Ponderosa and Lodgepole in the higher areas.

As it's a poorer town, there is a higher then usual drug and alcohol use, especially among the younger generations. There isn't a lot of kids to do, and jobs in general have always been scarce. The Air Force Base, the College, a few call centers, Walmart, and the Algae company are the biggest employers. There is a fairly nice historic downtown area, but not a lot of business to attract people to it.

The local hospital at one time was nicknamed "Murder West" as it had the highest rate of patient deaths in Oregon. I haven't checked the stats lately so I have no idea if that is still true.

It's a gorgeous area though. You're near some historic sites such as the Modoc Stronghold. You're close to Crater Lake, Lake of the Woods and a couple of hours from the Hart Mountain Wildlife Refuge.

Oh, and even though OIT is there, it does not have a college town feel. When I attended OIT, I only went into town to meet family (who already lived there,) and occassionally to eat out.

Probably the biggest political issue is water rights. Local farmers keep drilling down further, this takes more water from the Natives, and the Lake which supports an Endangered Fish Species. Everyone is affected though as water prices go up to compensate.
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:34 PM
 
9 posts, read 31,398 times
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Thank You I have been to KFalls many times and have never noticed an unusual or pervasive odor but in some other posts relating to the area, I see mention of a "smell from the lake"? Within the last month have looked at a few rental houses in different parts of town and found it odd that the landlord at each stressed their particular part of town was "safer". I want to be as close to the "old" downtown as possible...what is your take on "safety" in that area as compared to others? I totally get the lack of resources for basic services, heck I spend time in Curry County on the coast and there are no more than 2 deputies on duty at any one time covering a gazillion square miles, but maybe the "safety" has more to do with drug and alcohol issues and related burglary? I'm no Pollyanna, there are issues everywhere....if there was a perfect place to live, it would be ruined soon by over crowding. KF is one lace in the west I have not done much trout fishing and prefer small wadeable rivers/streams. Asuming there are ample opportunities for similar?
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:56 PM
 
9 posts, read 31,398 times
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Hi again

Did not know of the Ross Ragland or the farmer's market...thank you.

In regards rentals, what I was shown (and what was available the days I was in town) was fairly priced and in good condition. For example: 2 bdrms, 1 bath, detached garage, fenced yard, walking distance to old downtown, allow pets. $825. I know I know, everything is relative...but??

I do need a flight out about every 2 months and I had thought Alaska/Horizon service had stopped with nothing to replace it. Nice to see United Express/Sky West picking up the route.
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Old 07-13-2012, 06:46 PM
 
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley, Oregon
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Since I don't live in town, I can't really recommend neighborhoods. The only things I've heard are by hearsay, and that would that the Mills Addition (the area around Fred Meyer) and parts of the South Suburbs aren't very good. The neighborhood in the hills above town looks to have its better and worse areas as well. I definitely wouldn't rent anything sight unseen, and I'd drive around a lot first.

The United service is better than nothing, but because of connect time, I generally find myself driving over to Medford. I just looked up the schedules, and United has apparently dropped a flight to SFO - there is a flight leaving Klamath Falls for PDX at 5am and a flight leaving for SFO at 6am. Both return flights are 10pm. Last time I flew back from the east coast, that left me with a ridiculous 9 hour layover. My flight back from London had a 14 hour layover. I'm all for supporting local businesses, but I have my limits. From Medford (Rogue Valley "International"), you can get to PDX, Seattle, Denver, Salt Lake City, San Francisco, Oakland, LAX. There aren't a LOT of flights a day, but there are more destinations.

Toward the end of summer, when the lake level gets low and there is a lot of algae, it can smell bad. It is not pervasive through the whole town. Because of natural thermal springs, the water quality in the lake, especially toward town, was never very good in low water conditions, but farming/cattle run-off really hasn't helped. I don't swim in the lake at any time of the year, myself. Some of the tributary streams are gorgeous and clear.

We also have a plague of midges in late summer that can last from a couple weeks to a month. The midges don't bite (they don't actually have a mouth or stinger) but they can swarm in clouds. They come in several waves, with the first wave being the largest ones that can't get through a screen window to the smallest ones which can get through any screening. Some years it's really bad and some years it's minor. It's generally worse toward the lakes, marshes and agricultural canals and not as bad in the heart of town. I live north of town and have to drive 25 miles or so on 97 in to town and it can get very bad along Algoma - in midge season we keep a bucket and a scrub brush by the garage door and scrub off the radiator when we get home.

I don't fish, either, but I'm told by others that this is a relatively good reference:
Oregon Fishing Forum
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Old 07-15-2012, 09:37 PM
 
9 posts, read 31,398 times
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Thank You for your insight. Very helpful
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